Peter Liguori has stepped down as FOX Broadcasting Chairman as part of a major piece of corporate restructuring of News Corporation's Los Angeles-based Fox businesses.
Announced Thursday (March 12), the restructuring comes in response to Peter Chernin's recent resignation as News Corporation's president and COO.
"We have -- simply put -- the best management team in the entertainment industry," says News Corp. Chairman and CEO Rupert Murdoch in a statement. "Today’s restructuring, by removing barriers between businesses, will enable us to better share ideas and resources, allowing us to make the most of this team and the talent that populates our ranks."
Effective immediately, Jim Gianopulos and Tom Rothman, co-chairmen of Fox Filmed Entertainment, will oversee the company's film and also television production, with 20th Century Fox TV chairmen Gary Newman and Dana Walden reporting to them.
Tony Vinciquerra, entertainment chairman for Fox Networks Group, will add FOX Broadcasting programming responsibilities to a job title that already includes oversight over most of Fox's cable brands.
The biggest surprise in the restructuring was Liguori's departure from FOX, effective immediately. He'll be replaced by Peter Rice, formerly president of Fox Searchlight.
Liguori came to FOX as entertainment president in 2005 after a successful run at FX, where he helped develop "The Shield" and "Nip/Tuck." He was elevated to chairman in 2007 when Kevin Reilly, another FX veteran, came on as entertainment president.
"Peter Liguori has been an outstanding Fox executive, not only in leading FBC for three seasons, but in his groundbreaking programming that helped build FX into a general entertainment leader. We wish him continued success," Mr. Murdoch says.
He adds, "Peter Rice is one of our most talented creative executives, having championed such films as 'Slumdog Millionaire,' 'Little Miss Sunshine,' and 'Juno' during his tenure at Fox Searchlight. As we increasingly look to apply unconventional approaches to our traditional businesses, I'm convinced Peter Rice is the right person to transform our broadcast television business."
Rice will report to Vinciquerra.
Are you the only one of your friends without a Wii? HitFix wants to give you a chance to win a Wii console player, a Flip digital camera or an iTunes gift card. Show us your entertainment know how and enter the Knowing movie contest today.
Stay up to date with the latest breaking news in the worlds of movies, TV and music by signing up for HitFix E-mail Alerts.