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Deborah Barak, CBS Enterprise Exec Identified for Survivor Deal, Dies at 65 – The Hollywood Reporter

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Deborah Barak, a distinguished and longtime CBS enterprise government who oversaw and helped form offers on awards exhibits just like the Grammys, TV sequence Survivor and the CBS All Entry platform, has died. She was 65.

Barak handed away on Saturday at her dwelling in Studio Metropolis whereas surrounded by household and mates, a rep for CBS instructed The Hollywood Reporter. The previous government, whose work spanned CBS Leisure, CBS Tv Studios and CBS Information, had most cancers. In an e-mail to employees Saturday evening, Amy Reisenbach, president, CBS Leisure, shared the information of Barak’s loss of life, expressing that the previous head of CBS’ enterprise affairs was not solely “pure class, intelligence, and goodness,” however “the rationale I really like CBS a lot.”

“I do know that not everybody on this e-mail knew her properly or perhaps in any respect, however those that did, know she was really an incredible human being. She was an unimaginable and devoted mom and grandmother. And he or she was a pricey good friend to so many,” Reisenbach mentioned within the e-mail. “Her brilliance as a enterprise affairs government was unmatched. Debby drove a tough cut price however was all the time truthful and compassionate. She was additionally a mentor to dozens at CBS, together with me.”

In an announcement, CBS Studios president David Stapf described Barak as a mentor, accomplice, pricey good friend and particular person — “equal elements intimidating, sensible as hell and extremely empathetic”

“She was the particular person everybody turned to for counsel and steerage, each professionally and personally. You all the time left her workplace feeling just a little bit smarter and emotionally stronger,” he added. “There was nobody who was extra universally cherished, admired, and revered at CBS and throughout our enterprise.”

Nina Tasler, former chairman, CBS Leisure, and present accomplice and co-founder of PATMA Productions added that Barak was somebody “revered and admired throughout your entire media spectrum” for being “sensible, powerful and fair-minded to all” and “treating everybody with grace and dignity.”

“Her enterprise savviness and complicated negotiating expertise had been matched by her humanity and decency. Working collectively for over 20 years was some of the rewarding experiences of my lifetime.   Her refined mind together with a deep appreciation for artists distinguished Debby as world-class;  few possessed her myriad distinctive abilities,” she continued. “Unassuming and press-shy, she was cherished by her employees and inventive executives all through the corporate and the business at massive.”

Barak joined CBS in 1985 as broadcast counsel for the Community’s West Coast legislation division. Throughout her almost 4 a long time on the firm — which concluded in early 2020 following 5 years as president, enterprise operations, CBS Leisure, CBS Tv Studios and CBS Information — she held quite a few positions that constructed key firm infrastructure round expertise and producer offers in addition to program licensing agreements. She additionally developed new enterprise fashions that reshaped CBS’s late evening, actuality programming and extra.

Barak, who represented CBS on the board that oversaw The CW, dealt with lots of the community’s high-profile TV license renewals, together with The Late Present With David LettermanThe Large Bang Concept and Two And A Half Males, in addition to long term awards franchise renewals, similar to The Grammys, the Nation Music Awards and the Kennedy Middle Honors.

She was notably chargeable for drafting the unique Survivor solid contract, which not solely served the now decades-long present, but in addition grew to become a template for actuality expertise agreements. In late evening, she helped the studio make its pivot from leased to fully-owned programming, negotiating each expertise and manufacturing agreements for Stephen Colbert and James Corden, the primary late evening sequence produced by CBS Tv Studios. She was additionally chargeable for introducing program possession to CBS’ primetime.

As TV made its method into the streaming period, she would assist shepherd the growth into CBS All Entry, together with creating the enterprise template for CBS’ summer time authentic scripted sequence mannequin, which produced an in-season SVOD window and decrease community license charges. She was moreover chargeable for laying the inspiration CBS All Entry’ authentic sequence license construction, which impacted exhibits like Star Trek: Discovery.

One in all her final strikes as a CBS government earlier than her 2020 departure was negotiating CBS’ buy of an curiosity in Kapital Leisure, together with a distribution and co-production take care of Think about Leisure. 

Previous to turning into president of enterprise operations, Barak was CBS’ evp, enterprise operations, CBS Community Tv Leisure Group for 5 years, beginning in 2010. Earlier than that she additionally held the titles of evp, enterprise affairs, CBS Community Tv Leisure Group, svp, enterprise affairs, CBS Leisure; and svp, enterprise planning and particular tasks. Forward of her time on the studio, was an affiliate at O’Melveny & Myers. Barak graduated from UCLA and acquired a legislation diploma from Loyola Regulation College in Los Angeles.

She is survived by her mom, Beverly, in addition to sister Sherri Cunningham and her husband Paul; her son Jonathan and his accomplice Hanna; her two daughters Sarah Buchsbaum and her husband Aaron, in addition to Hannah Milgrom and husband Paul Brumfield; and 4 beloved grandchildren.


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