Mark Burnett is leaving MGM from Amazon, returning to Roots Productions, and will continue to oversee the ‘Legacy’ series.

Mark Burnett, chairman of MGM’s global television group, is exiting following Amazon’s $8.5 billion acquisition of the company.

Burnett is leaving the company and will return to “creating and innovating independently” but will continue to oversee his legacy series, which includes Survivor, Shark Tank And the the sound.

Last week, Deadline revealed that the man behind the Apprenticehe was weighing his options with an increasing velocity of introversion between Amazon and MGM.

More details about the overall structure between Amazon and MGM are expected soon as Prime Video and Studios president Mike Hopkins said employees will “hear more soon” about the reorganization.

It comes eight years after he began his relationship with the studio; MGM acquired a majority stake in One Three Media and LightWorkers Media in September 2014 before fully acquiring the companies the following year.

He became president of the MGM Television and Digital Group in December 2015 and re-solidified his deal in 2018 and became head of the studio’s Global Television Group.

It is understood that Burnett’s existing contract expired at the end of the year, and there were rumors that he had begun talking to others about setting up a new production company.

Burnett oversaw both the written and unwritten writing on the company, which is behind series like Hulu The Handmaid’s TaleFX’s FargoAddams Family Netflix series Wednesday and the Vikings franchise.

But Burnett, who is an executive producer for NBC the soundABC Shark tank and CBS’ survivorbest known for his work on The Unwritten World.

He not only graced a slew of hits, and relaunched his first-ever show, environmental challenge, as such Toughest Race in the World: Eco-Challenge Fiji, On Amazon in 2020, however, it only aired for one season, as well as a boxing competition series rival for Epix and The tragedy of Steve Harvey for ABC.

He is currently producing generational gapalong with Jimmy Kimmel, for ABC and Fox’s Shazam won.

Note by Mark Burnett:

Dear Colleagues,

We’ve been together for a very long time, in some cases decades. We’ve created new programming and maintained our legacy with one of the highest renewal rates in global television. I get a lot of compliments on that. But we all know it’s not about me. It’s all about you.

It takes huge teams of talented people to produce more than 3,200 total hours of television including long-running hits like Survivor, The Voice, and Shark Tank and innovative series like The Bible, which together have garnered 143 Emmy nominations.

In 2014, I sold the majority of my companies to MGM and came to this 100-year studio as President of Television. Later, I sold the rest of my companies for MGM stock and became Chairman of the Board of Directors of MGM Global Television because I believed in the value of MGM.

I had a clear strategic vision to build and grow MGM’s television division with my dynamic team, which included buying big companies like Evolution and Big Fish, adding international scripted and non-scripted teams, and starting a documentary unit. We took record risks, hired great people – and the business grew.

This growth was crucial to MGM’s future, because MGM needed to maximize its value in order to attract a global broadcast partner and prepare for the next 100 years. I’m proud to be part of the team that achieved Amazon’s historic sale in 2022.

Now, after months of collaborative transition efforts, we’ve thoughtfully realigned our teams so that they all have the opportunity to thrive under the leadership of Mike Hopkins, Jennifer Salke and Christopher Briarton. In these days of media layoffs, I’m proud to say that everyone in the television division has been offered a way to continue contributing. No one is left behind.

As I step away from day-to-day management and return to independently creating and innovating, I will continue to moderate my old series and be available to all of you and Amazon for guidance and support.

Thanks team – I wouldn’t have done any of this without each and every one of you.
Mark Burnett.

Note by Mike Hopkins

Hello team –

As you just read, Mark Burnett has decided to leave Amazon and MGM to resume his work as an independent creator and producer. I wanted to follow up by thanking him for his countless contributions to our success and, on a personal level, for his partnership and advice throughout the merger process. I know you will all agree that he is one of the most creative, creative and prolific television producers in our industry, and we have been very fortunate to have him on our team.

Mark’s stepping aside of course raises both opportunities and questions about how we should organize going forward. You’ll hear more about this soon.

I am incredibly proud of the outstanding TV and film content we produce, and look forward to 2023 and beyond, when we, as a fully integrated team, continue to build on this legacy. We thank you for all your commitment and dedication as we head towards a dynamic and successful future together.

Mike


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