Rich Cronin, former president of Fox Family Channel, has been approached
about joining Game Show Network, sources said Monday.
GSN is about to come under a new ownership structure, with Liberty Digital
Inc. slated to close its deal to acquire 50 percent of the channel from Sony
Pictures Entertainment Inc. in late January or February.
Before finalizing the acquisition, Liberty Digital is evaluating the network
and examining how it can enhance its operations.
One goal is to double GSN's distribution to 50 million to 60 million
As a result of the sale and the revamping of GSN, Liberty Digital and Sony
are talking with several executives, including Cronin, about coming on board at
the service, several sources said.
Liberty Digital CEO Lee Masters wouldn't comment specifically on Cronin or
anyone else possibly being recruited.
'As part of a public company and our due diligence, we're looking at every
aspect of the business,' Masters said. 'And as painful as it is to discuss,
management would be part of that. We want to be sure we're firing on all
Masters stressed that no final decisions had been made yet about whether
there will be any big changes in GSN's management. In fact, no such move can be
made until Liberty Digital closes its deal to acquire its stake in GSN.
Michael Fleming, the network's current and longtime president, and his
management team 'have done a good job,' Masters added.
Cronin, a veteran of TV Land and Nick at Nite, abruptly exited Fox Family
last May. He was the executive in charge of relaunching The Family Channel as
Fox Family Channel in 1998, with virtually all new programming, and its ratings
Cronin couldn't be reached for comment Monday.
GSN, currently at roughly 30 million subscribers, has struggled to gain
distribution in a tough environment. Masters has said that Liberty Digital not
only plans to increase the amount of interactivity the network incorporates,
allowing viewers to play along online, but to broaden its content beyond just