Title: Executive vice president, miniseries and motion pictures for television, NBC Entertainment; executive vice president, long-form programming, NBC Studios
Born: Chicago, 1953
Education: B.A. in elementary education, University of Arizona
Most Admired Person: Her husband, producer David Israel; Don Ohlmeyer, president, NBC West Coast
Career Turning Point: Working for producer Alan W. Landsberg, where "I learned how to sell."
Hobbies: Reading, movies
Personal: Married, no children
By FRANK SWERTLOW
With more than two dozen movies in development for the 1998-99 TV season, including an unprecedented 10 miniseries, Lindy DeKoven of NBC Entertainment more than qualifies as a Hollywood mogul. Indeed, the major studios only average between 15 and 25 films a year.
DeKoven is one of network television's highest-ranking women executives, controlling an annual budget estimated at between $200 million and $300 million.
During her reign as head of NBC's movie and miniseries division, the network has been the top-rated broadcaster for adults 18-49, the key demographic for advertisers. Last year, NBC had 12 of the top-rated 20 movies in this demographic.
DeKoven, who joined NBC in 1993, also has been bringing theatrical film producers, directors and actors to the Peacock network. They include "Platoon" producer Arnold Kopelson, "Armageddon" producer Jerry Bruckheimer and Kevin Costner.
While she takes pitches from producers, she often initiates ideas for films. One example is the upcoming miniseries "Not Between Brothers," which is being produced by Costner. DeKoven initiated that project by placing what she calls a "cold call" to see if the actor-director-producer would be interested.
Usually, DeKoven's lieutenants take preliminary pitch meetings and if they like the idea, the project moves up the chain of command to where DeKoven decides its fate.
Before joining NBC, DeKoven spent two years at Lorimar Television as vice president for movies and miniseries. Prior to that, she was a vice president for creative affairs at Landsberg Co., where she developed TV movies.
Question: What is your typical day like?
Answer: Putting out fires. There are a lot of internal meetings starting at about 8:30. I'm here to 7:30 (p.m.). Most of the day is composed of a lot of internal meetings, a lot of conversations with the promotion department, driving them crazy 24 hours a day. It is making sure all the support systems are really working on behalf of the films.
Q: What films have influenced you?
A: I am a big fan of the big movies "Gandhi," "Apocalypse Now." I like movies that have something to say. When you walk out of the theater, you feel good or you have learned something.
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