Spielberg, Scorsese To Help Curate TCM
Warner Bros. Discovery has changed up its plans for Turner Classic Movies (TCM) with longtime programming executive Charles Tabesh set to remain in his post.
In addition, the company has set a partnership with filmmakers Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese and Paul Thomas Anderson to help curate content for TCM.
Tabesh is a 25-year TCM executive and has been senior VP of programming and content strategy at TCM since 2005. He had been slated to leave as part of the downsizing of the network’s staff.
He now stays in his post and will report to Warner Bros. film chiefs Mike De Luca and Pam Abdy. Spielberg, Scorsese and Anderson said in a joint statement Wednesday:
“We have already begun working on ideas with Mike and Pam, both true film enthusiasts who share a passion and reverence for classic cinema that is the hallmark of the TCM community.
This unique arrangement, initiated by David Zaslav, reflects his commitment to honoring the TCM legacy while also involving us on curation and programming.
We are thrilled that longtime programmer Charlie Tabesh will be staying with TCM and gratified to know that the team is focused on preserving TCM’s mission of celebrating our rich movie history while at the same time ensuring that future generations of filmmakers and film lovers have TCM as a valuable resource.”
News of Tabesh and TCM general manager Pola Changnon’s departures drew outrage from the industry, including the three directors who then had an emergency phone meeting with WBD CEO David Zaslav.
Under the new structure, De Luca and Abdy will curate and oversee all creative onscreen at TCM in tandem with the three directors. Distribution and tech aspects of TCM will remain with WB Discovery’s U.S. Networks group overseen by Kathleen Finch.
A Warner Bros. Discovery spokesperson said in a statement Wednesday: “TCM is a cultural treasure which WBD is fully committed to safeguarding, supporting, and investing in for the future” and adds that the company has increased TCM’s content budget by 30% for 2023.