‘Love Island’ Executive Producer Simon Thomas, Michelle Byars Promoted at ITV Entertainment

Simon Thomas, veteran ITV America unscripted and international producer, has been named president of ITV Entertainment and will also serve as ITV America’s head of international programming.

Thomas, previously executive VP of current programming, west coast, for ITV America, has executive produced all U.S. seasons of “Love Island,” as well as new series “My Mom, Your Dad” and the upcoming “Rat in the Kitchen.” Earlier, he worked on “I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!” for U.K. broadcaster ITV, the original U.K. version of “Love Island,” as well as “Big Brother” and “Beauty and the Geek” for Australia’s Network 10 and Channel 7, respectively.

In his new role, reporting into ITV America chief creative officer David Eilenberg, Thomas will run ITV Entertainment’s development and production slate of original series and international formats and will also oversee production of any ITV America series sold to U.S. buyers and produced abroad.

Reporting to Thomas is Michelle Byars, promoted from VP to senior VP of development at ITV Entertainment. Byars now leads ITV Entertainment’s slate of series in the works and she will also develop and adapt global formats for the U.S. Previously at Turner Entertainment, Byars helped relaunch TBS’s unscripted business with “Drop the Mic,” “Snoop Dogg Presents The Joker’s Wild,” “The Misery Index” and “Shaq Life.”

ITV America CEO David George said: “With the sweeping globalization of the marketplace, we’ve been focusing our business on selling and producing on a global level, in any territory. Simon has worked on some of the biggest successes in unscripted, steering shows in the U.S. and abroad, and navigating international IP domestically. Leaning further into this strategy to solidify our position as a global content leader, Simon is the ideal person to head up ITV Entertainment and grow our U.S. production business around the world.”

Eilenberg said: “Simon has the ability to balance prime creative with problem solving on the ground – always an elusive skillset, but even more so now with buyers wanting breakthrough shows that can travel globally.”

“With Simon leading ITV Entertainment and spearheading international for ITV America, and Michelle driving development, ITVE is perfectly positioned to bring exciting new formats and franchises to buyers and audiences worldwide,” Eilenberg added.

ITV Entertainment is one of six production labels under parent company ITV America – the other five are Leftfield Pictures, Sirens Media, Thinkfactory Media, High Noon Entertainment and Good Caper Content. Adam Sher is president of ITV America.

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