ABC News has launched ABC News Studios, a premium, narrative nonfiction originals producer and commissioner of feature documentary films, series and specials. David Sloan has been tapped as senior executive producer and creative lead of the venture.
The studio already has three feature docs and 15 series in production across ABC, Hulu, Disney+ and National Geographic. Its current slate features projects from filmmakers Dawn Porter, Irene Taylor, Brian Grazer, Ron Howard and Stanley Nelson.
In an announcement to ABC News staff, president Kim Godwin congratulated Sloan on the new role, which will include overseeing production and completion on ABC News Studios programming. He will report to Mike Kelley, ABC News Studios lead, who reports to Reena Mehta, senior vice president of streaming and digital content.
Throughout Sloan’s tenure at ABC News, the exec has received nine Emmys, four Peabodys and a duPont Award for his exceptional producing. Most recently he worked as senior executive producer, of Network Primetime Content, managing all of ABC News’ primetime programming including news specials (like Diane Sawyer’s), “Truth and Lies” and “20/20.”
Meanwhile, Mehta brings to ABC News Studios an extensive background in content strategy and planning from HBOMax and Nickelodeon, and Kelley has experience in global partnerships and distribution from ITV Studios and strategy and programming at PBS. Jacqueline Glover is head of documentary for Onyx Collective and oversaw the initial lineup of feature docs for ABC News Films.
“ABC News Studios is a testament to our strategic investment in and commitment to meet the audience’s demand for bold storytelling and straightforward journalism whenever, wherever and on whatever device,” Godwin said in a statement. “I’m excited to leverage the power and integrity of the No. 1 news network in America to create premium and distinctive content for all communities.”
The studio soft-launched in 2021 and early 2022 with successful projects across ABC and Hulu, from documentary films like “Aftershock,” “Jacinta” and “Leave No Trace” to series including “City of Angels | City of Death,” “The Fatal Flaw: A Special Edition of 20/20,” “Keeper of the Ashes: The Oklahoma Girl Scout Murders,” “Let the World See,” “Mormon No More” and “Wild Crime” to specials like “The Housewife and the Hustler,” “The Ivana Trump Story: The First Wife,” “The Kardashians” and “Truth and Lies: The Last Gangster,” as well as George Stephanopoulos Productions’ “Alec Baldwin Unscripted,” “ The Informant: Fear and Faith in the Heartland” and “Out of the Shadows: The Man Behind The Steele Dossier.”
ABC News Studios’ upcoming docuseries include: Hulu’s “The Age of Influence,” “Death in the Dorms,” “Demons and Saviors,” “Grails,” “Impact x Nightline,” “Murder U (working title),” “The Murders Before the Marathon,” Untitled George Stephanopoulos Project, Untitled Scott Johnson Project, “Web of Death” and “Wild Crime.” There’s also ABC’s 25th anniversary “Cinderella” special, “The Con,” “Superstar” and “Explorer” from Nat Geo. The following documentaries are also in progress: “The Lady Bird Diaries (working title)” and “Sound of the Police” from Hulu and Disney+’s Untitled Iwájú Documentary.