Frankel takes over for Amy Hartwick, who stepped down in July following a significant reorganization at the Disney-owned studio that saw Patrick Moran exit the company. Frankel was previously the vice president of current series for ABC Studios, a role she has held since 2015.
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“ABC Studios is 100% talent-focused,” said Jonnie Davis, president of ABC Studios. “Melanie’s long-standing relationships in the creative community and her incredible ability to support and nurture talent at all levels make her the ideal person to run our comedy team.”
Frankel most recently oversaw the launch of the new ABC Studios series “Stumptown,” the Cobie Smulders-led drama that debuted on ABC last week. She also served as the current executive on shows like “American Housewife” and “A Million Little Things.” Prior to her current role at ABC, Frankel worked in the ABC Studios comedy department from 2007-2011. She then left to become head of comedy development for USA Network, where she developed shows such as “Sirens” and “Playing House.” She previously worked in development at companies like Imagine Entertainment and Grammnet Productions.
ABC Studios was reorganized as part of a broader change at Disney Television Studios, which now includes ABC Studios, 20th Century Fox Television, Fox 21 Television Studios and FX Productions. Davis, formerly the president of 20th TV, took over ABC Studios while Carolyn Cassidy was promoted to run 20th TV alongside Howard Kurtzman. All report to Craig Hunegs, president of Disney Television Studios.