Albie Hecht, president of film and TV entertainment for Nickelodeon, has been appointed president of cable network The New TNN. The veteran producer has overseen the development and production of such hit animated series as Rugrats, SpongeBob SquarePants and The Wild Thornberrys. In the new position, he will report to Herb Scannell, president of Nickelodeon, TV Land and The New TNN.
Under Hecht’s leadership, the New TNN will once again go through a makeover. The cabler, once known as The Nashville Network, was acquired by MTV Networks and went after a younger, more affluent audience as The National Network. The current marketing plan is to brand it as television’s first entertainment network for men. Original programming will cover a broad spectrum of genres, including animation, video games, men’s health, finance and reality programming. Hecht will introduce the 2003 development and production slate in the coming weeks.
In addition to current male-friendly offerings Star Trek, CSI, the James Bond film library and the WWE, TNN plans to launch an original adult animation block highlighted by the return of Ren & Stimpy. Creator John Krisfaluci is producing new episodes for the network.
Also joining the provocative new adult animation lineup is Stan Lee’s Striperella, starring Pamela Anderson, and Gary the Rat, starring Kelsey Grammer. Additional animated series will be announced at a later date.
Later this year, TNN will televise the first Video Game Awards, honoring the best video games as voted by players and fans across the country.
As part of this transition, Diane Robina will leave her current role as general manager of The New TNN.
Before joining MTV Networks in 1993, Hecht was the founding principal and executive producer for New York-based television production company Chauncey Street Prods. In 1997, he built Nickelodeon Animation Studios and took over Nickelodeon Movies, which he will continue to oversee.