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Amazon exodus continues with Lewis

Amazon Studios’ head of comedy, drama and virtual reality has become the latest top exec to exit the retail giant’s entertainment arm.

Joe Lewis

Joe Lewis, who was promoted to the position earlier this year, has left the company in the wake of his former boss Roy Price’s resignation last week.

Lewis is a former director of production at 20th Century Fox and joined Amazon Studios in 2012, overseeing shows including Transparent and Mozart in the Jungle.

No reason has been given for his resignation and Amazon is in negotiations with Lewis over a production deal moving forwards, according to reports.

US media also suggest the future of the streamer’s unscripted boss, Conrad Riggs, is in doubt as the executive shakeup continues.

Lewis’s departure follows tech giant Apple expanding its original programming team by appointing Morgan Wandell, Amazon’s head of international productions, as head of international creative development at the end of last week.

Sharon Tal Yguado, head of event series at Amazon Studios, will now oversee all scripted development at the firm, reporting to Amazon Studios boss and chief operating officer Albert Cheng, who took over duties from Price earlier this month.

In related news, Amazon is lining up a trio of half-hour pilots that will be made available exclusively on Amazon Prime Video from November 10.

Love You More features New York City cabaret star Bridget Everett (Patti Cake$) as a counsellor at an independent-living residence for young adults with Down’s syndrome.

The pilot has been directed by Bobcat Goldthwait (God Bless America), with Michael Patrick King (Sex & the City) as showrunner. It comes from MPK Productions in association with Warner Bros Television and Amazon Studios.

Sea Oak, meanwhile, is based on the based on a short story of the same name from creator and author George Saunders and is produced by Amazon Studios.

It tells the story of a working-class woman, played by Glenn Close, who dies tragically in a home invasion but comes back to life full of rage and determined to get the life she never had.

Amazon Studios is also producing The Climb, which comes from Diarra Kilpatrick and The Mark Gordon Company. The show is a comedy set against the backdrop of a rapidly changing Detroit.

Earlier this year, Price said the company would commission fewer pilots and make more straight-to-series orders in the future.

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