Former Sony Pictures Television Chief Steve Mosko is in discussions with Sinclair Broadcast Group to take on a key role, several outlets reported over the weekend. The Financial Times initially reported the news on Sunday morning.
Sinclair is in the process of acquiring Tribune Media for $3.9 billion, and Mosko is being considered for a leadership role at the new conglomerate, tapping both his programming and operations expertise. Assuming the merger goes through, which appears likely under this Republican administration, Sinclair will own more than 200 TV stations covering 72% of the U.S.
The deal is being made possible because the FCC, under new chairman Ajit Pai, is resuming the so-called UHF discount, which allows station groups to count stations that operate on UHF frequencies at half power, thus allowing those groups to own more stations. In the digital broadcasting era, however, stations on UHF frequencies are as or more powerful than stations operating on VHF frequencies, making the UHF discount technically irrelevant.
Mosko was tapped to oversee all of Sony Pictures Television’s domestic TV operations in 2002, and departed the studio last June. During his tenure, SPT produced such series as AMC’s Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, NBC’s The Blacklist, Showtime’s Masters of Sex, Netflix’s Bloodline and many other shows.
He has a long-standing relationship with the Smith family that owns Sinclair. He got his start at a Sinclair’s flagship station in Baltimore in the late 1970s, according to the New York Times.
[Image courtesy of Variety]