Amazon Studios comedy and drama series development chief Joe Lewis is leaving the company, reportedly caught up in the sexual harassment scandal that led to the departure last week of his boss, studio chief Roy Price.
Lewis’ departure was confirmed by the major showbiz dailies, including Variety. Amazon Studios reps didn’t immediately respond to FierceCable’s inquiry for comment. According to the trade, Lewis is currently in talks with Amazon for a production deal.
The former Comedy Central and Fox executive was credited for developing two of the most popular original series on Amazon’s SVOD service, “Mozart in the Jungle” and “Transparent.” In fact, based on the success of these shows, Lewis was placed into an expanded role just a year ago.
However, he was being investigated by the same outside firm hired by Amazon to look into Price’s alleged on-the-job sexual misconduct. Among issues drawing scrutiny for Lewis: He reportedly pressured producers of the Amazon original “The Tick” to cast his girlfriend, Yara Martinez, as a series regular.
Replacing Lewis will be Sharon Tal Yguado, the former Fox International Studios head who joined Amazon in February, who will take over scripted programming. She’ll report to Albert Cheng, the former ABC digital executive who now serves as COO and acting president of Amazon’s now very much roiled entertainment division.