Paula Kaplan Exits As Head Of Talent For Nickelodeon

EXCLUSIVE: Viacom veteran Paula Kaplan is leaving Nickelodeon where she most recently served as EVP of Nickelodeon Talent, I have learned.

I hear this was a personal decision Kaplan made, and she just informed her colleagues of her pending departure. It comes after Kaplan’s team helped mount the 2021 Kids Choice Awards ceremony this past weekend, which featured top talent. A new leadership for Nickelodeon’s talent department is expected to be announced shortly.

“Very few people get to work at an amazing company, much less get to work for the same company twice,” Kaplan said in the internal note, a copy of which was obtained by Deadline. “I have been incredibly fortunate to spend 25 years working with remarkable people, but I have decided now is the time for me to explore other creative opportunities. This year has revolutionized our industry and I am excited about all the possibilities that are unfolding. To ensure that this transition goes smoothly, I will be available until the end of April.”

In her first stint at Nickelodeon, from 1993 to 2014, Kaplan, an accomplished and respected talent executive, held a string of roles at the network that included EVP, Original Programming & Live Events; EVP, Talent/General Manager, West Coast; SVP, Talent; and VP Talent Relations. During her tenure she developed such young talent as Ariana Grande, Kenan Thompson, Emma Roberts and Nick Cannon, oversaw production on Nickelodeon’s Kids’ Choice Awards; and launched Nick’s music footprint by spearheading a joint venture with Sony Music encompassing TV series, albums and tours.

She went on to work for Brian Robbins’ AwesomenessTV As Chief Talent Officer and Head of Live Content from 2015 to 2018, where she led the company’s talent initiatives and casting strategies for film, series and new business opportunities. Kaplan was instrumental in the success of Awesomeness Film’s production of To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before for Netflix, which became one of the streaming service’s most-viewed original film.

Kaplan returned to Nickelodeon in 2019, reuniting with Robbins, now President of Nickelodeon.

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