Exclusive: Expectation’s drama chief to exit

Peter Fincham and Tim Hincks’ prodco Expectation is on the look-out for a new drama chief after it emerged that Kirstie Macdonald is set to step down from the role, TBI has learned.

Macdonald joined the London-based producer in 2017, soon after the company’s formation, with a remit to establish its scripted output as creative director of drama.

However TBI understands she will be leaving the company at the end of the year, after overseeing the launch of Expectation’s drama Guilt later this summer.

The four-part series, written by Neil Forsyth, is being produced for BBC Scotland and BBC Two with fellow UK prodco Happy Tramp North.

Macdonald, whose next move is not yet known, joined Expectation from ITV Studios-owned World Productions, where she worked on shows including Line of Duty for the BBC and Sky Atlantic drama Save Me.

She was also an executive producer on ITV duo Dark Angel and In Plain Sight, having begun her career as a scriptwriter in 1999 and working on series such as The Bill, New Tricks and The Innocence Project.

A spokesperson for Expectation told TBI: “Kirstie has been an integral part in the launch of Expectation’s drama slate. We wish her well in her future endeavours.”

Aside from Guilt, Macdonald also has a slate of projects in development at Expectation and has struck deals for novels including Richard Roper’s recently published book Something To Live For.

Former ITV chief Fincham and ex-Endemol Shine Group president Hincks launched Expectation in 2016, with Macdonald among the early hires for the well-financed company.

It also appointed ex-Endemol Shine execs Nick Mather and Nick Samell-Smith to oversee entertainment, with Channel 4’s Nerys Evans looking after comedy. Elsewhere, Colin Barr took on factual and factual drama, while Amy Flanagan was appointed to run factual.

The company is backed by BBC Studios, which took a 24.9% stake in the production outfit shortly after its launch. It produces both scripted and non-scripted programming, and operates six departments across drama, comedy, factual entertainment, entertainment, reality and factual.

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