Jeffrey R. Schlesinger has been President, Warner Bros. International Television, since 1994, overseeing all activities of the division, including production, distribution, investment and strategy. Schlesinger is also responsible for the Company’s strategic operations outside the United States, which are handled by a network of field offices in Australia, Canada, China, France, Russia, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, Miami, Spain and the United Kingdom.
Warner Bros. International Television is the world’s leading distributor of programming, licensing more than 61,000 hours of television programming and movies dubbed or subtitled in more than 40 languages to broadcasters in more than 175 countries.
The division handles distribution to all international television media, including broadcast, pay cable, basic cable, satellite, subscription video-on-demand and digital platforms for all product from Warner Bros. Pictures, Warner Bros. Television, Warner Horizon Television, Castle Rock Entertainment, Telepictures Productions, New Line Cinema, Warner Bros. Animation, Cartoon Network Studios, Shed Media, Golden Harvest (a library of 168 Cantonese language films), the Lorimar film and television library, and the Turner library (Turner Pictures, the classic MGM library and selected RKO titles, Ruby-Spears and Hanna-Barbera animation).
Under Schlesinger’s leadership, Warner Bros. has broadened its footprint in the international marketplace via the creation of both the Warner Bros. International Television Production and Warner Bros. International Branded Services units.
In 2009, Warner Bros. International Television Production was established with a mandate to acquire or build operating production companies in major territories around the world to create locally produced versions of programs owned by the Studio, to develop original local programming on a market by market basis, and to identify international programming formats for acquisition by the Studio. In 2010, the International Television Production unit spearheaded the acquisition by Warner Bros. Television Group of a majority stake in Shed Media, one of the UK’s largest and most successful independent production and distribution companies, with operations in both the UK and the U.S.
Established in 2008, Warner Bros. International Branded Services has embarked upon a strategy of creating Warner Bros.–branded linear and non-linear, video-on-demand and branded programming services around the world, under the WarnerTV banner. The WarnerTV branded services — including subscription-based (SVOD) and free (FVOD) offerings — provide consumers with around-the-clock, on-demand access to top quality programming produced and distributed by the Studio.
The company’s WarnerTV on-demand services has launched 86 different services in 35 territories across the globe on platforms such as Top Up TV, Talk Talk TV, Virgin Media and BT Vision in the U.K.; FASTWEB in Italy; Videoload and Maxdome in Germany; Imagenio in Spain; Telekom Austria in Austria; Elisa in Finland; Ziggo in the Netherlands; vod.onet.pl in Poland; Free in France; J:COM and USEN Corporation’s GyaO in Japan; and QOOK TV in Korea, among others. The WarnerFilms SVOD service, exclusively featuring theatrical motion pictures from the Studio, has launched in the UK on both BT Vision and LOVEFiLM, and in Finland on the Elisa platform.
Additionally, Warner Bros. International Branded Services operates the highly successful linear Warner Channel throughout Latin America, debuted WB India in 2009, and launched a WarnerTV-branded 24-hour, linear general entertainment channel throughout Asia in 2010.
The company also holds equity positions in Australia’s The Movie Network Channel, which distributes seven premium pay television channels.
Prior to being named President, Schlesinger served as Senior Vice President, International Television Distribution from 1984–1994, at both Warner Bros. International Television Distribution and Lorimar Telepictures (acquired by Warner Bros. Entertainment in 1990). Before that, he served as Vice President, International Sales at Telepictures Distribution.
Before joining Telepictures, Schlesinger was National Sales Manager for the Astral Television division of Astral/Bellevue Pathe (1982–83), responsible for the distribution of programs in Canada for 20th Century Fox, Telepictures, dick clark productions, Rank and EMI Films. From 1979 to 1982, he served as Syndication Sales Manager for MCA/Universal TV in Canada, after serving as an international sales executive in the company’s New York office.
In 1978 and 1979, Schlesinger worked at The Children’s Television Workshop as the International Production and Distribution Manager, responsible for the worldwide distribution of Sesame Street, as well as the servicing of the series’ numerous co-productions internationally.
Schlesinger began his career as a film editor for CBS’ highly acclaimed, top-rated 60 Minutes. He is a graduate of New York University with a bachelor of fine arts degree in film production.