Title: CEO, Rainbow Media
Last Year: #32
Education: U of WI
Why Him? We don’t get the sense that Sapan is a micromanager, so we’re thinking his team deserves the kudos for Mad Men, basic cable’s first series to capture a best drama Emmy. But credit Sapan for assembling that team and shaping Rainbow’s vision. Sapan’s also a leader in day-and-date windows for VOD. Two years ago, he launched IFC’s day/date service, "In Theaters." Now in more than 45mln cable HHs, IT releases 24 films/year simultaneously in theaters and VOD. Sapan’s empire grew in ’08 with the $496mln acquisition of Sundance, making Rainbow the world’s largest aggregator of independent and specialty films. And a plug for Sapan’s art-from-the-trash collection, whose proceeds often go to Cable Positive. We’re just a bit insulted our doodles haven’t found their way to his walls yet.
Worth Watching: We’re curious to see what Sapan does with Sundance, but watch the globe, too, as Rainbow plans to launch its first European channel in ’09.
There are few ways to top having the first basic cable series to win a best drama Emmy.
Favorite Restaurant: Home
Favorite Show Not On My Network: This American Life
In ’09 I Resolve To: Stop digging through garbage looking for art
Best Business Advice Received: Take three & let the next one go by (Casey Stengel)
I Wish My Kids Would: Look up from the TV when I come home
My Least Favorite Word: Incentivize
Favorite Sports Team: Knicks
Last Book Read: Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris