EVP & Head of Programming, Lifetime
Since joining Lifetime last May, Gateley has elevated the network’s stature both inside and out, with her oversight of movies, scripted series and unscripted series. Her team launched the first two seasons of critically acclaimed scripted series “UnReal,” and Gateley’s idea of releasing the first four episodes on digital to help hook viewers was a huge success. Her stamp is all over Lifetime’s “Fempire” rebrand, and internally during the past year Lifetime tripled the number of women directors hired to helm scripted series projects—55 percent vs. the industry average of 12 percent. Gateley brought the Billboard Women in Music event to Lifetime, and her unscripted slate for Q1 2016 showed record growth among unscripted series premieres. What advice would she give her 13-year-old self? “The same advice I give to my 12- and 14-year-old girls: Please don’t care so much about what people think about you. “
What advice would you give your 13-year-old self?
The same advice I give to my 12- and 14-year-old girls: Please don’t care so much about what people think about you. Very few of the people in your life right now are going to matter to you in five years so don’t put so much stock in what they think or say. Have your own opinion about things and don’t be afraid to express it.
Which current programming best reflects the kind of women’s roles you like to see and why?
Of course I have to say “UnReal”–not because it’s a Lifetime show–but because I truly believe ‘Rachel’ and ‘Quinn’ are two of the best characters ever created for television, female or male, and Shiri Appleby and Constance Zimmer perfectly play them. I also love Carrie in “Homeland” and Maura Tierney’s portrayal of Helen Solloway. All strong women.
What’s been the biggest story in cable this year?
True crime limited series (both in scripted and unscripted). Of course, Lifetime has been doing true crime successfully for years.