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Nickelodeon Fires Animation Chief Amid Management Shake-Up

The New York Times “Behind the Screens, Between the Lines” weblog reports that Nickelodeon veteran Brown Johnson has been removed as president of animation and head of preschool programming as part of a larger management shake-up intended to reverse a sharp decline in ratings for the network. Johnson is credited with bringing kidvid hits from Blue’s Clues to Dora the Explorer to Nickelodeon, and is also credited with “the pause,” where a character makes a choreographed pause during a show to allow children to actively respond to the TV. In other management moves, Russell Hicks was elevated to president of content development nad production, Margie Cohn was named to the new position of president of content development, and Paula Kaplan will serve as executive vice president of current series.

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