EXCLUSIVE: Three and a half decades into his career as a playwright and film and TV writer, Jon Robin Baitz has never been busier, coming off one series, with three others in production or preproduction. Baitz has now signed a big multi-year deal with 20th Television, the studio behind the four series, which all hail from Ryan Murphy Productions. Noone is commenting but I hear the pact — said to be in the premium top range for writing talent — spans five years.

Under the deal, Baitz will develop, write and executive produce original series with 20th Television, a part of Disney Television Studios, for Disney Entertainment Television, as well as collaborate with Murphy on more projects.

The overall agreement comes on the heels of FX/20th Television/Ryan Murphy Prods.’ limited series Feud: Capote Vs. The Swans, on which Baitz served as an executive producer/showrunner and wrote every episode.

His upcoming slate includes three 20th TV series on which he is working with Murphy: the Untitled Kim Kardashian legal drama for Hulu, starring Kardashian; Dr. Odyssey drama for ABC, starring Joshua Jackson, Don Johnson and Phillipa Soo; and Grotesquerie for FX starring Niecy Nash-Betts, Courtney B. Vance and Lesley Manville.

“Robbie is a dazzling storyteller and a true luminary, and we are delighted that he will call 20th Television his new studio home,” said Karey Burke, president of 20th Television. “We were blown away by his recent work with Ryan Murphy on Feud: Capote Vs. The Swans, and are thrilled he is already working with us on other shows including Grotesquerie, Dr. Odyssey and our Untitled Kim Kardashian legal drama.”

Baitz created Brothers & Sisters, which ran for five seasons on ABC from 2007 to 2012. His other credits include miniseries The Slap for NBC, and writing episodes for The West Wing, Alias, and Showtime’s noir anthology Fallen Angels. On the film side, his screenplays include The Substance of Fire, People I Know, and Stonewall.

Baitz received a Tony nomination for the Broadway production of Other Desert Cities. He also is a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist (A Fair Country and Other Desert Cities), a Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts fellow, and an American Academy of Arts & Letters Award winner.

“Dana Walden, Karey Burke, Eric Schrier, John Landgraf, and their teams are smart and wise collaborators. Ryan Murphy is telling an alternate history of America – cautionary tales with jokes, romance, glitz and terror, almost an American Grimm’s, anarchic and funny, and I love his rep company of actors – an impossibly versatile lot,” Baitz said. “After some 30 years of trying to de-code how TV shows work, I’m a bit clearer. Not quite sure about how to juggle three or four at the same time – maybe meditation, yoga and martinis, only one of which I am any good at. I’m eager to justify Disney’s and Ryan’s faith in me and embarrass no-one.”

Baitz is repped by CAA, Manage-ment and attorney Jamie Mandelbaum.



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