In television, it pays to have faith — and Mark Burnett has enough to spare. Burnett's devotion to his shows has led to a string of hits, an enviable track record that makes him TV Guide Magazine's Producer of the Year. In 2013, his successes included the triumph of NBC's ratings behemoth The Voice, the ongoing growth of ABC's critically acclaimed inventor competition Shark Tank and the steady performance of CBS's landmark Survivor, which was just renewed for Seasons 29 and 30.
But it was History's The Bible that made Burnett one of TV's anointed. The 10-part miniseries averaged 13.1 million viewers for its opener last March, turning reality guru Burnett into a player in the scripted world as well. The limited-run show also helped spark the industry's revived interest in big-event programming and opened the door for Burnett to sell several more scripted ideas, including A.D.: After the Bible and the period drama Plymouth to NBC, in addition to an adaptation of the novel The Dovekeepers to CBS. Also in the works at NBC: the reality show Space Race.
"My approach is family-friendly — male, female, young and old," Burnett says. "I'm a network television producer; I'm not into narrow-casting. I'm very grateful, and I think I've learned how to deliver to the audience what is expected."