ITV drama boss leaving broadcaster to launch production company

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ITV director of drama Laura Mackie, the commissioner of shows such as Downton Abbey and Whitechapel, is to leave the commercial broadcaster to set up her own production company.

She will be joined in the venture by ITV’s controller of drama commissioning, Sally Haynes. Both will leave the broadcaster at the end of June.

ITV director of television Peter Fincham said Mackie and Haynes had enjoyed “a tremendous run at ITV”, where their commissioning credits also include Scott and Bailey, Vera, Marchlands and The Suspicions of Mr Whicher.

He added that their legacy is an “incredibly strong drama slate for 2013 and beyond”.

Mackie, who joined ITV as controller of drama commissioning in 2006 before becoming director in 2007, said: "Sally and I have loved our seven years at ITV and are incredibly proud of the dramas that we've commissioned with Peter. The range of our output from Downton Abbey and Mr Selfridge through to Scott and Bailey and Appropriate Adult are testimony to the ambition of the channel.  We're sad to go but know that ITV drama will continue to go from strength to strength."

Prior to joining ITV Mackie was head of drama serials at the BBC.

Haynes became controller of drama at ITV in 2006 having previously worked with Mackie at the BBC as senior executive producer.

When they leave, Steve November, ITV’s head of drama series, will become acting director of drama.