Larry Barron, a veteran unscripted producer and executive, passed away suddenly on December 24. He was believed to be 55.
Barron co-created and executive produced alongside Mark Burnett, Ben Newmark and Dan Newmark the 2016 Fox reality series Coupled. He co-created and exec produced with Bill Diggins and Rozonda ‘Chilli’ Thomas the 2010 VH1 unscripted series What Cilli Wants, starring Thomas, and also co-created/executive produced the GSN shows Idiotest and Emogenius. What Chilli Wants stems from Barron’s four-year stint as SVP at FremanteMedia.
In 2002-03, Barron served as a producer on CBS’ The Amazing Race, a co-executive producer on Fox’s Paradise Hotel and a consultant on UPN’s America’s Top Model. He then segued to the executive ranks as VP of alternative programs for UPN, overseeing development and day-to-day production of reality series for the network.
“Every time I’ve worked with Larry, he brought a valuable ‘big picture’ perspective as well as an attention to detail, both of which are important qualities to me in a programming executive,” Ghen Maynard, former SVP of alternative series development and creative strategies at CBS, who also oversaw UPN’s unscripted programming, said at the time of Barron’s appointment in 2003.
Earlier in his career, Barron worked as a producer on CBS’ AFP: American’s Fighter Pilot for Ridley and Tony Scott, and on USA’s Combat Missions for Mark Burnett.
In addition to building his own career, Barron was a mentor to many in the industry, including Justin Lacob, Amy Takahara, Jen Erwin, Leela Pon and Malene Sam.
Veteran reality producer Anthony Dominici, currently executive producer/showrunner of Fox’s breakout reality hit LEGO Masters, paid tribute to Barron in an Instagram post Friday.
“I first met Larry Barron on Amazing Race— I was his ‘boss.’ When I moved over to run Top Model, he soon became my network executive— my capital B Boss, and a good one at that,” Dominici wrote. “For years after, through many TV ups and downs Larry and I remained friends. We developed numerous projects and spent hours toiling over the perfect language to put into a pitch deck… Larry was a fierce motivator, a rock solid partner, and a great friend. Always with a kind word of support.”
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