Bela Bajaria, who took on a new leadership role at Netflix in March this year, has landed a coveted spot on the Hollywood Reporter’s ‘100 Most Powerful People in Entertainment 2019’ list.
Bajaria, who leads the streaming service’s international non-English TV originals, shares the No. 7 spot with Netflix’s Cindy Holland, vice president of original content and head of film, Scott Stuber.
Bob Iger, CEO of the Walt Disney Co., takes the top spot for the fourth year in a row. The list also includes names such as Ava DuVernay, Oprah Winfrey, former President and First Lady Barack and Michelle Obama, Jennifer Lopez, Zendaya, Brad Pitt and Leonardo Di Caprio.
Bajaria, who was tapped by Netflix in November 2016 as its vice president for content, in her new role, oversees scripted and unscripted series in all international markets where Netflix is available, with the exception of Asia but including India.
Bajaria, 48, who, notes the publication, ushered in unscripted wins like “Queer Eye” and “Nailed It” in her former position, moved into a new role in March as the international head, overseeing all non-English-language originals and content teams in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, India and Latin America as the company’s focus becomes increasingly global.
Prior to joining Netflix, Bajaria served as president of Universal Television, overseeing creative programming for the studio and producing such hit series as “Master of None” and “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” for Netflix; “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” for Fox; “The Mindy Project” for Fox and Hulu; “Superstore” for NBC, and “Bates Motel” for A&E, among several others.
The Indian American executive developed “Gypsy,” starring Naomi Watts, for Netflix which premiered in 2017; as well as “Pure Genius” for CBS and “The Good Place” for NBC.
Bajaria has served as president of the industry organization Hollywood Radio and Television Society. (Read an earlier India-West story in which Bajaria spoke about her rise in the entertainment industry here: https://bit.ly/2tTBV3h.)