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Laughs only part of ‘South Park’ story


Debbie Liebling (COM ’81), the former president of production at Universal Pictures, reflects on her years spent as executive producer for the animated hit television series South Park.

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Deborah Liebling

Deborah Liebling is the former president of production at Universal Pictures and the former executive vice president of production at 20th Century Fox. To date she has developed and shepherded the creative direction of many features including the Oscar-nominated Borat! Cultural Learning of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan; the summer hit Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story starring Vince Vaughn and Ben Stiller; Betty Thomas’ teen comedy John Tucker Must Die and the children’s book film adaptation of Because of Winn-Dixie directed by Wayne Wang, and Mike Judge’s cult comedy Idiocracy. In January 2007, Liebling was appointed president of production at Fox Atomic, a youth genre subdivision of Fox. In her brief time at Atomic, Liebling kick started the new division with several recent releases including: Jennifer’s Body, The Rocker and I Love You, Beth Cooper. As the recession hit in the spring of 2009, Fox Atomic was reintegrated back into 20th Century Fox, and Liebling rejoined its senior creative team as executive vice president. Prior to 20th Century Fox, Liebling served as chief programming executive for Comedy Central and helped define the brand of the network. She was responsible for the development and creative supervision of Comedy Central’s most successful original programming, the Emmy award-winning South Park, along with other successful series there: The Man Show, Crank Yankers, Primetime Glick, Battlebots and Win Ben Stein’s Money. She also served as co-producer for the feature film South Park: Bigger Longer & Uncut.