Brian Robbins

Last updated
Brian Robbins
Brian Robbins 1988 (cropped).jpg
Robbins in 1988
Brian Levine

(1963-11-22) November 22, 1963 (age 57)
OccupationActor, film director, film producer, television director, television producer, screenwriter
Years active1982–present
Spouse(s)Laura Cathcart (?-2013), Tracy James (2014-present) [1]

Brian Levine (born November 22, 1963), known professionally as Brian Robbins, is an American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter who is currently the president of Nickelodeon. He has often collaborated with producer Michael Tollin. [2]



Robbins followed his father Floyd Levine, a prolific character actor, into acting. [2] Brian Robbins made his television acting debut on an episode of Trapper John, M.D. [3] He guest starred on a number and television series and a recurring role on General Hospital. [3] As an actor, he is perhaps best known from his role as Eric Mardian on the ABC sitcom Head of the Class . [3] He also hosted the children's version of the TV game show Pictionary in 1989.

In the 1990s, he started producing All That and its spin-offs on Nickelodeon. [2] He has produced several sports films including Coach Carter and Hardball (2001). He produced Smallville and also produced One Tree Hill .

Robbins is the founder of AwesomenessTV, a YouTube channel aimed at teenagers, which has spun off into a TV series, of which Robbins is the executive producer. [4] DreamWorks Animation acquired the company in 2013. [5] On February 22, 2017, following NBCUniversal/Comcast's acquisition of DreamWorks Animation, Brian Robbins stepped down as AwesomenessTV's CEO, thus ending his five-year run with the company. [6]

On June 7, 2017, Brian Robbins became the president of Paramount Players, a newly formed division of Paramount Pictures. Robbins will work with Viacom’s Nickelodeon, MTV, Comedy Central and BET brands to generate projects while also focusing on "contemporary properties." [7]

On October 1, 2018, Brian Robbins left his position as the president of Paramount Players after Viacom tapped him to be the president of Nickelodeon, ending his 16–month run at the studio. Despite leaving the studio, he remained involved with Paramount Players' Nickelodeon films. [8]

Personal life

Robbins was born Brian Levine in Brooklyn, New York on November 22, 1963. [2] When Robbins was 16, his family moved to Los Angeles. [9] He graduated from Grant High School in 1982. [3]

Robbins is Jewish. [10] He was married to publicist Laura Cathcart, with whom he has two sons, Miles and Justin. They divorced in 2013. Robbins went on to marry his ex-wife's friend, Tracy James. They have a daughter together.[ citation needed ]



1995 The Show YesYesNoDocumentary film
1997 Good Burger YesYesNo
1999 Varsity Blues YesYesNo
2000 Ready to Rumble YesNoNo
2001 Hardball YesYesNo
Summer Catch YesYesNo
2002 Big Fat Liar NoYesStory
2004 The Perfect Score YesYesNo
2006 The Shaggy Dog YesNoNo
2007 Norbit YesExecutiveNoNominated- Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Director
2008 Meet Dave YesNoNo
2012 A Thousand Words YesYesNoFilmed in 2008

Producer only


1988 Head of the Class NoNoYesEpisode "Will the Real Arvid Engen Please Stand Up?"
1994 All That NoYesYesAlso creator
1996 Kenan & Kel YesYesNo5 episodes
1998-2001 Cousin Skeeter YesYesYesAlso creator;
Wrote "A Family Thing", directed "Skeeter's Toy Story"
1999 Popular YesNoNoEpisode "The Phantom Menace"
2001 The Nightmare Room YesYesNoEpisode "Four Eyes"
2002 Birds of Prey YesYesNoEpisode "Pilot"
2005All That 10th Anniversary Reunion SpecialNoNoYesTV special
2010 Blue Mountain State YesYesNo2 episodes
2011 Supah Ninjas YesYesNo2 episodes

Executive producer only

Acting credits

1982 Harper Valley PTA Charlie's NephewEpisode "The Return of Charlie's Chow Palace"
Archie Bunker's Place Danny FergusonEpisode "Double Date"
The Facts of Life BenEpisode "For the Asking"
Taxi [11] Young ManEpisode "Alex the Gofer"
1983 Three's Company MarkEpisode "Praise the Lord and Pasta Ammunition"
Knight Rider Randy MerrittEpisode "Soul Survivor"
1984 Diff'rent Strokes SkyhighEpisode "Undercover Lover"
Newhart RobEpisode "The Fan"
1985 Charles in Charge Todd BaldwinEpisode "Mr. President"
Growing Pains MitchEpisode "Dirt Bike"
1986 The Gladiator Jeff BentonTV movie
Mr. Belvedere EricEpisode "The Dropout"
1986-1991 Head of the Class Eric Mardian114 episodes
1987 Kids Incorporated BrianEpisode "Win a Date with Renee"
1988 Cellar Dweller Phillip Lemley
1989 C.H.U.D. II: Bud the C.H.U.D. Steve Williams
1990 Camp Cucamonga Roger BergTV movie
1992 Full House David JanolariEpisodes "Captain Video: Part 1" and "Captain Video: Part 2"
1997 Kenan & Kel RisottoEpisode "Safe and Sorry"

Awards and nominations

YearAwardResultCategoryFilm or series
1993 Heartland Film Festival WonCrystal Heart Award Hardwood Dreams (Shared with Mike Tollin)
1995 Emmy Award NominatedOutstanding Informational Special Hank Aaron: Chasing the Dream (Shared with Debra Martin Chase, Fredric Golding, Dorian Harewood, David Houle, Tom McMahon, Pat Mitchell, Jack Myers, Vivian Schiller, Mike Tollin, Denzel Washington)
1996 CableACE Award WonChildren's Special - 7 and OlderSports Theater with Shaquille O'Neal (Shared with Leonard Armato, Bruce Binkow, Robert Mickelson, Shaquille O'Neal, Mike Tollin, For the special "4 Points")
1997 Directors Guild of America Award NominatedOutstanding Directorial Achievement in Children's ProgramsSports Theater with Shaquille O'Neal(For the special "4 Points")
1998WonOutstanding Directorial Achievement in Children's ProgramsSports Theater with Shaquille O'Neal(Shared with W. Alexander Ellis, Cynthia Riddle, Brad Uecker: for episode "First Time")
2005 Black Movie Awards NominatedOutstanding Motion Picture Coach Carter (Shared with David Gale, Mike Tollin)

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  2. 1 2 3 4 Koch, Neal (1 December 2002). "Business; Stepping Up in TV, Without Stepping on Toes". The New York Times . Retrieved 18 February 2018.
  3. 1 2 3 4 Knutzen, Eirik (4 October 1987). "Rebel jumps to 'Head of the Class'". The Plain Dealer . Cleveland . Retrieved June 30, 2020.
  4. Chmielewski, Dawn C. (August 7, 2012). "YouTube channel AwesomenessTV attracts outside funding". Los Angeles Times .
  5. Lieberman, David (May 1, 2013). "DreamWorks Animation Agrees To Pay $33M+ For AwesomenessTV". Deadline Hollywood .
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  7. McNary, Dave (June 7, 2017). "Paramount Pictures Launches New Production Division Headed by Brian Robbins" . Retrieved June 30, 2020.
  8. Sandberg, Bryn Elise (October 1, 2018). "Viacom Names Brian Robbins President of Nickelodeon". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 1, 2018.
  9. Nicewonger, Kirk (30 July 1988). "Busy, busy time for Brian Robbins". Greensboro News & Record . Retrieved 18 February 2018.
  10. Bloom, Nate. "Interfaith Celebrities: Meet Dave, Elizabeth Banks, and Jean Sarkozky". InterfaithFamily. Retrieved 10 March 2018.
  11. Michael Lessac (director) (2014). Taxi: Die Finale Season[The Final Season] (DVD) (in German and English). Germany: Paramount Home Media Distribution / Paramount Home Entertainment (Germany).
Preceded by
Cyma Zarghami
Nickelodeon president
Succeeded by