'Gossip Girl' executive producer to take over 'Smash' and leave the UES behind

josh-safran-getty-320.jpg "Gossip Girl" executive producer Josh Safran is moving away from the Upper East Side to the Great White Way. Safran is in the process of finalizing a deal to take the lead on "Smash," now that creator/executive producer/showrunner Theresa Rebeck has stepped down.

Safran began his writing career on "Gossip Girl" five years ago and rose from staff writer to become an executive producer. He was one of several potential E.P.s interviewed for the "Smash" position, and Deadline reports that he is NBC's final choice for the vacated position.

"Gossip Girl" has yet to be renewed for the Fall 2012 season, but sources say that it's very likely to be picked up for at least 13 more episodes in Season 6. Stephanie Savage is currently the lead showrunner on "Gossip Girl," with Safran her second-in-command.

"Gossip Girl" fans -- are you worried about what this exit could mean for the show?

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