updated 12/21/2005 11:12:47 AM ET 2005-12-21T16:12:47

Former HBO chief Jeff Bewkes will become the sole chief operating officer of Time Warner Inc. when Don Logan, with whom he had shared the title of co-chief operating officer, retires at the end of the year, the company said Wednesday.

The announcement appears to clear a path for the eventual succession of Time Warner’s CEO Dick Parsons. Parsons, 57, named Bewkes and Logan, the former chief of Time Inc., as his deputies in May 2002 when he became CEO, replacing the departing Jerry Levin.

Logan, 61, had been commuting to New York for many years from his home in Birmingham, Ala., where his family lives. After he retires, Logan will become the non-executive chairman of the board of Time Warner Cable, which Time Warner hopes to spin off after completing a three-way deal with Comcast Corp. to acquire the assets of Adelphia Communications Corp.

Bewkes, 53, had overseen all of Time Warner’s entertainment assets over the past three years, including the Warner Bros. studio and the company’s portfolio of cable networks, which include HBO as well as CNN, TBS and TNT.

In his new role as chief operating officer, Bewkes will also oversee the other half of Time Warner’s businesses that had been under Logan’s purview, including the Time Inc. magazine publisher, AOL and Time Warner Cable.

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