TBI Weekly: Digital giants invest in original teams

YouTubeRedThis week saw veteran programming execs move over to digital giants Apple and YouTube, as the platforms make a further push into original programming.

Originals execs set to do the job at Apple & YouTube


Former president and general manager of US basic cable channel WGN America (WGNA) Matt Cherniss joined Apple, his former lieutenant, executive VP of original programming Jon Wax joining YouTube.

Cherniss joined former Sony execs Jamie Erlicht and Zach van Amburg at Apple, which is set to invest US$1 billion in original and acquired programming. Apple began its move into original programming with shows such as Battle of the Apps.

Meanwhile, Wax joined YouTube Red as head of drama, scripted and current programming. He joins as the Google-owned SVOD service unveiled its latest batch of original shows, which included a pair of scripted series, a competition format and a live-action kids series. It has also ordered a Karate Kid Spin-off and magazine series We Are Savvy.

A number of tech giants are increasingly pushing into original content, with Facebook also hiring veteran entertainment execs to run its operations.


Also in the news…


UK-based Factory acquired Rollo Rights, the owners of Mr. Benn, Rupert Fawcett’s Off The Leash, King Rollo and Towser

Cineflix Rights closed a number of international deals for programming for producer partner Finestripe Productions, including deals in Australia, Sweden, Iran and more for Diana: The Day The World Cried

Global kids content distributor Jetpack Distribution acquired international rights to British and Irish animated preschool children’s series Boj, a coproduction between Pesky, Cavalier and Clothcat Animation

STV Productions received its biggest ever commission from UK pubcaster the BBC, producing a further four seasons of long running hit show Antiques Road Trip for BBC One and a seventh season of Celebrity Antiques Road Trip for BBC Two

Eccho Rights has secured deals for Heart Of The City and Insider in Malaysia, where interest in Turkish drama is taking off

MTV India has launched Dropout Pvt. Ltd., a reality format that the channel claims will see “the formation of the world’s first ever start-up on TV”. Monozygotic produced the show after a co-development process with MTV.


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