Maker Studios and Trium Make “History” with TV Deal

/ Feb 18, 2016

Maker Studios 5

Today, A+E-owned History Channel announced that it is launching a new late-night comedy block stacked with three shows oriented around various history-related themes. And one of those shows, “Crossroads of History” — a comedic twist on largely unknown but historically accurate events or moments in a historical figure’s life — includes a history-in-the-making television deal for Maker Studios, and production partner Trium Entertainment.

Not only does “Crossroads” mark the first original series from Maker Studios to be distributed on linear television, but History Channel, Maker Studios and Trium are breaking new ground in a distribution model, that if works, could become a go-to path for the future.

“They say “Comedy is all in the timing,” And this deal is certainly no different,” said Maker Studios’ EVP of programming, Bonnie Pan, who told VideoInk that the deal came together over dinner in New York City with History Channel executive producer Paul Cabana.

CrossroadsOfHistory_VideoInk

“Crossroads of History” episode featuring Adolf Hitler’s attempt to get into the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts. Courtesy of Trium.

“We were able to say, ‘Ok, we have this series and let’s see if there’s a way we can build a new model. Traditionally, everybody tends to hug everything in so closely. There was an opportunity because of the programming [History] is doing with the late night comedy block to say “Let’s also explore what can happen in digital beyond that first linear window and can we create a new programming cycle.”

And so Maker Studios and History will pave their own history-making path by releasing episodes of “Crossroads of History”, eight in total all of which are short form, on History channel for an exclusive 48 hours, at which point episodes will be syndicated to Maker Studios-branded channels as well as History’s own digital destinations.

According to Pan, the approach is entirely experimental and intended to be iterated in real-time as necessary. For instance, episodes may be edited slightly, or distributed on certain cascading windows on digital based on what learnings the teams pick up as they go. The team will also experiment with edited or original versions on various other social channels like Twitter and Facebook.

Leading up to the deal with History, Maker Studios and Trium also found the project at an interesting distribution crossroads. “The truth is there are a lot of brilliant writers and creators working today that are frustrated with the TV business. Development cycles are long and all too often their best work doesn’t fit in TV’s rigid model — especially as they creatively explore new forms of storytelling,” said Trium co-founder Eric Day, who found the project penned by writer/actress Elizabeth Shapiro (“Movie 43”) and pushed it, at Trium’s own expense, into a pilot.

A pilot which found its way to Maker Studios and was immediately ordered to series. “Elizabeth is a really amazing writer and creator and through conversations with her and talking through the different historic facts through a comedic lens. It’s rare that you’re in a room laughing about small pox or the Civil War. But the way that the facts are so accurate you’re able to take that small moment and turn it into razor sharp comedy, showed us it was a really special project,” added Pan.

History’s new comedy block will air Thursday, February 25th at 11:30 PM and will feature talent such as  Brian Baumgartner (“The Office”), Angela Kinsey(“The Office”), Jack McBrayer (“30 Rock”), Wayne Knight (“Seinfeld”), Lloyd Ahlquist (“Epic Rap Battles of History”) and Paul Scheer (“The League”).

“It’s really gratifying to see [Maker’s] foresight [for a project not obviously traditional] validated by a marquee distributor like History. This is just the beginning of Crossroads’ journey — and this is a good indicator of where this business of ours is headed,” added Day.
CAA and David Freeman packaged the deals and also rep Trium.
Tags: , , , ,


carmilla-u-by-kotex

Lesbian Vampires & Kotex: How ‘Carmilla’ Became...

 
aap-rocky

MTV Labs Taps Rapper A$AP Rocky as Creative Director

 
CableCross

FCC Cancels Vote on ‘Unlock the Box’ OTT Proposal

 
lights-out-shoot-blackbox-tv-collab

Collab Signs Horror Channel BlackBoxTV to Network, Partners on...

 
Industry Tickets Selling Fast!
Click above to lock in your registration for VidCon 2015!
 
PewDiePie 3-2-15

PewDiePie Expands Revelmode Gaming Slate with DoubleMoose Deal

 
storyful-marketplace

Storyful Launches Viral Video Marketplace

 
lyor-cohen-youtube-music

Pioneering Hip Hop Exec Lyor Cohen Joins YouTube as Global Head...

 
alpha-legendary-digital

Legendary Digital Reveals Alpha Subscription Service Launch...

 
time-inc-jash

Time Inc. Teams with Digital Comedy Producers Jash for Branded Content

 
Amazon Logo

Amazon Greenlights Three Comedy Pilots as Series

 
cartoon-network-app

How the Cartoon Network Combined the Best of VOD and Linear TV...

 
jukin-media-ethos

Jukin Media Goes Viral for Brands with Ethos Division Launch

 
Streamy Awards

Streamy Awards Trade In VH1 for YouTube, Again

 
zefr-alignment-report

Matching Ads to Videos Not So Simple, According to Zefr’s...

 
shomi

Plug Pulled on Canadian SVOD Service Shomi

 
Twitter

What’s Trending on the Twitter Sale

 
Machinima Logo

Machinima Teams with SiriusXM for Daily Esports Radio Show

 
Hearst

AwesomenessTV, Vice, Complex to Power New HearstLive...

 
dirty-30-hannah-hart-mamrie-hart-grace-helbig

VIDEO: ‘Dirty 30’ Confessions with Stars Hart,...

 
facebook-thumbs-down

Facebook Says It’s Sorry It Vastly Overestimated Video...

 
craig-piligian-pilgrim-media-group

Pilgrim Media Group CEO Craig Piligian (‘The...

 
youtube-heroes-for-change

Heroes or Rats?: YouTube Unveils New Program for Creators Who...

 
Vessel says it's doing well in its first month

Why Verizon is Pursuing Vessel, the...

 
jared-feldman-and-sam-hui-ph-d-at-the-2014-canvs-launch

How Canvs Media is Harvesting Emotional Insights on YouTube,...

 
marlon-wayans

Marlon Wayans Getting ‘Naked’ for Netflix with Regina Hall

 
huffpost-ryot-aol

HuffPost RYOT Launching Virtual Reality Comedy Series and News...

 
youtube-vote-irl

YouTube Launches #voteIRL Campaign Targeting Digital-First Generation

 
tyler-oakley-camp17

How Top YouTubers (incl. Tyler Oakley & Meghan Rienks)...

 
charlie-sheen-anger-management

Charlie Sheen to Star in Crackle Feature ‘Mad Families’

 
filmbuff_videoink_300x250

Gunpowder & Sky Buys Distributor FilmBuff As Vision for...

 
toy-freaks-youtube

Toy Freaks Top Viewed YouTube Channel in August According to...

 
jeffrey-tambor-transparent-amazon

Emmy Wrap-Up 2016: Jeffrey Tambor (‘Transparent’)...

 
Twitter

Twitter Scores 2.1 Million Viewers for Thursday Night Footall Kickoff

 
youtube-sad-face-error

Vloggers Not Unique Snowflakes: 90 Million Flag YouTube Videos...

 
Mode Media

‘Billion Dollar Startup’ Mode Media Shuts Down

 
raised-firsts-branded-tv

Who Is Winning The Marketing Revolution And Why?

 
shes-gotta-have-it

Netflix Orders ‘She’s Gotta Have It’ Series...

 
swedish-dicks-peter-stormare-keanue-reeves-viaplay

What Is ‘Swedish Dicks’ and Who Is Selling It?

 
seamlessly-she-monica-potter-aol-partner-studio-gmc-acadia

How GMC is Using the AOL Series ‘Seamlessly She’...

 
Netflix_new

Liberty Global to Put Netflix on Set-Top Boxes in 30 Countries