DCNF: Yahoo Orders Its First TV-Sized Projects

/ Apr 28, 2014

Yahoo_HOC

As we first reported last December, Yahoo has been looking for its own “House of Cards.” Today at its Newfront presentation to advertisers, the company unveiled its first two TV-sized projects: both half-hour comedy shows from veteran film and TV writers/producers.

The first show, “Sin City Saints,” comes from executive producer Mike Tollin (“Smallville”), writer Chris Case, and director Bryan Gordon (“Curb Your Enthusiasm”). The single-camera comedy follows the Sin City Saints, a Las Vegas-based expansion NBA team that, frankly, sucks. Yahoo has ordered eight half-hour episodes.

The second show is “Other Space,” a space-comedy from filmmaker Paul Feig (“Bridesmaids,” “Freaks & Geeks”). Executive produced by Feig, “Other Space” will follow a group of dysfunctional explorers who stumble into an alternative universe. Yahoo has ordered eight half-hour episodes for this show as well.

Both shows will debut on Yahoo Screen, across all of the platforms the app is available on, in 2015.

Yahoo is eyeing two more TV-sized comedy projects, which will be announced in the coming weeks.

Overall, Yahoo’s video strategy is comprised of four different parts: original programming, live events, video within its new and upcoming crop of digital magazines, and licensed TV content.

Within the field of live, Yahoo is partnering with concert presenter Live Nation Entertainment to live-stream a full concert every day for an entire year, beginning this summer. Yahoo will also make more than 1,200 of the “best songs” from these concerts available on an on-demand basis for “months and months,” said Yahoo CMO Kathy Savitt, in addition to hours of exclusive and behind-the-scenes clips. The content will be available via a Live Nation channel on Yahoo Screen, with Kellogg’s on board as an initial sponsor.

Other live partnerships include deals to exclusively stream red carpets for movies like “X-Men: Days of Future Past” and the next “Hunger Games” movie, as well as a deal with the NFL to bring in-game highlights to Yahoo Sports.

Katie Couric, who joined Yahoo last year as global news anchor, is also bringing two new shows to Yahoo, in addition to the video interviews she conducts with newsmakers. “World 3.0” will feature interviews with “tech titans on the cutting edge who are changing how we live,” said Couric, while “Now I Get It” is an “explanatory video journalism” project to demystify what we don’t understand about the world.

After launching Yahoo Tech and Yahoo Food magazines earlier this year, Yahoo has launched Yahoo Travel. The digital magazines will feature various types of video content, including original series.

Finally, Yahoo said it’s integrating with comScore vCE measurement tool. Initially, the solution will be available on video and display buys for US advertisers, with plans to expand the capability to mobile and international in “later phases” of the partnership.

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