By Sahil Patel
It was only a matter of time: UCB Comedy, the digital video arm of the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, has joined Above Average’s multi-channel network.
NY-based Above Average belongs to “SNL” creator Lorne Michaels’ Broadway Video empire. Its comedy network encompasses a main video channel that reaches more than 275,000 subscribers, and a network of sketch-comedy brands ranging from BriTANicK to The Lonely Island. In total, Above Average’s network counts 50 partners and 6.9+ million subscribers.
This deal is the culmination of a long-standing relationship between Above Average and the UCB Theatre. Many performers from the theatre, which has two locations in New York City, have written, directed, and/or starred in Above Average series and sketches, including “Thingstarter,” “That Couple You Know,” “Commentary On,” “Rejected Pitches” (a personal favorite), and “The Idiot’s Guide to Smart People.”
“We are lucky enough to be in NY, where we have access to a fair amount of really cool, creative, and smart people,” said Jennifer Danielson, GM and head of content for Above Average at Broadway Video, in a previous interview with VideoInk.
In that interview, she was directly referring to the UCB Theatre, which was founded by the quartet of Amy Poehler, Matt Besser, Matt Walsh, and Ian Roberts, and has become a big player in the comedy circuit in both New York and LA. (Many UCB comedians have gone on to star in shows for NBC, Fox, ABC, and Comedy Central, including, but not limited to, Aubrey Plaza, Adam Pally, Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer of “Broad City,” and Chris Gethard.)
“UCB Comedy is always looking for ways to connect our talent with great opportunities,” said Todd Bieber, director of content and production for UCB Comedy, in a statement. “Partnering with Above Average, who makes some of the funniest and smartest stuff on the internet is a no-brainer. Together we look forward to fulfilling our master plan for comedy domination… but fun domination, not the evil kind.”