By Sahil Patel
DreamWorks Animation’s teen-focused YouTube network, AwesomenessTV, has launched its first mobile app, available for iOS devices beginning today.
To promote the app launch, the network is also debuting the second season of its musical drama, “Side Effects,” which will be available in its entirely on the app prior to rolling out on AwesomenessTV’s YouTube channel.
Co-produced in partnership with NBCUniversal’s Universal Cable Productions, “Side Effects” is a tentpole project for AwesomenessTV. Inspired by the immense appetite for music content and cover songs among the YouTube community, the series tells the story of a 16-year-old girl who is prescribed medication following the death of her mother and the disappearance of the father. The side effects of those drugs makes her have musical hallucinations.
With a cast headlined by YouTube stars Chester See, Taryn Southern, and Lia Marie Johnson, and, the first season was released as a 40-minute special last October, generating more than 2 million views in its first week.
Popular songs covered in the first season included David Guetta’s “Titanium” and Pink’s “Try.”
The second season, which continues the story of the lead character and her siblings’ search for their missing father, brings back most of the cast, including See, Johnson, Meg DeLacy, Lulu Antariksa, Cade Canon Ball, Finn Roberts, and Keri Price. They are joined by fellow YouTube superstars Grace Helbig and GloZell, as well as actors Gracie Dzienny (“Supah Ninjas”) and Mikey Roe (“Foodlicious”).
This cast will perform cover songs of top-40 hits including Anna Kendrick’s “Cups,” Capital Cities’ “Safe and Sound,” and One Direction’s “Kiss You,” as well as an original song called “Boom Boom.”
As with the first season, the soundtrack for season two will be distributed by Universal Music Group.
“Side Effects” executive producers include AwesomenessTV founder and CEO Brian Robbins, Joe Davola, Shauna Phelan, Chester See, and Allison Schroeder (“90210”), who also wrote the series. Grammy-nominated music video director Matt Stawski (Cee-Lo Green’s “Forget You”) returned to direct the second season, which will be available as weekly series on YouTube beginning May 15. The first four episodes will be made available on that day, with new installments rolling out every Thursday thereafter.
“Our audience wants to consume their content whenever and wherever they like, so we are excited to provide new ways for them to engage with AwesomenessTV talent, series, and channels through our new mobile app,” said Robbins in a statement. “As we discovered with ‘Side Effects,’ AwesomenessTV fans will watch both long- and short-form content so this gives them the best of both worlds, long-form on the app and short-form on our YouTube channel.”
Universal Cable Productions is overseeing windowing and distribution for “Side Effects” on non-AwesomenessTV platforms, including international territories, digital download, and VOD.
Here’s the season two trailer: