By Sahil Patel
AwesomenessTV, the DreamWorks Animation- and Hearst-owned digital media company focused on creating content for teens and tweens, has its sights set on international.
Presenting during the MIP Digital Fronts — an annual showcase for digital content producers, distributors, and networks held during MIPTV — AwesomenessTV announced plans to open offices in the UK, Spain, Germany, France, and Brazil. In these markets, the company will seek to partner with local creators and help them build their own brands across social and digital platforms.
This includes the production and distribution of TV series and feature-length films in the languages that speak to the teens and tweens in those markets. This is not unlike what the company has already been doing in the US, as it has produced and distribute films such as “Expelled” and series such as “Richie Rich” across digital and (in some cases) traditional platforms.
“Generation Z is everywhere, so our content needs to live everywhere,” said Brian Robbins, founder and CEO of AwesomenessTV, from the stage.
The company believes that YouTube audiences will follow their favorite creators to new and old platforms — and it has the results to prove it. “Expelled,” which starred Cameron Dallas, was the most social movie of 2014 with 15 billion social impressions. This helped propel the film to the top of the iTunes charts, according to Robbins. AwesomenessTV’s self-titled series on Nickelodeon has also been a success, averaging 1.5 to 2 million viewers per episode, even though all of the sketch comedy clips in each episode already exist on YouTube.
Looking ahead, AwesomenessTV has a few more long-form projects in the works.
For instance, it’s producing a series called “Guidance,” which will star “Gossip Girl” alum Michelle Trachtenberg. This series will debut on one of the two over-the-top video channels AwesomenessTV plans to launch on Verizon, as part of a content and distribution deal between the two companies. While exclusive to Verizon in the first window, “Guidance” will eventually be opened to the international market, said Brett Bouttier, president of the company.
Other projects include season two of “Royal Crush,” a series starring YouTuber Meg DeAngelis, and a feature film starring Aussies The Janoskians.
AwesomenessTV will also premiere “The Smosh Movie,” which it produced in partnership with Defy Media, at VidCon later this year.