Quick Breaks is a daily column from the VideoInk editorial staff, which rounds up and features interesting developments in the larger digital video space that we feel you should be at least somewhat aware of. Have tips or suggestions for more Quick Breaks? Send them over to email@example.com/members.
Netflix has announced its first “OrangeCon,” a gathering dedicated to fans of its critically acclaimed prison dramedy “Orange Is the New Black.” Scheduled for June 11 in New York City, the event will feature autograph signings with cast members, panel discussions with cast and creators, and a special screening. Cast members confirmed to appear include Taylor Schilling, Laura Prepon, Uzo Aduba, Laverne Cox, Natasha Lyonne, and Taryn Manning.
Amazon will premiere “Catastrophe,” a UK comedy series co-created and written by comedian Rob Delaney, on Friday, June 19. From Avalon Television and co-producers Birdbath Productions and Merman, “Catastrophe” follows an Irish woman and American man struggling to start a relationship after an initial tryst leads to a pregnancy. The show, which airs on Channel 4 in the UK, is a critical favorite. Amazon secured exclusive US streaming rights to it in January, and will present it as an “original series.”
TV4 Entertainment’s military-themed video channel, All Warrior Network, is now streaming the first two seasons of “Starting Strong,” a reality series that provides an in-depth look at the Army as a profession. Each episode of the series focuses on a civilian as he or she learns the requirements of a military occupational specialty. Participants learn the tricks of the trade from soldiers and other military professionals, and then decide if they want to join the Army ranks or remain a civilian. Sponsored by the Army, “Starting Strong” is available across all of TV4’s distribution platforms including All Warrior Network channels on YouTube, Vimeo, and Vessel. The third season of the series, which is produced by Ricky Schroder Productions, is currently in production.
Charter Communications announced plans to acquire Time Warner Cable for $56.7 billion. The merger, when combined with Charter’s separate bid to purchase smaller pay-TV provider Bright House Networks, could quadruple Charter’s reach to nearly 24 million subscribers. That would put it right behind Comcast (27 million customers) as the second-largest pay-TV operator in the US. The news comes a month after Comcast dropped its bid to buy Time Warner Cable after facing resistance from federal regulators. If the Charter deal is completed, the new company will be called New Charter and its services will be rebranded as Spectrum.
Digital studio Portal A has hired Ben Duhl as its new head of brand partnerships. In the role, Duhl will oversee, develop, and lead ongoing brand partnerships for Portal A from New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. He will also focus on building strategic partnerships and bringing new brand clients on board for the studio. Duhl also owns Royal Braun, a boutique consultancy and search firm he founded in 2013. He will continue to manage the firm, which previously worked with Portal A to land the studio’s partnership with NBCUniversal.