AwesomenessTV has hired ABC Entertainment exec Samie Kim Falvey in the newly-created role of chief content officer for the upcoming premium content service it is launching in partnership with Verizon.
The yet-to-be named service — a standalone brand/business wholly-owned by AwesomenessTV — will feature short-form mobile content designed to be on par with linear TV programming, with top Hollywood talent working both in front of and behind the camera.
Falvey will oversee all content and creative, including programming, development and production.
Falvey is a 10-year vet of ABC Entertainment, where she most recently served as EVP of comedy development and international scripted development, overseeing the development and production of all comedy pilots, as well as international talent and format development. Projects developed on her watch include the critically-acclaimed comedies “black-ish” and “Fresh Off the Boat.” She also led the re-launch of the Watch ABC app and oversaw development and production of all scripted short form content for the platform.
“Samie has a tremendous track record of successful collaborations with some of the most accomplished creators in the business and a great knack for developing content that resonates,” said Jeffrey Katzenberg, CEO of DreamWorks Animation, in a statement. “Her eye for great storytelling coupled with terrific talent relationships will be invaluable in creating nextgeneration premium programming for audiences to devour in the ways they are actually watching today — in bite-sized chunks across every device there is.”
The platform was first announced in April, when Verizon acquired a 24.5% stake in AwesomenessTV for $159 million. DreamWorks Animation (in the process of being purchased by NBCUniversal) acquired AwesomenessTV in May 2013 for $33 million and retains a controlling stake in the company, with 51% ownership of outstanding shares. Hearst owns a 24.5% stake, which it acquired for $81 million in Dec. 2014.
AwesomenessTV was founded in 2012 by director/producer Brian Robbins and producer/exec Joe Davola, who had previously collaborated on the TV shows “Smallville” and “One Tree Hill.” In addition to its core TV business — which supplies content to YouTube, as well as Netflix (“Richie Rich,” “Project MC²”) and Nickelodeon — AwesomenessTV also has divisions devoted to features (Awesomeness Films), music (Awesomeness Music), publishing (Awesomeness Ink), artist management (Big Frame) and consumer products.