Ellation, the company that runs Crunchyroll and VRV, two popular OTT platforms, is going all in on original content with the launch of Ellation Studios.
Ellation’s original content efforts will include production facilities in Burbank and Tokyo with a total of 75 employees devoted to creating and developing new original shows for the Crunchyroll and VRV communities. Margaret Dean, former GM of Stoopid Buddy Stoodios and current president of Women in Animation, has been named head of studio for the new division.
Dean will be responsible for developing originals for both VRV and Crunchyroll. The first production she will oversee is Crunchyroll’s first original series “High Guardian Spice,” slated to premiere in 2019.
“High Guardian Spice” was created by Raye Rodriguez, a lifelong anime fan, and his production team that features an all-female writing room. Joining Rodriguez as mentor is Audu Paden, who best known for directing the “Animaniacs.”
“With Originals, we have an incredible opportunity to elevate diverse voices in animation,” said Dean. “Throughout my career and in my work with Women in Animation, I have been focused on finding ways to celebrate underrepresented creators, and now with our Originals, we’re giving these creators and many more a platform to tell their anime-inspired stories.”
Ellation’s original programming efforts build upon the existing content strategy of licensing and co-producing premium content for both Crunchyroll and VRV. Currently, Crunchyroll has co-produced over 50 series, including “Kiznaiver,” “Classroom of the Elite,” “Space Patrol Luluco” and “Laid-Back Camp.”