03/14/16: Netflix begins first South American production; Rooster Teeth to debut two new web series; Feeln to launch new docu-series


Good morning. It’s Monday March 14, 2016, and this is your first early morning digital briefing.

Watcheroo Premieres and Tune-in Alerts for March 14-20:
People Now at People.com, Monday-Friday at 8:30a ET and 11:30a ET: Guests include TV personality Ben Higgins (ABC’s The Bachelor), musician and actor Joey Fatone (My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2), and actor Sullivan Stapleton (NBC’s Blindspot)
Acorn TV: Janet King, Series 1: The Enemy Within debuts on the service March 14
YouTube: Moon Shot, a Google-funded docu-series produced by J.J. Abrams, debuts on the Lunar Xprize YouTube channel March 15
– Go90: Street Fighter: Resurrection, an original series from Machinima, debuts on Verizon’s mobile streaming service March 15
Netflix: Season two of the British cop drama Happy Valley debuts March 16
Seeso: The new series Bajillion Dollar Propertie$ debuts on NBCU’s comedy SVOD service March 17
– Netflix
: Pee-wee’s Big Holiday, an original feature film starring Paul Reubens as Pee-wee Herman, debuts March 18
– Netflix
: Season two of Daredevil premieres March 18
Netflix: Jimmy Carr Funny Business, an original comedy special, debuts March 18
Netflix: My Beautiful Broken Brain, a documentary executive produced by David Lynch, premieres March 18


Of late, Netflix has taken to billing itself as the “world’s leading Internet television network.” It’s an ambitious slogan, and to make it true, two things are necessary: International reach, and region-specific content. Netflix – now live in 190 countries – has the former. As for the latter, it’s getting there. In São Paulo, Brazil, Netflix has begun principal photography on “3%,” a new thriller series. A Portuguese-language production – the service’s first, and its first series shot in South America – the show will be geared toward Brazilian audiences. Netflix has already taken on other regional productions, including Spanish-, German-, and Italian-language programming.



The production company Rooster Teeth has churned out a number of projects lately, including Lazer Team, its first feature film. Next up for the company will be a pair of new web series: Crunch Time, a sci-fi comedy, and Day 5, a drama. Crunch Time and Day 5 will be available to Rooster Teeth’s paid subs (or, as Rooster Teeth calls them, “sponsors”). The two series will debut sometime this year.
The Hallmark-owned SVOD service Feeln is currently in production with upcoming docu-series Wonder Women: Heroic Forces (working title). The company says that the series will be geared toward global and multi-platform distribution. It focuses on groups of women across the world who combine their talents to effect change in their communities. Each episode of Wonder Women was helmed by a female director. You can check out a sizzle reel of the series here.


Presentation Skills: How to Master Every Meeting

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Acorn TV
, the entertainment brand specializing in bringing UK programming to North American audiences, announced that it has acquired the EST and home video rights to the Agatha Christie mini-series And Then There Were None, which first aired on BBC One in December. The miniseries makes its linear U.S. premiere on Lifetime on Sunday, March 13 and Monday, March 14, with next-day EST availability on March 14 and March 15. (EST download will be available for numerous platforms, including iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, and Vudu.) Acorn TV will then add the miniseries to its SVOD platform in September 2016.
Get happy. Netflix has the North American rights to season two of the British cop drama Happy Valley, and all six episodes of season two will debut for U.S. and Canadian subs on March 16, one day after completing a linear UK run on BBC One. The service also owns the streaming rights to season one.


The production company Shaftesbury and its digital studio Smokebomb Entertainment are teaming up with the Banff World Media Festival to bring back Shaftesbury/Smokebomb’s digital series pitch competition, The AMP (Audience Metrics Partnership) Accelerator, for a second straight year. The competition’s top three finalists will be sent to Banff to pitch their projects in front of a live industry audience; after the fest, one or more of the projects will be selected to move into development with Shaftesbury/Smokebomb. The festival takes place from June 12 – 15.


“History favors those who disrupt the status quo and for this reason it is an honor to be named among the Top Women in Digital 2016.” – Pam SlaySVP, Network Program Publicity & Social Content at Crown Media Family Networks. Hear from more of our talented Top Women in Digital on March 24th in New York City. Register here: http://www.cynopsis.com/event/2016-twd-event


The video advertising platform Innovid recently released its 2016 Global Video Benchmarks Report, a look at performance across screens ranging from mobile to connected TV, based on interactive and pre-roll video campaigns and impressions, as measured by their delivery through the Innovid platform in 2015. Among the findings:

Connected TV advanced video (which includes OTT devices) resulted in the highest completion rates compared to mobile devices and desktop.

– Mobile video generated the greatest engagement rates compared to desktop and connected TV.

Interactive video generated 591% lift in total user activity over standard pre-roll campaigns.

Interactive campaigns deliver an additional 44 seconds in time earned on average, on top of the time spent watching the pre-roll.

Broadcast placements deliver an additional 67 seconds of time earned with audiences over other content providers and aggregators.

Desktop is still the screen where advertisers are investing most of their impressions (66.5%), with mobile in second (28.3%), and connected TV on the edge of growth (currently at 4.7%).
“It’s no surprise that the more a video has to offer, on screens that are seeing high usage volumes, the more action advertisers will see from viewers,” Innovid co-founder and CEO Zvika Netter told Cynopsis Digital. “That’s why advanced video is once again yielding higher benchmarks across the board over standard pre-roll video on all devices. Audiences also seemingly prefer streaming devices, since connected TV devices are yielding the highest completion rates and mobile is providing the most engagement.” You can check out the full report here.


Mediakraft Networks
, the European online-TV broadcasting group, announced a change in its management structure. Mediakraft CEO and co-founder Spartacus Olsson will take on a new role, supporting the investors Iris Capital, Shortcut Ventures, and Capnamic Ventures, as well as the Mediakraft Advisory Board, as founder and President. In the new role, he’ll focus on strategic investments, as well as mergers and acquisitions. Meanwhile, three existing Mediakraft execs – Constantin Stammen, Boris Bolz, and Levent Gultan – will make up Mediakraft’s future management team, serving as Managing Directors.



Join Cynopsis Digital on March 24 at the Top Women in Digital Awards Breakfast from 8:15  10:30AM to celebrate this year’s talented honorees from companies such as DigitasLBi, Dunkin’ Brands, Google, Hasbro, Horizon Media, Hulu, Maker Studios and more. The awards presentation will be followed by a mimosa networking session with your top industry peers.

Register now to attend this can’t-miss event.


Good to see that in the age of Daredevil, Jessica Jones, and $100 million Will Smith productions, Netflix still isn’t neglecting documentary. My Beautiful Broken Brain, a new doc from executive producer David Lynch, chronicles the recovery of a stroke survivor. The film debuts Friday – you can check out the trailer here.

See you tomorrow,
David Teich

Roberta Caploe: Associate Publisher @robertacaploe
Diane K Schwartz: Senior Vice President, Media Communications Group

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