AOL announced a deal to have Vuguru develop and produce a minimum of six original scripted series for distribution by AOL. Vuguru is an independent studio focused on digital and emerging platforms – headed by former Disney CEO Michael Eisner.
AOL called Vuguru an ideal partner to help drive well-produced, compelling entertainment content across the Web.
“Until now, there’s been a gap in the online video consumer experience between user-generated video and the high production values of TV and film,” said Tim Armstrong, Chairman and CEO of AOL. “In joining forces with Vuguru and other premier studios and production companies, AOL is uniquely able to bridge that gap by bringing top quality, original video to the millions of users who come to our site each day. The magical combination of AOL’s impressive reach with one of the most visionary content creators will help us become a market leader in this largely untapped space,” he added.
“The Internet’s next growth phase will be powered by professional, high-quality, story-driven content and the key to success is delivering that content to as many users as possible. With AOL’s best-in-breed distribution strength, I couldn’t have asked for a better partner to help reach that goal,” said Eisner.
“AOL’s significant commitment to premium video content is inspiring to Vuguru which is equally focused on the same,” added Vuguru President Larry Tanz.
Under the deal announced Wednesday, Vuguru will develop and produce a minimum of six high-quality, scripted video series over the next year, with AOL as its launch partner in the US.
“With production values that far exceed the production costs,” the partners claim the six shows will set a new bar for original online entertainment. Each project will be produced as a continuous story of approximately 90 minutes in length with cliff-hangers or natural breaks so that they can be segmented for episodic distribution. The shows will be professionally written and produced and feature talent “consistent with the caliber of Vuguru and AOL.”
RBR-TVBR observation: Content is still king. There’s an amazing amount of video available on the Internet, but let’s face it, a lot of it is really, really bad. The exposure is good because the best amateurs will break through the clutter and move up into the professional ranks. In the end, the best videos which attract the most viewers will be those which are well written, well edited, well shot and well produced – and that takes some investment.