Yahoo, DirecTV 'Suit Up' For Cross-Platform Entertainment
When Yahoo pegged Marissa Mayer as its latest CEO, analysts predicted that the portal would immediately prioritize products and technology over media and
As yet, however, Mayer’s arrival hasn’t slowed Yahoo’s affection for pricey original online content.
Its latest foray into the field is “Suit Up” -- a new eight-episode digital series produced by Fox Digital Studio, in association with DirecTV, which is slated to debut on Yahoo Screen on Sept. 12.
Oddly enough, Yahoo’s popularity as a source for sports news helped seal the deal for Fox Digital.
"Yahoo's huge reach in the sports category and its increasing focus on scripted entertainment make it the perfect distribution partner," said Matthew Glotzer, senior vice president of Fox Digital Entertainment.
Under the terms of the distribution deal, all eight episodes will be available at launch exclusively within Yahoo for two weeks. After that, they will be accessible through additional channels.
The fictional series follows crisis manager Jim Dunnigan -- played by Marc Evan Jackson -- who takes the helm of a scandal-laden athletic department at Glory University.
"Suit Up" is just the latest big-budget project to premier on Yahoo Screen. Last month, Yahoo, along with Tom Hanks’ Playtone production company and Reliance Entertainment, debuted “Electric City," a new animated series.
Beginning in January 2013, "Suit Up" will make its broadcast premiere on DirecTV's Audience Network. The broadcast debut of the series will include bonus content, such as behind-the-scenes features and outtakes.
Late last year, Forrester credited Yahoo with helping to grow domestic digital video ad spend. Alongside content hubs like Hulu and Google, Forrester said Yahoo was giving advertisers more reason to realign their TV budgets. Partly as a result, by 2016, domestic digital video ad spending will explode by more than 250% -- from $2 billion in 2011 to $5.4 billion, Forrester predicted.