WHAT: UCP, a division of NBCUniversal Content Studios, has inked a multiyear first-look deal with iHeartMedia, the No. 1 commercial podcast publisher, to have a first right at adapting iHeartRadio Original podcasts for television. As part of the deal, the studio’s new podcast platform, UCP Audio, will also have the option to develop and co-produce original podcast series with the iHeartPodcast Network.
iHeartRadio joins UCP’s roster of first-look deals, which include recently announced deals with Gary Dauberman, as well as John Carpenter, Emmy Rossum (“Angelyne”), and Steve Piet and Erik Crary, among others. UCP also has overall deals with Sera Gamble (“The Magicians”), Nick Antosca (“The Act,” “Brand New Cherry Flavor”), Sam Esmail (“Mr. Robot,” “Homecoming”) and Patrick Macmanus (“Dr. Death”).
WHO: UCP, a division of NBCUniversal Content Studios, is the award-winning studio behind scripted fare including “Dr. Death” (Peacock), “Mr. Robot” (USA Network), “The Umbrella Academy” (Netflix), “The Act” (Hulu), “Homecoming” (Amazon), “Dirty John” (USA Network), “Battlestar Galactica” (Peacock), “The Sinner” (USA Network), “Brand New Cherry Flavor” (Netflix), and “Chucky” (Syfy) to name a few. On the unscripted side, UCP produces “DNA of Murder” (Oxygen) and the upcoming “A Wilderness of Error” (FX).
Later this year, the studio will unveil their new podcast network, UCP Audio. The new platform’s initial offerings include “The End Up,” a scripted podcast from Sam Esmail’s (“Mr. Robot,” “Homecoming”) Esmail Corp banner and two unscripted podcasts that delve into two gripping true-crime investigations, “House of Prayer” and the untitled TROUBLED TEEN INDUSTRY project.
iHeartMedia’s iHeartPodcast Network is home to more than 750 original podcasts that span every category from business, sports, spirituality and technology to entertainment, family, comedy and true crime – and everything in between – making iHeartRadio the largest publisher of podcast content in the world.
iHeartMedia has continued to invest heavily in podcasting producing an ongoing slate of new iHeartRadio Original shows like “The Ron Burgundy Podcast,” “Disgraceland,” “Chelsea Handler: Life will be the Death of Me,” “Noble Blood” and “Committed,” as well as fostering over a hundred shows from its on-air talent like the popular “Bobbycast” and “The Breakfast Club” radio show podcasts. These shows are distributed on all major podcast platforms, including the iHeartRadio app, which additionally distributes more than 280,000 shows.
QUOTES: “UCP was among the first studios to recognize that podcasting was a goldmine of new IP for the TV and film industry,” said Conal Byrne, President of the iHeartPodcast Network. “What’s really special about this deal is that you have the biggest podcast network, with our team of expert podcast developers and producers who have been working in this medium for over 10 years honing the craft of audio storytelling, partnering with LA’s powerhouse production studio to now create and develop premium TV and film properties out of podcast IP.”
“Partnering with iHeart to not only adapt some of their enviable and extensive podcast library to television but also expand the production and reach of UCP Audio originals is a giant leap in our platform building strategy,” said Dawn Olmstead, President of UCP. “We look forward to making waves in the podcast space this year and we are very excited to have iHeart joining us on our endeavor.”
About Universal Content Productions (UCP)
UCP, a division of NBCUniversal Content Studios, is a premium content studio that operates with a highly curated indie sensibility, while simultaneously leveraging the power and scale of NBCU. As fierce advocates for creators with an eclectic point of view, the UCP team develops pioneering and award-winning scripted programming with partners such as Amazon (“Homecoming”), Netflix (“The Umbrella Academy,” “Brand New Cherry Flavor”), and Hulu (“The Act”), as well as NBCUniversal’s Peacock (“Dr. Death,” “Brave New World,” “Battlestar Galactica,” “Angelyne,” “Punky Brewster”), USA (“Mr. Robot,” “The Sinner,” “The Purge,” “Dirty John,” “Briarpatch,” “Treadstone,” “Dare Me”) and SYFY (“Resident Alien,” “The Magicians”). UCP’s content library also features more than 800 hours of award-winning and critically-acclaimed content, including “Monk,” “Battlestar Galactica” and “Psych.” The studio will be launching UCP Audio in 2020 with original scripted and unscripted podcasts.