Maker Studios to develop programs based on Marvel 'lore'

Maker Studios will enter the Marvel universe with online content

Maker Studios is finding that belonging to the Walt Disney Co. has its privileges -- such as access to the Marvel universe.

The production company that distributes its content online via YouTube announced Tuesday that it plans to develop original programs that are based on Marvel "lore and current releases" and celebrate the comic book brand's fans.

Exactly what that content will be or when it will show up remains to be seen. Maker declined to provide details.

Disney has owned Marvel Entertainment and its vast array of superhero characters that include Iron Man, Daredevil, the Avengers and Spider-man since 2009. The company purchased Maker  last year in a deal valued at nearly $1 billion.

Maker unveiled the Marvel connection at its "newfront," one of the many presentations digital content companies are making this week to get a piece of the advertising dollar commitments that have traditionally gone to the fall TV season.

Maker's pitch is aimed at advertisers who want to reach millennials, age 13 to 34, who spend an increasing number of hours watching video online and on mobile devices. Sixty percent of that age group visits YouTube at least once a day, according to the company's data. Maker Chief Content Officer Erin McPherson said 80% watch short form video online each day.

Among the new offerings coming up from Maker are a late night-style talk show featuring comedian actor Taryn Southern, a series from designer and entrepreneur Rachel Zoe, and "Party Girl," a scripted show from digital comic Lisa Schwartz. The comedy is based on her experience as a birthday party entertainer in Los Angeles.

Maker is also getting a new entry from Matthew Clarke and David Pilchard, the creators of the popular "Convos with my 2-year-old." Kids will be treated as celebrity subjects in "Toddlers Tonight," a sendup of entertainment magazine shows.

Maker is also collaborating with ABC's Lincoln Square Productions on a docu-series called "American Woman," in which a group of women hit the road to learn about the women behind the nation's founding fathers.

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