NBCUniversal getting into superhero biz


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Comcast’s NBCUniversal is getting into the superhero business.

The media giant has entered into a venture with Guardian Media Entertainment, parent of the Guardian Project, a new franchise of superheroes created by Stan Lee and done in partnership with the National Hockey League.

The Guardian Project was unveiled earlier this year during the NHL All-Star game, which was carried by NBCUniversal’s Versus cable channel. The characters are named for the 30 hockey teams in the league and will be used as a promotional tool for the sport.


As part of the agreement, NBCUniversal will promote the Guardian Project on its various media platforms. In return, NBCUniversal is getting an equity stake in Guardian Media Entertainment. Content that could emerge from the venture include graphic novels, television series and movies.

The deal deepens the relationship between NBCUniversal and the NHL. NBC recently extended its deal to carry the television rights for the NHL on both its broadcast and cable properties through the next 10 years.

“Since the inception of GME, our goal has been to partner with a major media company that has broadly distributed consumer platforms to exponentially increase the awareness and scope of The Guardian Project,” said Mark Terry, chief operating officer of GME.

“We’re starting a conversation with the next generation of NHL fans and NBCUniversal’s strength as a global media company, its commitment to hockey and its proven track record of leveraging sports and entertainment will elevate The Guardian Project within the NHL fan base and beyond,” said Brian Jennings, the NHL’s executive vice president of marketing.

-- Joe Flint


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