Wattpad has announced a partnership with Sony Pictures Television to co-produce original programming of Wattpad’s stories for TV.
Sony will now make use of Wattpad’s data insights from its 70 million monthly users.
The two companies will work to identify and develop popular narratives from the half a billion story uploads that have been shared on Wattpad, aiming to bring these stories to television screens. The deal will be overseen by Eric Lehrman, Wattpad’s head of content development and production. Wattpad is represented by United Talent Agency (UTA), who helped broker the deal.
“Our entertainment partners all over the world have seen the power of our data-backed approach to IP discovery and development,” said Aron Levitz, head of Wattpad Studios. “The stories and diverse voices on Wattpad deserve to be heard all over the world. And our partnership with Sony does just that, bringing Wattpad stories to new and existing fans all over the planet.”
Sony will now make use of Wattpad’s data insights from its 70 million monthly users. With Wattpad’s machine learning technology, the company said Sony can discover new intellectual property and storytellers, creating a data-to-development process that would bring new audience insights to the industry.
Wattpad’s deal with Sony follows some new partnerships for the online story platform. Last month, it announced a partnership and strategic investment with Times Bridge, the global investments and partnerships arm of Indian media conglomerate, Times Group. In August, Wattpad formed a content partnership with Malaysia-based streaming service Iflix to co-produce its users’ stories for Iflix users in Asia, the Middle East, and Africa. At the beginning of the year, the company created a publishing division, Wattpad Books.
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“By helping some of the largest entertainment companies advance the way they use data, Wattpad has solidified itself as a powerful platform to identify new content, spot emerging trends and help Wattpad creators transition IP into film and television,” said Oren Rosenbaum, UTA’s head of emerging platforms. “This new partnership with Sony will competitively position both companies in the ever-changing content ecosystem.”
The deal follows the recent announcement that Wattpad, Sony, and Stampede are developing Death Is My BFF for American cable channel, SYFY. The series of stories written by Katerina E. Tonks has more than 62 million reads to date on Wattpad.
Wattpad also co-produces the series Light as a Feather with AwesomenessTV and Grammnet for Hulu. The show’s second season is currently in production. Wattpad’s film After is currently in theatres, and Netflix’s The Kissing Booth started on Wattpad, where it accumulated 19 million reads. To date, nearly one thousand Wattpad stories have been turned into books, TV shows, and films.