Amazon is moving closer to launching its first original series. Amazon Studios, the content development division of the online retailer, is finalizing a deal for a pilot order to Browsers, a single-camera comedy from writer David Javerbaum and 3 Arts Entertainment. The project revolves around four interns who work at a Huffington Post-type website. Javerbaum is executive producing with 3 Arts’ David Miner, with filming eyed for a January start.
Amazon Studios signaled an entry into original series in May when it announced its plans to develop comedy and children’s programming. The company’s comedy development efforts have been spearheaded by Joe Lewis who previously worked as a development/production executive at 20th Century Fox TV and Comedy Central. During Lewis’ stint at Comedy Central, Javerbaum worked on the network’s The Daily Show where he rose to executive producer.
With a pilot order, Amazon is staying closer to the traditional network development process than fellow content streaming service Netflix, which opted to go straight to series with its first original series. Additionally, Browsers hails from a professional TV writer and a Hollywood production/management company. That is not the strategy Amazon laid out in May, which involved going after projects uploaded to Amazon Studios’ site by aspiring creators. The best projects are getting their scripts and mini-bibles posted online for users to weigh in before Amazon brass decides which ones to pick up to series. There are seven comedy projects currently featured on Amazon’s online comedy slate. Javerbaum, repped by CAA and 3 Arts, recently won an Emmy for co-writing with Adam Schlesinger the opening song of the 2011 Tony Awards. He has 11 other Emmys as part of The Daily Show writing and producing teams.