As part of the deal, the media company will enter into a creative and strategic alliance with longtime radio show This American Life, which developed the original Serial pod, about the murder conviction of Adnan Syed. The first season was downloaded on average 20 million times per episode and was at the forefront of the podcast boom.
Serial Productions is led by Julie Snyder, Sarah Koenig and Neil Drumming. At its new home with the NYT it will continue to commission and edit its own stories, which will be amplified by the paper, and the goal is to inject more resource and up the producer’s volume. The first joint production will be Nice White Parents, which will see Chana Joffe-Walt examine the role white families play in shaping public education.
This American Life will remain an independent company and will continue to broadcast a weekly public radio program/pod fronted by Ira Glass. Several of its episodes have been developed into TV/film properties, including the 2016 episode In Defense of Ignorance, which formed the basis for Lulu Wang’s The Farewell.
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