Known for being an incubator for original stories, multi-platform entertainment company Wattpad is expanding its reach with a new partnership with Sony Pictures Television to develop and co-produce original programming for television. The collaboration gives Sony a first-look at the up-and-coming stories from the Wattpad platform.
Under the deal, Wattpad and Sony will work together to identify and develop narratives from half a billion story uploads that have been shared on Wattpad. The library provides a bank of diverse and emerging voices from around the world. The deal will be overseen by Eric Lehrman, Wattpad’s Head of Content Development and Production.
“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. “Wattpad stories are some of the most innovative and creative that have ever been written. 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.”
“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,” adds UTA Head of Emerging Platforms, Oren Rosenbaum. “This new partnership with Sony will competitively position both companies in the ever-changing content ecosystem.”
Sony has struck gold with its partnership and Wattpad will certainly benefit as well. Sony will benefit from the billions of daily data insights generated on Wattpad, where 70 million monthly users engage with stories from every genre. With its Story DNA Machine Learning technology Wattpad is able to identify new IP and storytellers with exceptional potential, creating a data-to-development process that is transforming the industry with audience insights.
Wattpad is not only changing the landscape of storytelling by providing new voices a platform, but it is also making major moves in the industry with its IP. This new deal with Sony follows the recent announcement that Wattpad, Sony Pictures Television, and Stampede are developing Death Is My BFF for Syfy. Death is My BFF is a series of stories from Katerina E. Tonks which has more than 62 million reads to date on Wattpad. Lindsey Rosin (Cruel Intentions) is slated to write the series. In addition to Syfy, Wattpad has also found success with international entertainment partners including iflix, eOne, Huayi Brothers Korea, among others.
In addition, Wattpad produces the Emmy-nominated Hulu series Light as a Feather, based on the story written by Zoe Arson, with AwesomenessTV and Grammnet. Wattpad’s film After, which is based on Anna Todd’s Wattpad and best-selling novel is currently in theaters. Also from the Wattpad libraries is Netflix’s The Kissing Booth, based on the story written by Beth Reekles, where it accumulated 19 million reads and built an international fanbase.
Wattpad is repped by UTA, who helped broker the deal.