Site adds to talent roster that includes Spade, DeGeneres, Stone, Banks
Z.com has inked exclusive content development pacts with comedians Chris Rock and Mike Judge to create programming for the entertainment Netcaster.Deals are expected to be announced today by Z CEO Joe DiNunzio at the Hollywood Radio and Television Society newsmaker’s luncheon in Beverly Hills. As part of the deal, Z will host Rock’s official Web site, which will operate as a fan site and serve as the online platform for any original entertainment projects he decides to create, such as animated programming or the posting of behind-the-scenes footage from his HBO standup specials, for example. Site is skedded to launch sometime next month. Rock hosts HBO’s “The Chris Rock Show” and starred in “Lethal Weapon 4.” As for Z’s deal with Judge (“Office Space,” “Beavis and Butt-Head”), specific plans for his site have yet to be determined although it will serve as an official fan site. Online destination will launch before the end of the year. Both artists received stock in the company. “Our objective is to build long-term relationships with talent in that they can create original programming that’s best suited for the Web,” DiNunzio said. “This allows them to invest in us, and we can invest in them and gives us the opportunity to experiment, learn from the audience and grow.” Only weeks after its launch, Z has already inked deals with David Spade, Ellen DeGeneres, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Oliver Stone and Tyra Banks. Burbank-based Z.com is a venture formed by Idealab!, Brad Grey’s Basic Entertainment, 3 Arts Entertainment, Jerry Bruckheimer and Maverick Records partner Guy Oseary.