Jon Chu waltzes onto Web

Director, Agility team on 'Dancers'

HOLLYWOOD — Director Jon Chu is stepping up to produce his next project for the Internet.

The helmer has paired up with Agility Studios to create “The Legion of Extraordinary Dancers” as a scripted Web series that follows the formation of an elite dance crew, the LXD.

Puma has come aboard as the project’s official footwear sponsor as part of Agility’s plans to generate revenue through advertising and sponsorships, as well as sales and subscriptions. Puma will push its new 917 shoe, integrating it into the series, and use the property to target the dance community.

First 10 weeks of the series, which Chu is writing, directing and editing, will bow early this summer; each segment will be seven to 10 minutes long. Plans are eventually to spin off the series into other forms of media that could include live events, tutorial videos, mobile programming, films, TV shows, licensing and merchandise, said Agility’s CEO Scott Ehrlich, a former top exec at Digworks and RealNetworks.

“It has multiple revenue streams and a premium talent who is fluent in all media,” Ehrlich said.

Launch of “LXD” comes as dance has turned into a profitable genre for film, TV and Web producers. Indeed, Creative Artists Agency has begun repping dancers, signing up Korean hip-hop agency Cartel Creative last week.

Chu most recently directed Disney’s “Step Up 2: The Streets,” which earned $148 million worldwide last year.

His “The Biggest Online Dance Battle in History,” a series of videos featuring top crews and celebrity cameos, attracted 45 million views online and exposure at YouTube Live last year.

Agility was formed late last year by new-media execs Ehrlich and former LivePlanet toppers Larry Tanz and Keith Quinn as a production shingle that focuses on launching content online before moving it across multiple platforms.

“Agility was the right partner for ‘The Legion of Extraordinary Dancers’ because they understood the vision of the next step in the dance revolution,” Chu said.

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