It’s not just for laughs anymore: My Damn Channel, which started out in 2007 as an online-comedy video destination, has redubbed itself Omnivision Entertainment as part of its plans to expand branded-entertainment and talent development initiatives.
The company also announced that it has signed development deal with Finland-based YouTube star Sara Maria Forsberg, whose video “What Languages Sound Like to Foreigners” has garnered 10.6 million views in about a month.
Seven years after launching My Damn Channel, “traditional, digital and social media companies are forging powerful partnerships with a united vision to earn passionate fans and build thriving businesses together,” CEO and Rob Barnett said.
Under the multiyear deal with Forsberg, Omnivision will work with the 19-year-old to co-create content to be available on existing and new YouTube channels, MyDamnChannel.com and other platforms starting next month. Forsberg will start working for Omnivision from Pietarsaari, Finland, but she hopes to eventually relocate to Los Angeles. Omnivision will be her exclusive worldwide manager in partnership with YRC Finland Oy, pursuing advertising, online, film, TV, theatrical, print and other opportunities. Forsberg is scheduled to make her U.S. television debut with an April 7 appearance on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” and is also planning to launch her music career with a major record label.
Omnivision recently cut a deal with Turner’s HLN to produce “Videocracy,” a series about the most buzz-worthy entertainment stories in the news — its first content for TV. It plans to continue to produce and distribute premium content for all platforms. The evolution from My Damn Channel’s comedy origins has been under way for a few years, and the company has produced several hundred hours of programming across genres including comedy, music, unscripted reality and live variety programming.
With the name change, Barnett will retain his current position as founder and CEO, while co-founder Warren Chao has been elevated to president.
The New York-based company’s investors include Intuitive Venture Partners, Shea Ventures, Okapi Venture Capital and Sunshine Wireless.