NBC will release the new show’s first episode on the Clear Channel digital platform and app (as well as NBC’s own website and app, Hulu, Xfinity and the NBC owned and affiliate station websites and cable, satellite and telco providers On Demand and online services) on Thursday, Aug. 14 — seven weeks before its linear launch on Oct. 2.
The online version, which pubs note bows six months before Valentine’s Day, will also be 90 seconds longer than the version that will air on the network.
“NBC is very excited to partner with Clear Channel on this first-ever digital opportunity that will give viewers and audiences a chance to fall in love early with ‘A to Z,'” said Len Fogge, president of marketing and digital for NBC Entertainment. “Viewers today love to customize their viewing experience — deciding not only what to watch, but when and how — and we couldn’t imagine a more fitting project than ‘A to Z’ to debut in this innovative way.”
An early digital-first release is becoming du jour for TV releases. Cabler Starz touted ratings success by an early multiplatform viewing of its historical drama “Outlander,” while Showtime routinely releases the first episodes of its buzzed-about series on YouTube before their scheduled television premieres.
“A to Z,” which stars “Mad Men’s” Ben Feldman and “How I Met Your Mother’s” Cristin Milioti as nearly star-crossed lovers, is exec produced by Ben Queen (“Drive”), Rashida Jones (“Parks and Recreation”), Will McCormack (“Celeste & Jesse Forever”), Bill Callahan (“Psych”) and Michael Patrick Jann (“Reno 911!”). Queen wrote the pilot, which was directed by Jann. “A to Z” is a production of Warner Bros. Television and Le Train Train Productions.
Watch the pilot of “A to Z” below.