Amazon Studios has selected five original series — comedies “Alpha House” and “Betas,” along with kids’ shows “Annebots,” “Creative Galaxy” and “Tumbleaf” — to become full series, available via the Internet retailer’s subscription video service starting later in 2013.
The company picked the quintet after inviting users of Amazon and the U.K.’s LoveFilm movie service to view pilots for 14 shows in mid-April and submit feedback.
“We built Amazon Studios so that customers could help decide which stories would make the very best movies and TV shows,” said Roy Price, director of Amazon Studios. “It’s exciting to see the process in motion, doing exactly what we set out to do. The success of this first set of pilots has given us the push to try this approach with even more shows — this is just the beginning.”
Among those not making the cut: “Zombieland,” a comedy based on 2009 cult pic; “Onion News Empire” scripted series supposedly following the behind-the-scenes antics at The Onion News Network featuring Jeffrey Tambor; and kidvid “Teeny Tiny Dogs,” produced by The Jim Henson Co.
“Alpha House” (pictured above), starring John Goodman, was written by Garry Trudeau and produced by Elliot Webb and Jonathan Alter. Laffer centers on four misfit senators turned unlikely roommates (Goodman with Clark Johnson, Matt Malloy and Mark Consuelos) who rent a house together in Washington, D.C.
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The other comedy, “Betas,” is set in the land of Silicon Valley startups. Written by Evan Endicott and Josh Stoddard, skein follows four friends as they attempt to strike it rich with a new mobile social networking app. Ed Begley Jr., Jon Daly, Joe Dinicol, Charlie Saxton and Karan Soni star in the show. Michael Lehmann will direct and produce along with Alan Freedland, Alan Cohen and Michael London.
The three children’s series are: “Annebots,” science-based series from J.J. Johnson; “Creative Galaxy,” an animated adventure series from Angela Santomero (co-creator of “Blue’s Clues” and “Super Why!”); and “Tumbleaf,” show aimed at preschool set created by Drew Hodges and Kelli Bixler of stop-motion studio Bix Pix Entertainment.
Amazon Studios, launched in November 2010, currently has 24 movies on its development slate and in the processes of being tested with audiences.