Maria Menounos and Keven Undergaro’s AfterBuzz TV has partnered with Joseph Kapsch’s upcoming digital news platform The Populist for a newly weekly talk series, Variety has learned exclusively.
Titled “Meet the Hollywood Press” and hosted by Kapsch, the series will feature a rotating guest panel of entertainment industry journalists and personalities discussing the week’s biggest Hollywood news. The show will also feature in-depth discussions about topical issues affecting the industry such as the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements, female pay disparity, and diversity in Hollywood. It will also air special themed episodes around TV, movies, music, and awards season. The show will launch on June 24. Menounos, Undergaro and Kapsch will executive produce along with AfterBuzz TV COO Phil Svitek. The show will be available both in podcast format on iTunes and video format via YouTube, AfterBuzz, and The Populist immediately after its first run.
In addition, Undergaro will join the board of The Populist. AfterBuzz TV will then serve as producers of The Populist’s daily news shows while Kapsch’s team will serve as an editorial arm for AfterBuzz. Kapsch and his Populist staff will also appear as panelists on some of AfterBuzz’s TV after shows. Kapsch just recently wrapped a run as co-host of the weekly “AfterBuzz’s American Idol Aftershow.”
“When Kev pitched ‘Meet the Hollywood Press’ to me years ago, I told him to pause until we had the right host and the right network,” said Menounos “As for the right host, Joseph Kapsch’s extensive background running some of entertainment news’ most trusted digital outlets and his dynamic ability for conversation, make him the natural choice to produce and lead these important weekly discussions. Joseph and our team will also be assembling the industries’ top journalists to co-host, presenting the most diverse and balanced view possible. As far as the right network, AfterBuzz TV, with its colossal global reach that features a roster of over 400 original shows and provides the greatest, most in-depth and widest TV, movie and entertainment discussion, has ascended to truly become ‘the ESPN of TV Talk’. There is no network more perfectly suited to produce this show. We couldn’t be more excited.”
AfterBuzz TV produces after-shows for a wide range of TV shows, including “America’s Next Top Model,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” and “The Walking Dead.” The company produces up to 200 hours of weekly programming in both video and audio form and receives up to one billion downloads annually.
The Populist marks Kapsch’s first ever turn as founder of a news startup in which he will also serve as editorial director. He formerly served as top digital news chief for the Hollywood Reporter, TheWrap, and Los Angeles Times, as well as Zap2it and Access Hollywood. Kapsch is also a seasoned on-air talent, having conducted on-camera interviews with stars like Jennifer Aniston, Viola Davis, Nick Jonas, Taylor Lautner, and Kristen Stewart.