DreamWorks Animation’s AwesomenessTV online teen network has created a feature film division and picked a veteran entertainment industry executive to run it.
Awesomeness Films will release 12 to 15 titles through theatrical and digital distribution. Matt Kaplan, founder of production company Chapter One Films, in Los Angeles, and a senior vice president at Lionsgate Films, in Santa Monica, has been named as president, according to Hollywood Reporter.
Starting a film division is recognition by Awesomeness and its founder Brian Robbins of the importance of diversifying away from the short-form online content the company creates and distributes on its YouTube network.
In April, AwesomenessTV announced a deal in which it would distribute feature films over YouTube, a Google Inc. subsidiary in San Bruno.
“AwesomenessTV has made a major commitment to film production and we are looking to Matt with his strong track record in independent film to help us deliver on our very ambitious slate of films,” Robbins was quoted by Hollywood Reporter.
DreamWorks Animation acquired AwesomenessTV in 2013 for $33 million. It sold off a 25 percent stake to Hearst Corp. last year for $81 million.
DreamWorks shares closed down 28 cents, or 1 percent, to $27.48 on the Nasdaq.
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