Sam Raimi
Denis Makarenko /

Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman have just announced plans to launch a new streaming service, NewTV from WndrCo.  The service is planned to launch in either late 2019 or early 2020 and what sets it apart from other services, is that NewTV episodes will only be 10-minutes or less in length.  But this won’t just be a version of Youtube that you have to pay for.  Katzenberg is rounding up top talent to create programming and the first name announced is Sam Raimi, the mastermind behind the ‘Evil Dead’ franchise and helmer of Sony’s first three ‘Spider-Man’ movies.  Raimi will deliver a new series entitled ’50 States of Fear’.

According to Deadline:

“Van Toffler and Gunpowder & Sky will produce alongside Tony DiSanto who developed the project through DiGa Studios, part of the newly announced Allyance Media Group Company. Tommy Coriale will executive produce for DiGa, while Sam Raimi’s producing partner Debbie Liebling also exec produces.”

No further information about ’50 States of Fear’ was announced.  Beyond ‘Evil Dead’, including the recently concluded ‘Ash Vs. Evil Dead’ on Starz and ‘Spider-Man’, Raimi spent many years working in television, in a longer format.  He has delivered ‘Hercules: The Legendary Journeys’ as well as spin-offs ‘Young Hercules’ (which starred a pre-fame Ryan Gosling) and ‘Xena: Warrior Princess’, ‘M.A.N.T.I.S.’, ‘American Gothic’, and STARZ’s ‘Spartacus’ brand.

NewTV has raised $1 billion in seed money collected from such major players as “Disney, eOne, Fox, ITV, Lionsgate, MGM, NBCUniversal, Sony Pictures, Viacom, and WarnerMedia. Technology investors include e-commerce giant Alibaba. Strategic partner investors include Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Liberty Global and Madrone Capital.”

According to Katzenberg and Whitman, NewTV will be available in two formats, a $5 per month tier which features ads and an $8 per month tier which is ad-free.  According to Whitman, the ads on NewTV will be longer and more cinematic than typical TV commercials and viewers will have the option to skip them.

Check back for any additional upsets as they arrive.