Santa Monica's Lionsgate To Partner With Vancouver's RocketJump

Tuesday, 22 Apr 2014, 9:06:00 AM

Parimal M. Rohit

While a version of this article might be printed in a newspaper, the mantra nowadays is digital content is the wave of the present and future. In an attempt to capitalize on the consumer market for digital content, Santa Monica-based Lionsgate announced last Monday a multi-year partnership with Vancouver’s RocketJump Studios. The partnership was created to deliver film, television, and digital content.

RocketJump, which was founded four years ago by Matt Arnold, Dez Dolly, and Freddie Wong, made a name for itself as a digital studio and, according to a statement released by Lionsgate, was considered one of YouTube’s “hottest innovators.” One of the studio’s most popular products is the web-series “Video Game High School.” The series is now in its third season.

“This partnership unites two entrepreneurial companies with similar cultures and a shared commitment to build new models for creating and delivering content to the next generation of audiences,” Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer said. “Freddie Wong is one of digital media’s most prolific and visionary creators, and RocketJump is a bold and innovative platform that expands the breadth and diversity of content we bring to our audiences and extends our storytelling abilities in exciting new directions.”

According to Lionsgate, the partnership allows the entertainment company to access RocketJump’s forthcoming docket of digital content as well as its in-house talent and fan base.

Meanwhile, the announced partnership is expected to provide RocketJump with access to content leadership and international marketing arm, allowing the digital studio to add long-form content to its roster while also expanding its base of podcasts, tutorials, and weekly shorts.

Also as part of the partnership, Lionsgate has an opportunity to expand its digital portfolio to include RocketJump. Lionsgate already has a stake in the Defy Media online platform and the BeFit fitness channel on YouTube.

The Santa Monica-based company also is behind original programming on digital platforms, such as “Deadbeat” on Hulu and “Orange is the New Black” on Netflix.

In all, Lionsgate has almost 400 million followers on Facebook and boasts 34 television series being broadcast on 22 different networks and a 15,000-title film and television library that includes box-office-friendly franchises such as “The Hunger Games,” “Twilight,” and “Divergent.”

RocketJump, originally founded in 2010 as the FreddieW channel on YouTube, has an estimated 6.8 million subscribers and almost one billion views across its platforms, which include YouTube and RocketJump.com.

The digital entertainment company states it “specializes in development, production and distribution of original web video content, TV shows and feature films.”

According to RocketJump, the first season of Video Game High School drew about 55 million viewers. When the company launched a Kickstarter campaign for the series’ second season, RocketJump raised $800,000 in 28 days. Crowd sourcing also funded the third season of the series, which is currently filming in Los Angeles.

“It’s rare to find a corporate partner who encourages true creativity, but our meetings with Lionsgate’s creative team convinced us that this is the right move for RocketJump and our millions of fans,” Wong said.

Details about what content Lionsgate and RocketJump will work on together as part of the multi-year partnership will be revealed as future announcements are made.

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