9:02am PT by Natalie Jarvey
E! to Air AwesomenessTV Movie 'Side Effects'
YouTube series Side Effects is making its way to cable TV.
E! will broadcast the musical drama on Friday, April 17, as a 90-minute movie ahead of its third-season premiere on YouTube.
Co-produced by AwesomenessTV and Universal Cable Productions, Side Effects originally debuted in 2013 as a long-form special on the AwesomenessTV YouTube channel. A sequel aired in May 2014 as a four-episode series that debuted on the ATV app before making its way to YouTube. A third season will premiere April 18 on the ATV YouTube channel.
"Side Effects was the first time we experimented with long-form content on YouTube and it was a huge success," said ATV CEO Brian Robbins. "Now viewers can choose to watch it as a movie on E!, download it or watch the third season on AwesomenessTV. In this on-demand universe, we want to engage our audience wherever they are."
The series, which tells the story of teenager Whitney Connolly, who takes prescribed medicine and is thrown into musical hallucinations, generated more than 2 million views in its first week on YouTube. Covers of pop hits such as Katy Perry's "Roar" and Ellie Goulding's "Burn" occur throughout the Glee-style project.
Side Effects stars Chester See, Meg DeLacy, Lulu Antariksa, Cande Canon Ball, Finn Roberts and Keli Price. YouTube creators Grace Helbig, GloZell, Lia Marie Johnson, Arden Rose and Meghan Rienks also star.
"With its tremendous launch on AwesomenessTV and now its debut on E!, Side Effects proves that great content can gain traction in all forms of distribution," said Aimee Carlson, vp digital and scripted development at UCP. "As a studio, Universal Cable Productions remains invested in creating this kind of quality content for a variety of platforms."
Side Effects is executive produced by Robbins, Joe Davola, Shauna Phelan, See and Allison Schroeder, who also wrote the series. It is directed by Matt Stawski.
Watch the season three trailer here: