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The DC universe is set to expand into podcasting through an expansive first-look licensing deal between Warner Bros. and Spotify.
The multiyear, multi-project pact will turn DC superheroes and supervillains into the subjects of a slate of scripted audio shows that will stream exclusively on Spotify. The companies aren’t disclosing whether Batman, Wonder Woman or other premier names will be the focus of the new projects, but indicated that the shows will feature iconic DC characters.
In addition to DC projects, Warner Bros. will look to turn other characters and franchises from its vast library of IP into Spotify podcasts. The deal also leaves room for the companies to produce new stories together not based on existing IP.
“As we continue to see explosive growth in podcasting around the world, we are thrilled to partner with Warner Bros. to build this slate of programming drawn from the worlds of DC and WB,” Dawn Ostroff, Spotify’s chief content and advertising business officer, said in a statement.
Warner Bros. will lead the development and production of the projects in collaboration with Spotify. Peter Girardi, executive vp of digital studio Blue Ribbon Content and of alternative programming at Warner Bros. Animation, will serve as the creative lead for the slate, while Robert Steele, senior vp business strategy and operations for Warner Bros. Digital Networks, will oversee the business side of the partnership.
“Spotify’s deep engagement with its consumers and commitment to prioritizing their podcast vertical makes them an ideal partner in this endeavor,” Steele and Girardi said in a joint statement.
The deal with Spotify follows the entertainment company’s foray into podcasting via a January partnership with Mick Jagger’s new venture, Rainy Day Podcasts. It comes after a similar — albeit less sprawling — podcast play by Marvel, which inked a 2019 deal with SiriusXM for a slate of exclusive shows.
For Spotify, the deal creates a pipeline of exclusive programming featuring a globally recognized characters and stories. It builds on the company’s recent moves to bring shows like The Joe Rogan Experience and Last Podcast on the Left to its platform exclusively. Spotify, which has 286 million users, also has a deal with Barack and Michelle Obama’s Higher Ground Audio for a slate of original podcasts.
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