AOL, Mark Burnett Team Up to Produce CliffsNotes Video Shorts

Mark Burnett - OWN - 2011
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'Humorous, irreverent' animated clips based off Mark Twain, William Shakespeare and Charles Dickens novels will debut on the site later this year.

NEW YORK - AOL has teamed with Mark Burnett, publisher John Wiley & Sons and independent film production firm Coalition Films to co-develop a series of comedic video shorts based on the CliffsNotes Literature Guides.

Financial terms of AOL's latest cotent deal weren't disclosed.

Stories from the likes of Mark Twain, William Shakespeare and Charles Dickens will come to this year as part of the partnership.
The companies said they plan for "humorous, irreverent" animated shorts that will still present plot, characters and themes of classic pieces of literature.

Burnett’s One Three Inc. in partnership with Coalition Films acquired the rights from Wiley to develop CliffsNotes videos. 

“Mark is one of the most creative and talented people in our industry, and this agreement will further strengthen AOL’s video offerings,” said AOL chairman and CEO Tim Armstrong. “Video is core to AOL’s consumer strategy and our goal is to build and partner to produce the best video experiences online.”

“CliffsNotes is perfect for the short form production format of the web,” said Burnett.  “Young Americans are going to love these irreverent, comedic, educational and entertaining versions of the great books.”

AOL has been expanding its text and video offers under Armstrong. It recently unveiled a partnership with Heidi Klum, among other things.