'Can You Ever Forgive Me?' Producer, Above Average Plan Diverse Comedy Projects (Exclusive)
The first project is shortform comedy series 'AstroTypes' from creator Shruti Ganguly.
Can You Ever Forgive Me? producer Archer Gray has teamed with Broadway Video's Above Average digital studio to develop projects from diverse comedy voices.
The two companies are planning a slate of projects over the next year starting with shortform comedy AstroTypes from creator Shruti Ganguly, a filmmaker who previously worked at MTV, Conde Nast and Nylon.
Created in association with Nylon, the series is envisioned as a modern, comedic take on the stereotypes in the Zodiac. Each season will center on a theme, and individual episodes will use a mockumentary style to satirize a specific Zodiac sign. The plan is to cast a diverse group of women for the series.
AstroTypes will kick off a partnership that will see Above Average, born out of Lorne Michaels' Broadway Video, and Archer Gray set up a content development fund. Archer Gray will finance the venture, while Above Average will tap its comedy network to identify talent and provide development and production support. Both companies will have the power to greenlight projects, and Archer Gray will serve as executive producer.
All projects will be required to highlight diversity and inclusion through both the stories being told and the cast and crew hired.
"As we grow in the digital space, Archer Gray looks to identify like-minded partners to produce quality content for the marketplace," said Archer Gray partner Vinay Singh. "Above Average shares our passion for great stories and understands our mission to take diversity and inclusion seriously. Through our deal with them, we're excited to discover some of tomorrow's next great comedic talents."
Added Ally Engelberg, director of development at Above Average, "We are thrilled to partner with Archer Gray to create new opportunities for well-deserved members of underrepresented groups. It is increasingly important for all people to be represented both in front of and behind the camera, and we look forward to using this fund to develop and create with these voices."
Archer Gray is a production company and venture capital firm known for such projects as 20th Century Women and Mr. Holmes. It is behind the upcoming Fox Searchlight film Can You Ever Forgive Me?, starring Melissa McCarthy. Above Average, meanwhile, has produced digital series 7 Minutes in Heaven and Live @ the Apt.