Crackle Plus, the streaming service owned by Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment, is looking to push further into the original content game as it gears up to launch a new series dubbed “Inside the Black Box,” the first tangible piece of a multi-year deal the ad-supported platform inked with Publicis Media’s APX Content Ventures.
The function of APX, in short, is to provide financial backing—and little else—for original series and films, explained John Nolan, APX Content Ventures’ managing director, emphasizing that the Publicis Media-owned brand does not dictate the content of the projects that it funds.
Its role is to aid platforms in churning out higher-quality content more frequently—particularly when it comes to backing projects by creators of diverse racial backgrounds and genders—because “the better the stuff [entertainment platforms] make, the more value they have for Publicis clients,” he said. “We’re there to make the content that they want to make.”
This comes as brands and agencies look to work with more minority-owned platforms and diverse creators in an effort to reach and more authentically connect with multicultural audiences.
“They came to us with the concept of ‘Inside the Black Box,’” Nolan added of the Crackle team, which has been in discussion with APX about the show since as early as 2019.
Shaping up as a series of 10 one-hour episodes that’ll dive into the experiences of being Black in Hollywood, the show will be hosted by Emmy-winning actor Joe Morton alongside acting coach and casting director Tracey Moore, both of whom will engage in performance components and interviews with celebrity guests. It will premiere exclusively on Crackle Plus in mid-February.