Turner 2017 Upfront: The Experience is Everything
May 19, 2017
Last week, the Turner family gathered in New York City to showcase our amazing content, latest programming and the incredible talent from our brands – Adult Swim, Cartoon Network, HLN, TBS, TNT, truTV and Turner Sports – at our 2017 Upfront. We shared our unified vision and commitment to reimagining consumer experiences and reinventing advertising to a packed house at The Theater at Madison Square Garden.
The Turner experience kicked off inside The Theater lobby with the help of the “social river wall,” an interactive fabric displaying 1,000 videos of our content and customizable just by touch. They also interacted face-to-face with their favorite Turner celebrities from the green room through talent pods.
And outside The Theater, talent and executives walked the “blue” carpet and talked with Turner social correspondent, Lance Fresh, about their latest projects.
During the 90-minute presentation, Donna Speciale, Turner Ad Sales president, and Kevin Reilly, TBS & TNT president, were joined on stage by the Turner family of talent, including Samantha Bee, James Corden, Anderson Cooper, Shaquille O’Neal, Conan O’Brien, Anthony Bourdain and Adam Conover. Together they demonstrated how the power of the Turner brands and our connection to audiences is creating omni-channel experiences for fans everywhere. They also drove the message that with investment in the best creative content and advertising innovations, we will continue to lead the change in our industry and elevate our global portfolio of brands.
Throughout the presentation, we also announced several new series and projects in development. Here are a few of the highlights:
- TBS four-year deal with Conan O'Brien that will keep his late-night show on TBS through 2022 and extend the Team Coco brand into digital content, podcasting, gaming, pay TV and live events.
- TBS greenlights: Miracle Workers, a comedy with Daniel Radcliffe and Owen Wilson and executive-produced by Lorne Michaels; Close Enough, animated series from Regular Show creator J.G. Quintel; and an untitled series from the comedy trio The Dress Up Gang. Snoop Dogg will refresh and update the classic game show The Joker's Wild and the forthcoming project starring Tracy Morgan is titled The Last O.G., and adds Cedric the Entertainer, Taylor Mosby and Dante Hoagland to the cast.
- TNT greenlights two documentary series: Michael Moore Live from the Apocalypse and Who Run the World? from Sarah Jessica Parker, Morgan Spurlock and Refinery29. The network has ordered a pilot for Highland, a scripted drama written by Liz Sarnoff and Margaret Cho and announced Daveed Diggs will star in the network's pilot Snowpiercer, which will be directed by Doctor Strange helmer Scott Derrickson.
- TNT is working with Ridley Scott to develop a night of original science-fiction programming.
- Super Deluxe will have its own 90-minute interactive, alternative late-night block on TBS called Super Deluxe.
- Adult Swim greenlights: The Jellies!, an animated series from Tyler, The Creator that will air this summer; and Mostly 4 Millennials, a live-action series created by and starring Derrick Beckles, and executive produced by Eric Andre. The network also announced a new special from comedian Jena Friedman and ordered a stop-motion animated pilot titled The Shivering Truth, created by Vernon Chatman and featuring the voices of Michael Cera and Jonah Hill.
- truTV's slate of five upcoming series includes Laff Mobb's Laff Tracks; At Home with Amy Sedaris; the comedic anthology series Bobcat Goldthwait's Misfits & Monsters; the scripted comedy I'm Sorry, from Andrea Savage; and the live call-in talk show The Chris Gethard Show.
- Cartoon Network recently greenlit Unikitty!, an animated series produced by Warner Bros, that will follows the Unkitty from the global blockbuster The LEGO Movie, and her whole cast of friends.
- CNN will add five new original series to its slate in 2018: Detroit 1963: Once in a Great City; American Heiress: The Patty Hearst Story; 1968: The Year That Changed America; Kennedys: An American Dynasty and Pope.
- HLN will debut Unmasking A Killer, a new five-part series 10 years in the making, about the investigation, the case files and the mind of The Golden State Killer.
We capped off the #TurnerUpfront experience with the annual late-night Adult Swim Upfront party at Terminal 5, featuring an exclusive performance by Drake. Artists Migos and Playboi Carti also made a surprise appearance and joined Drake on stage.
This year's upfront embodied the excitement about the year ahead and the future. To quote our Chariman and CEO John Martin, “in our next chapter at Turner, we’re not simply navigating a new media landscape, we’re reshaping it.”