Viacom Thursday announced that Atom Films, the online video provider, has relaunched itself as Atom.com and will become Comedy Central’s exclusive partner for the multiplatform distribution of original comedy content.
Atom.com will distribute content across the Internet, handheld devices, gaming platforms, mobile phones, television and other “other gadgets still to be invented,” network officials said. It will also continue to develop Atom TV, a half-hour TV series that debuted this week on Comedy Central.
“We want Atom.com to provoke, break rules and uncover talent much as Comedy Central did at its inception on cable,” Erik Flannigan, executive vice president, digital media, MTVN Entertainment Group, said in a statement. “If we get this right, Atom.com will be our punk-rock label and help to bring fresh, provocative comedy to every screen our audience is watching.”
Atom.com's programming lineup features daily new releases of original comedy including animation, live-action narrative, topical videos, sketch comedies and spoofs. The site also offers a library of thousands of comedy productions previously developed by, licensed by and uploaded to AtomFilms and Comedy Central.
At launch, Atom.com is premiering four new Web series including:
-- Border Patrol, produced by Josh Greenbaum, Ben McMillan and comedy legend Ivan Reitman (Old School, Ghostbusters), centers on three slacker friends who spend their weekends in lawn chairs at the Mexican border determined to stop illegal immigration. Border Patrol is the first Atom Original to sign a Webisode-to-episode on-air development deal with the network.
-- Steven & Stephen, from Adult Swim stars Tim Heidecker & Eric Wareheim (Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!), about two groin-conjoined, Internet-obsessed twins.
-- Stickman Exodus, from Waverly Films, in which stick figures, doodled into existence by a bored high-school student, search for the "promised page" in the kid's notebook.
-- Benny, Escaped Convict, co-created by television writer Ryan Levin (Scrubs) and award-winning animator Nye Warburton, chronicles the exploits of a foulmouthed rodent on the lam.
Network officials said Atom.com is also in production on dozens more original properties that will debut in coming months, including: My Best Friend Is My Penis, starring Jon Togo (CSI Miami); topical pop culture videos from a stable of creators including Blame Society Productions (Chad Vader); the gaming parody Legend of Neil and the urban legend comedy series Never Do This.
The new Atom.com Web site will replace both AtomFilms.com, a 2008 Webby Award finalist, and AtomUploads.com, bringing "professionally produced titles and amateur comedy content together on one site," newtork officials said.