NEW YORK – Above Average, a digital-first entertainment company that creates and distributes comedy programming, has promoted executive Marc Lieberman to president of studio. A new position at the company, this role includes oversight of creative development and production of original programming, as well as distribution of content through partnerships with networks and media companies.
Lieberman joined Above Average in 2013 as SVP, business development and production, and has been an integral part of the executive team for more than four years. His role has expanded along with the company’s studio division, and has successfully partnered with entertainment companies including Comedy Central, go90, IFC, NBC, TBS, truTV and YouTube Red to create premium comedy content.
Under his leadership, the company’s studio division will continue to develop and produce a growing slate of programming both internally and for digital and TV partners. Lieberman will oversee a bi-coastal team of talented studio executives, including Josh Poole (VP, development), Caroline Chewning (director, talent and development) and Ally Engelberg (manager, development), with a new west coast development executive being added soon. He continues to report directly to CEO Marc Hustvedt.
“Marc brings his impeccable taste in comedy and an eye for breaking emerging talent to this new role, along with an impressive track record of building Above Average as a premium brand in comedy,” said Hustvedt. “And this is only the beginning, with a strong line-up of head-turning projects coming out of our studio in the coming weeks and months.”
While at Above Average, Lieberman has overseen production for several series and specials, including Alec Baldwin’s Love Ride for multiple platforms including truTV; Jingle Ballin’ with Liza Koshy for YouTube Red; Thank You and Sorry with Jack Antonoff for Google Play/Sony Music Originals. Additionally, he spearheaded the conception and launch of Above Average’s sports comedy vertical, The Kicker, with Bryan Tucker (co-head writer, Saturday Night Live). To finance the launch, Lieberman orchestrated a partnership with Vox Media, Lenovo and the NFL.
“I’m proud of the progress our development team has made over the past few years and I’m honored to be expanding my role during this very exciting time for Above Average,” added Lieberman. “We plan to provide great comedic relief on every platform, network, device and screen currently known and that have yet to be invented (that have with deep enough pockets to afford us).”
Prior to joining Above Average, Lieberman was vice president of business development at The Onion and a producer for the Onion News Network, for which he won a Peabody and numerous Webby awards. There he sourced and negotiated the largest partnerships in the company’s almost 30-year history including the Onion News Network on IFC,Onion Sportsdome on Comedy Central, Onion News Empire for Amazon, Onion Talks for YouTube Originals, and Onion Future: News from the Year 2137 on iTunes.
Lieberman’s first job in the entertainment industry was as an assistant to Bobby Newmyer at Outlaw Productions, working on films such as Training Day and Santa Clause 2. He then went on to co-found Cavalier Films where he produced and financed independent films including Familiar Strangers (starring Shawn Hatosy, DJ Qualls and Nikki Reed) and Adam (starring Rose Byrne and Hugh Dancy).
After graduating from the University of Virginia’s McIntire School of Commerce, Lieberman began his professional career working in corporate finance at Intel and Macromedia before transitioning to business development for Allen Debevoise’s start-up, Creative Planet
About Above Average
Above Average is a digital-first entertainment company that creates and distributes award-winning comedy programing for platforms, brands and fans. Guided by a creator-first philosophy, the company works with the industry's top comedians and celebrities, as well as rising stars of tomorrow – from Alec Baldwin and Vanessa Bayer to Liza Koshy. Above Average partners with leading networks and media companies including Comedy Central, go90, IFC, NBC, TBS, truTV and YouTube Red, and brands such as Pepsi, Marriott and Chex Mix, to bring world class comedy content of all formats to audiences across digital devices, TV screens and social media.
Above Average’s owned-and-operated channels are home to short-form original series such as 7 Minutes in Heaven, Alec Baldwin's Love Ride, Hudson Valley Ballers, Small Town Hackers, Sound Advice and Storytime. In 2015, Above Average launched the web’s leading sports comedy destination, The Kicker, led editorially by SNL co-head writer Bryan Tucker. Founded in 2012 as an independent subsidiary of Lorne Michaels’ Broadway Video, Above Average enjoys a 40-year TV and film legacy.