Comedy Central and Refinery29 Team for Two All-Female Digital Series (EXCLUSIVE)

Will Thorne

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Comedy Central and Refinery29 have signed a digital content partnership to produce two comedy series featuring an all-female lineup of comedians, Variety has learned exclusively.

Slated to premiere spring 2020, the series will be co-branded and distributed on both Comedy Central and Refinery29’s digital platforms. While neither series is being eyed for a linear run at present, a release at some point on the ViacomCBS-owned cable channel isn’t out of the question given that Comedy Central owns the rights, according to sources.

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The first series, titled “CC x R29: Taking the Stage,” is a short-form stand-up series featuring a curation of showcase clips from a lineup of comedians. The second, “CC x R29: Speak Up,” will be a short-form storytelling series in which the comedians will share stories about speaking up and being heard.

“We are looking forward to this partnership with Refinery29 to create shareable digital content that elevates female creators,” said Sarah Babineau and Jonas Larsen, co-heads of original content at Comedy Central. “Amplifying female voices and perspectives is a critical, ongoing programming priority for Comedy Central with all formats and platforms, and Refinery29 is the perfect partner to supercharge our efforts in the digital-media space.”

The deal comes during a period of growth for Comedy Cenrtal’s production arm which was unveiled back in May. Since then, Comedy Central Productions has announced deals with former “Simpsons” co-EP Donick Cary, “Drunk History” co-creator Derek Waters, Aniello and Paul W. Downs’ shingle Paulilu, Anthony King, Daniel Powell and Alex Bach’s Irony Point, and Stuart Miller. 

“Comedy Central is a leader in championing dynamic storytelling, and as a brand that is dedicated to doing the same, we’re so excited to develop the next frontier of female-forward comedy together,” said Amy Emmerich, global president and chief content officer at Refinery29. “As ever, we are committed to being both a megaphone for these emerging female voices and a vital platform for these conversations with our audience.”

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