On Thursday, January 11th, CMA hosted NY production powerhouse Out of the Blue at the National Opera Center of America. At the event, producers Samantha Freeman, Alexandra Cassel, Sarah Wallendjack and Wendy Harris shared the company’s founding story and how it has become a leading name in the industry.
With 12 years of business under their belt, Out of the Blue has created five series and over 250 episodes of preschool television. In addition, they have won over 20 awards across media platforms and continue to produce challenging and fun content for kids. The event offered insight into how Out of the Blue has grown and maintained their portfolio over the years. With a fine tuned vision for its purpose, the company propelled itself beyond television production and into multi-platform branding and licensing, developing a varied portfolio of online content, television shows, apps, live shows, toys and consumer products. Producers shared that these many legs of the company couldn’t be supported without their own special company touchstones: staying true to their shared vision, collaborating with stakeholders, and staying committed to the stories being told and the experiences they create. These key standards are greatly important as the company expands, covering a growing slate of production resources.
During the event, producers shared clips from some of their most successful titles and discussed how their core values have influenced what they are creating. For Super Why! we got to see how customized research plans made for valuable and enjoyable learning experiences for viewers. The clip included research sessions of kids interacting with Super Why!, responding to prompts within the show. Other clips shown during the night included snippets from Wishenpoof, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, and Creative Galaxy.
Out of the Blue producers also used the evening to announce the expansion of its development program. The company is calling for creatives to pitch unique stories with engaging characters and dynamic imagery. They are interested only in mixed media and animated series submissions for ages two to six, at the moment. Pitches don’t need to be gender specific or toy driven. With their official RFP announced, Out of the Blue will next look to engage in development agreements and eventually collaborate on a pitch bible with their selected creators. Pitches are being accepted between February and March of 2018, and should not have been previously pitched to Out of the Blue or other production companies. If you are interested in sending a pitch, you can do so at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The night ended with Out of the Blue producers saying that big news was in the pipeline for the company, and while they couldn’t share what it was during our event, news broke the next day that 9 Story Media Group had acquired Out of the Blue Enterprises. 9 Story has collaborated with Out of the Blue on Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood and Creative Galaxy. Given this joining of the forces, we are excited to see how this further broadens the company’s platforms and brands.
You can watch a full recording of the event via the following link. Log in to our website here – video is available to CMA members only.