Blumhouse and iHeartMedia today announced a strategic partnership to produce a series of fictional podcasts for potential, future film and television development. Under the new partnership, the two companies will collaborate to develop and produce scripted podcasts in the horror genre, ranging from suspenseful thrillers and murder mysteries to science fiction audio-plays. The first podcast in the series is set to launch early next year and will be distributed through the iHeartPodcast Network.
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“The Mantawauk Caves” will be the first podcast co-produced by Blumhouse and iHeartMedia which is set to launch early next year. (Photo: Business Wire)
The first in the slate of co-produced podcasts is “The Mantawauk Caves” from writer, director, producer Dan Bush (The Signal, The Vault, The Dark Red). “The Mantawauk Caves” weaves together narrative threads of a social drama and supernatural horror, following three boys who enter a cave in the Appalachian Mountains – the oldest range in the world – and only one makes it out alive.
“We’re such avid fans of great podcasts at Blumhouse — the compelling storytelling that engrossing podcasts offer — and we were eager to partner with iHeartRadio to curate a slate of dark, fictional stories together,” said Jason Blum, founder of Blumhouse. “We’re thrilled the partnership has already produced ‘The Mantawauk Caves,’ the first of what we hope are several successful collaborations.”
“We think fiction is one of the next big genres in podcasting, tapping into the incredible imaginative power we all have – the theater of the mind – and so we couldn’t be more excited to bring this slate of shows into the world, starting with ‘The Mantawauk Caves,’” said Conal Byrne, President of the iHeartPodcast Network. “Blumhouse is truly masterful at creating some of the best suspense thrillers and horror movies around and, with their help, we can’t wait to introduce a series of captivating, world-class audio content to the iHeartPodcast Network.”
In addition to being available on iHeartRadio and all digital podcast platforms, full episodes and excerpts of the podcasts will also be distributed across iHeartMedia broadcast radio stations which reach more than a quarter of a billion monthly listeners, as well as via iHeartRadio’s social media channels, exposing them to millions of listeners across the country.
In success, future film and television projects will be produced by Blumhouse and iHeartMedia, borne out of the slate’s new intellectual property.
The scripted series podcast initiative will, like documentary films, be under the purview of Blumhouse Television Co-Presidents, Jeremy Gold and Marci Wiseman. Couper Samuelson will oversee feature films.
Blumhouse Productions is widely regarded as a driving force in the current horror renaissance and is widely recognized for its pioneering model of producing high-quality micro-budget films. The 2019 film Glass from M. NIght Shyamalan; 2017 blockbusters Split from M. Night Shyamalan; and Get Out from Jordan Peele, with combined budgets of less than $35 million, went on to gross more than $730 million worldwide. Glass was also Blumhouse’s 11th film to open at No. 1. In October 2018, the company’s Halloween posted the second-highest opening ($76 million) for a horror movie after IT. Blumhouse has also produced the highly profitable The Purge, Insidious, Sinister and Paranormal Activity franchises, which together have grossed more than $1.6 billion at the global box office. Paranormal Activity, which was made for $15,000 and grossed close to $200 million worldwide, launched the Blumhouse model and became the most profitable film of all time.
Blumhouse Television has earned critical acclaim and numerous honors for its dark, edgy fare including Emmy awards for its productions of HBO’s The Normal Heart and The Jinx, as well as the prestigious Peabody award for The Jinx and the documentary How to Dance in Ohio. Blumhouse Television launched as an independent studio in 2017 with funding from ITV. Projects since the studio’s launch include: the recently announced Showtime limited series Good Lord Bird, from Ethan Hawke, James McBride, Mark Richard and Anthony Hemingway; The Loudest Voice, the limited series, also for Showtime, based on journalist Gabriel Sherman’s reporting on former Fox News chief Roger Ailes, starring Russell Crowe, with Tom McCarthy writing and executive producing; and Sharp Objects, the limited series from Marti Noxon and Gillian Flynn for HBO based on Flynn’s best-selling novel of the same name, starring Amy Adams and directed by Jean-Marc Valle. The studio also produces The Purge, the #1 drama on USA Network this year, from writer/director/producer James DeMonaco and based on the popular film franchise; Sacred Lies, from Raelle Tucker for Facebook Watch; and the holiday themed anthology event series Into the Dark for Hulu. Blumhouse continues its true docuseries tradition with projects in production for FX, Sundance and Oxygen.
iHeartMedia is the number one audio company in the United States, reaching nine out of 10 Americans every month – and with its quarter of a billion monthly listeners, has a greater reach than any other media company in the U.S. The company’s leadership position in audio extends across multiple platforms including more than 850 live broadcast stations; streaming music, radio and on demand via its iHeartRadio digital service available across more than 250 platforms and 2,000 devices including smart speakers, digital auto dashes, tablets, wearables, smartphones, virtual assistants, TVs and gaming consoles; through its influencers; social; branded iconic live music events; and podcasts as the #1 commercial podcast publisher globally. iHeartMedia also leads the audio industry in analytics and attribution technology for its marketing partners, using data from its massive consumer base. iHeartMedia is a division of iHeartMedia, Inc. (NASDAQ: IHRT). Visit iHeartMedia.com for more company information.