Legendary Entertainment has added yet another notch to its YouTube belt this morning with the announcement that it will buy Smart Girls at the Party, the women-first digital network fronted by comedian, actress, and flawless American icon Amy Poehler. The deal was announced yesterday in true YouTube fashion with a hand filmed iPhone vlog from Poehler herself. The announcement didn’t come with any specifics, but Amy promises that the partnership will yield more of the programming fans have come to love as well as new projects from Smart Girls creators, presumably backed by Legendary financing and resources.
Smart Girls at the Party joins Legendary’s growing collection of digital properties, and it should fit right in. Smart Girls shares a lot of DNA with Legendary’s other recent acquisitions, Chris Hardwick’s Nerdist Enterprises and Felicia Day’s Geek and Sundry network. Legendary seems to have an appetite for digital entertainment with a quirky geek-friendly sensibility fronted by Hollywood famous faces. Like Smart Girls, all three networks were also launched out of YouTube’s Original Channel Initiative and managed to survive after the funding program was shuttered for good, suggesting that Legendary may be the real winner of YouTube’s first original content push.
Now shuttered, the Original Channel Initiative aimed to bring new and higher quality content to YouTube by financing a slew of new channels, many of them fronted by mainstream celebrities or media brands. The original focus of Smart Girls was young women “changing the world by being themselves.” The channel has since racked up 115 thousand subscribers and over 5 million views. Since its YouTube funded launch, Smart Girls has grown into an online community encompassing several female driven channels, but remains true to its original goal of supporting young women as creators and independent thinkers. We’re excited to see how Legendary will build and expand on this mission.