Woody Allen, Amazon Join Forces On TV Project

Above: Woody Allen creating a TV series for Amazon
Above: Woody Allen creating a TV series for Amazon

If it wasn’t already clear, television is undergoing a serious makeover.

Just a handful of days after Amazon Studios picked up a pair of Golden Globes for Transparent, the company announced a partnership with Woody Allen that will see the veteran funnyman write and direct his first television series for the studio.

There are no real details to discuss about the project at this time – it is still under construction and current known as the Untitled Woody Allen Project. What is known is that Amazon has ordered a full season of 30-minute episodes and if Allen’s response to how the project – “I don’t know how I got into this. I have no ideas and I’m not sure where to begin. My guess is that (Amazon Studio head) Roy Price will regret this.”- came about is any indication, it will feature his usual brand of neurosis.

Allen’s arrival in the world of “built for streaming” content should be a further indication that the network television structure that produced the iconic programs of previous generations is being swept aside in favour of premium cable and direct-to-the-audience ventures.

Of the 10 programs nominated in the two television categories at Sunday’s Golden Globes, just one (The Good Wife) airs on network television, while another (Jane the Virgin) airs on cable network The CW. The Affair, which took home the statue for Best Drama, airs on Showtime, while the remaining nominees are spread between HBO and Netflix. While Downton Abbey is available on PBS both in Canada and the United States, the majority of fans consume the British period drama via a streaming service.

In addition to Allen entering the streaming platform party, Marvel Studios announced last year that it has partnered with Netlfix to create four series plus a mini-series for the streaming site. The first of those projects, Daredevil, is set to premier on April 10, 2015.

While the news of Allen’s arrival continues to signal a change in the television landscape, it could also bring increased scrutiny down upon the 79-year-old New Yorker.

Last year, Allen’s adopted daughter Dylan Farrow renewed charges that she was sexually abused as a child, charges Allen has repeatedly denied. But in the wake of rape accusations against Bill Cosby prompting NBC to pull the plug on a project with the aging comic, the fact that Allen is back in the spotlight and being handed the reins to a new project will surely bring questions about his past, Farrow’s accusations and why Amazon is so willing to work with the polarizing filmmaker to the forefront.

E. Spencer Kyte

E. Spencer Kyte

E. Spencer Kyte is a freelance journalist based in Abbotsford, British Columbia, where he lives with his wife and dog. In addition to his work here, he writes about sports for Complex Canada and covers the UFC for various outlets. His mom also still tells him what to do on a regular basis, even though he’s nearly 40. He tweets from @spencerkyte.

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