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YouTube is reportedly pulling the plug on premium scripted shows

Tyrone Stewart

YouTube Cobra KaiYouTube is moving away from original series and has stopped accepting pitches for scripted shows, ending its ambitions of competing with the likes of Netflix and Amazon Prime on the content creation front. According to Bloomberg, citing sources, the Google-owned video sharing platform will instead focus its investment on music and gaming.

Despite drawing in over $15bn in ad sales last year, YouTube no longer feels it’s wise to invest in the production of TV and film due to its expensive nature – both Netflix and Amazon are investing billions into original content.

The shift from YouTube ties into its plans to make its scripted content available for all of its over 2bn users, without the need to pay for a premium subscription. At the time, there were murmurings that this could lead to YouTube completely scrapping scripted content.

The move also has people questioning what the future holds for Susanne Daniels, who was brought in to lead YouTube’s original productions in 2015. She joined the company from MTV and previously ran television networks Lifetime and the WB (now the CW).

Programming axed by YouTube includes Origin, a sci-fi drama, and comedy Overthinking with Kate & June. Although, the possibility that they are picked up by another service shouldn’t be ruled out.