HBO Labs, the new media offshoot of the pay cable network, has signed Michael Buckley, creator of the popular What the Buck? show on YouTube, to a development deal. We learned about the new arrangement during a recent trip to HBO Labs.
Buckley declined to be interviewed for this post, but confirmed the following (scant) details: The deal is for both TV and web-related content, and it neither involves What the Buck? nor will end up being a newsy, vlogger-like show similar to the original show. Apparently HBO was more interested in developing original concepts with Buckley that featuring a fictional story arc.
Buckley’s What the Buck? show is an entertainment news show fueled almost entirely by his energetic personality. According to Buckley, the show has more than 239,000 subscribers, with episodes racking up more than 80 million views.
HBO Labs is an arm of the network that’s been tasked with creating content that can run on multiple platforms, including mobile and oldteevee. Two online HBO Labs series already up are Elevator, a comedy that takes place in a — you guessed it — elevator, and Man in the Box, an office comedy. Additionally, the Lab has produced the viral videos The Great Office War and One Semester of Spanish – Love Song.