Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Amazon’s Pilot Season Ends With Five Pickups

amazon annebotsAmazon has finished the first part of its online video experiment. The results: It’s going to turn five of the 14 TV pilots it showed off last month into full-blown series.

We already knew that Amazon, using input from online viewers, was going to pick up “Alpha House,” a Washington satire starring John Goodman, and “Betas,” a Silicon Valley sitcom.

And you can add three kids’ shows to that list: Annebots, Creative Galaxy and Tumbleaf.

What’s worth noting is that by letting nine other shows fall by the wayside, Amazon is passing on some stuff that certainly sounded good on paper. Like “Zombieland,” a spin-off of the 2009 movie, and “Onion News Empire,” a “Newsroom” parody from the Onion.

Amazon says some of the shows (presumably the live-action comedies) will start running this year, with the rest in 2014. You can see all five of its pickups here, and if you poke around the site you can find the ones it passed on, as well.

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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald