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Amazon hires for series production

Amazon is recruiting creative executives to help develop original comedy and kids programming through its US production arm.

The online retailer’s jobs site says the company is looking to develop half-hour kids and comedy series for “online and traditional distribution.”

The executives will work with writers to develop series ideas and assess proposals before hiring staff and cast to produce cost-efficient pilots. They will also supervise greenlit series.

The shows will be made by California-based movie and series outfit People’s Production Company, which is owned by Amazon.

Ideas will be primarily sourced through Amazon Studios, the creative development arm the firm launched in November 2010, first signalling its efforts to move into content production.

Three positions are up for grabs: a creative exec for kids, a creative exec for comedy, plus a production assistant.

The new hires will report to the studio’s VP of series development, a post that Amazon recruited for last month. The successful candidate has yet to be announced.

Amazon Studios was created to develop full-length movies by investing in scripts and test movies. It was initially set up through a first-look deal with Warner Bros.

In its first year in operation, Amazon said its studio invested US$2.2m in test movies and paid US$580,000 to scriptwriters.

Amazon’s original programming push, first reported by GigaOm, comes as online rivals such as Hulu and Netflix each step up their original series production efforts, with the latter launching its Norwegian-based drama-comedy series Lilyhammer earlier this month.

Amazon currently offers unlimited video-on-demand to Amazon Prime subscribers in the US and is rumoured to be planning a separate, stand-alone VoD service for non-Prime members.

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