Amazon Studios prepares to enter the YA genre by ordering 3 pilots


The YA genre has been popular for quite a while now, but so far, Amazon hasn’t offered anything from the genre on its Prime streaming service.

That’s about to change. Deadline reports that Amazon Studios has ordered three YA pilots that it will evaluate for possible production as full series.

First, there’s Panic, based on Lauren Oliver’s best-selling novel of the same name. Oliver will executive produce the show along with Elle Triedman as well as Joe Roth and Jeff Kirschenbaum from Roth Kirschenbaum Films.

Panic‘s story focuses on a rural town that holds a dangerous, illegal contest every year for high school seniors. Only one can win the life-changing monetary prize. But everyone who competes will learn about who they are and who they could be as they take on challenges in which they confront their biggest fears.

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Next, there’s The Wilds, written by Daredevil writer Sarah Streicher and produced by Jamie Tarses and ABC Signature Studios. In the series, a group of girls from diverse backgrounds become unknowing participants in a social experiment when they are stranded on a deserted island. The show will explore what it’s like to grow up female today.

Finally, there’s College, created by the writer and director of the recently released Netflix film 6 Balloons, Marja-Lewis Ryan. Transparent‘s Jill Soloway and Andrea Sperling will executive produce alongside 6 Balloons’  Channing Tatum, Reid Carolin, and Peter Kiernan. The show will delve into college life through the experiences of six roommates.

When Prime first launched, it had public pilot seasons where viewers could vote on the pilots they wanted to be picked up as a series. Recently, though, Amazon has moved away from that model. As a result, Panic, The Wilds, and College will go through a more traditional pilot process where executives at the studio will make the final decision about which ones will eventually become series.

Amazon Studios Head Jennifer Salke has said she’s eager to get into the YA genre for its broad appeal and its relatively limited cost.

Nick Hall, Amazon Studios’ Head of Alternative Scripted Programming, notes,

"[Oliver, Streicher, and Ryan] are creating content for a younger audience that will also transcend cross-generationally, and we look forward to bringing this new perspective to our Prime audience."

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Amazon’s move into the YA space is a good one. The genre is wildly popular, and Netflix has had a great deal of success with its YA-oriented series 13 Reasons Why. Producing YA content will enable Amazon’s Prime streaming service to better compete with Netflix. It will also make Prime more attractive to viewers who are fans of the genre.

Are you looking forward to seeing which YA series Amazon Studios brings to Prime audiences? Let us know in the comments.