Feb 7, 2023
‘Panic’ Creator & Author Lauren Oliver Launches Media Studio StoryGiants, Unveils Upcoming Slate
Lauren Oliver — the bestselling YA author, screenwriter and producer known for titles like Panic and Before I Fall — has today announced the launch of her new media company, StoryGiants, also naming projects currently on its slate.
StoryGiants is a decentralized company with employees and partners in L.A., NY, Palo Alto, Austin, Dubai and France, which will look to create powerful and compelling stories across a variety of mediums, leveraging both technological and structural innovation to improve production efficiency and grow the value of great IP faster.
The company is building at launch upon its own library of IP, the goal being to introduce universes of content with myriad expressions of media and revenue opportunities. By anchoring content creation into proprietary real-time animation and VFX technology, StoryGiants will be able to produce not only animated and live-action series, but also feature films, digital media, and published works.
The company will execute at every stage of story creation, from development to production to growth into market, assigning purpose-built teams of producers, writers, publishing executives, designers, engineers, digital creators and animators specialized to each endeavor. (Information on the team can be found here.)
StoryGiants follows more than a decade of work for Oliver at the company Glasstown Entertainment, founded with Lexa Hillyer. That banner also afforded her an opportunity to work with a diverse assortment of artists, writers and creators, with Oliver ultimately revamping its book model and expanding through it into both TV and visual media. StoryGiants consolidated its component business interests including Glasstown Entertainment in December of last year, unifying its projects across animation, film, television and published works under one parent company.
The technology division of StoryGiants will be led by Board Member, Soulaiman Itani, a pioneering senior artificial intelligence software engineer, who founded AR and immersive computing leader Atheer in 2011. Projects in StoryGiants’ pipeline at various stages include:
GOOMBAY KIDS – An award-winning, initiative-driven, Bahamian edutainment series, Goombay Kids, created by Stephanie Nihon, is StoryGiants’ anchor children’s property and provides the first successful commercial application of StoryGiants’ VFX production technologies. It is also the first IP partnership to ratify the studio’s innovative entity structure and approach to content creation and media financing. Goombay Kids Phase 1 will be a hybrid live-action/animated children’s educational series, providing the basis for an expanded universe of nonfiction and fiction books as well as animated short series. Goombay Kids is executive produced by Stephanie Nihon, Rowena Poitier-Sutherland, and Lauren Oliver, in association with Progeny Ventures’ Colin Miles Campbell, COO of Goombay Kids media.
MAGICK SHOW + MAGICK SHOW BOOK IMPRINT – The StoryGiants team completed principal photography in December 2022 for Magick Show, a first foray into niche docuseries — in this case, focusing on the occult and modern witchcraft. With efficient upfront development and production costs and capital requirements, the company anticipates strong interest from distributors or acquirors for Magick Show given the sharp demand for this kind of content amongst an engaged and dedicated following and fanbase. Alongside show creator Richard Metzger, StoryGiants will reissue classic and re-illustrated occult works, grimoires, and tarot cards through a related Magick Show Publishing effort, with an ancillary podcast currently in development to be launched under the same entity aegis.
FRANK APE – StoryGiants has inked a multiformat media partnership with SinesArt to build a world around the New York City character, Frank Ape, developed and owned by local street artist Brandon Sines. The studio is currently syndicating capital for phase one development and production. Phase 1 will be a high-concept graphic anthology and shortform animated digital content, with a linked NYC-based AR experience to follow.
ECSTASY CLUB – Based on the novel and beloved cult classic of the same name by media and technology futurist Douglas Rushkoff, Ecstasy Club is Black Mirror-meets-Euphoria by way of Richard Linklater. StoryGiants is attached to produce, and to simultaneously develop an immersive Web-3 gaming experience tied to Rushkoff’s work.
Oliver is perhaps best known for creating, writing, exec producing and serving as showrunner on Panic — the Prime Video series, based on her own 2014 novel. She previously exec produced a film adaptation of her novel Before I Fall, directed by Ry Russo-Young and starring Zoey Deutch, which was released by Open Road in 2017. Other works from the author include the Delirium trilogy, as well as such novels as Vanishing Girls and Broken Things.
Oliver and StoryGiants are represented by UTA, Sugar 23 and Inkwell Management.