YouTube Originals Announces New & Returning Programs For Fall/Winter 2021

Post by: Rick Ellis 23 September, 2021

Susanne Daniels, YouTube’s Global Head of Original Content, announced on the service's upcoming slate of original programming set to premiere during the rest of 2021. She made the announcement at Thursday’s Television Critics Association’s (TCA) 2021 Summer Press Tour session.

"The new slate reaffirms the global platform's pledge to provide viewers across the globe with content that taps into today’s most important timely conversations and zeitgeist moments - all while spotlighting inspiring YouTube creators, music artists, and public figures who share authentic stories centered on music, personalities, learning and families," said Daniels.

Highlights of the lineup include a new feature length documentary Tom Petty, Somewhere You Feel Free: The Making of Wildflowers offering a personal look into making his most celebrated album WildflowersTab Time a new preschool series with Tabitha Brown focused on themes such as gratitude, mindfulness, service, community and culture; Supreme Models showing the importance of Black models, fashion designers, and editors, and their impact on fashion and society; two additional sustainability projects, Signals, a live-action and animation hybrid that tells the abridged story of the planet's relationship with plastics, and Climate Games, a two-part special that features content creators and elite athletes delivering key climate messages with spectacular challenges; Copy That! a competition comedy series where four star YouTube creators compete against each other outside of their comfort zones; and The Creator Games 3 Presented By MrBeast where MrBeast returns for the third installment of his record-breaking event featuring YouTube creators competing in a set of challenges to win $500,000. 

Here is the rundown of the new programming announced on Thursday:

BookTube Jr. - Premieres September 24 th
Building on the success of BookTube, where viewers saw the world’s biggest authors (President Obama, Michelle Obama, Malcolm Gladwell, Margaret Atwood) come together to discuss their books, BookTube Jr. will feature the biggest children’s book authors including Max Greenfield, Joanna Ho, Dr. Ibram x. Kendi, Jon Klassen, Avery Monsen, Ibtihaj Muhammad, Todd Parr and Marcus Smith II, who will talk about their books and their process. The authors will hear kids' questions about their books and aim to inspire the younger generation to continue their exploration of the author off screen. “BookTube Jr.” will launch on YouTube Originals for Kids and Family and the YouTube Kids app.

I Promise - Premieres September 28th
This feature-length documentary tells the story of LeBron James’ efforts to close the achievement gap in his hometown of Akron, Ohio through the eyes of the inspiring students who are resetting expectations of their futures. The film explores the day-to-day trials, triumphs, and life-changing impact of the school staff, students and families working together in a unique, family-first educational environment that embraces the trauma and challenges many face in Akron. The documentary is directed by award-winning filmmaker, Marc Levin who will also serve as executive producer alongside Jamal Henderson, Philip Byron, Nicholas Lopez, Daniel B. Levin, Catherine Cyr, and Josh Gold. LeBron James and Maverick Carter will serve as executive producers on the documentary with their empowerment-led media conglomerate The SpringHill Company.

Noted: Alicia Keys The Untold Stories - Premieres September 30th
While ramping up to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Songs in A Minor and heading into the studio to record her 8th and most personal record to date, GRAMMY Award-winning singer-songwriter, producer, and author Alicia Keys invites her fans to peer into her world like never before. In partnership with Westbrook Media, Keys serves up “Noted,” a four-part, intimate performance docuseries comprised of breathtaking visual displays of introspection. Informed by life defining memories and meaningful conversations with loved ones, Alicia will bring you into a whole new experience combining the documentary and performance worlds in a way you’ve never quite before seen. Noted: Alicia Keys The Untold Stories is produced by Alicia Keys and directed by TT The Artist. The series is produced by Jason Bergh and Westbrook Media's Lukas Kaiser, Brad Haugen and Jae Trevits.

The Outsiders?- Premieres October 4th
This new six-part docuseries from visionary filmmaker and photographer Simon Frederick brings to life the Black experience through stories and personal anecdotes of a seminal cast of young Black actors, musicians, creators, artists, and personalities that are shaping popular culture as we know it. The Outsiders? challenges notions that anti-Black sentiment is a national or regional issue, weaving the cast’s experiences into a cohesive set of themes that underscore the universal nature of what it means to be Black around the world. The cast’s revealing truths and untold stories are tragic, thought-provoking, and inspiring. From the YouTube Black Voices fund, The Outsiders? premieres globally on October 4th

Onyx Family Dinner - Premieres October 20th
This new series gathers the multi-generational family from the well known Onyx Family YouTube channel, for plenty of fun and open conversations about life and what’s going on in the world over dinner. Weekly dinner guests broaden the conversation with different perspectives, thought provoking stories, subject matter expertise and valuable insights. Onyx Family Dinner is Produced by in association with Shine Global and executive produced by Keith Brown, Albie Hecht, the Onyx Family and Chris M.Williams.

Dear Earth - Premieres October 23rd
In the lead up to the UN’s Climate Change Conference (COP 26), Dear Earth kicks off a series of sustainability-themed YouTube Originals programming with a multi-hour, global celebration of the planet. Featuring inspirational keynote addresses, musical performances, special appearances and comedic shorts “Dear Earth” will address sustainability challenges the world faces and offer solutions that can be adopted to inspire change. A wide-range of global leaders, celebrities, musicians, and creators will join the special event to help educate, inspire and motivate audiences to create a better, healthier, fairer existence for the planet we inhabit. “Dear Earth” is produced by Done + Dusted, Strong Brew and Silverback Films.

Climate Games - Premieres October 23rd
Climate Games follows content creators and elite athletes over two special episodes as they undertake spectacular challenges designed to deliver a key climate message. Skier JT Holmes and creator Psychics Girl team up to measure how quickly the ice is melting on the snowy mountains of British Columbia, and world champion BMX rider Danny Mcaskill is given free reign at a renewable energy factory where he attempts a series of tricks designed to demonstrate the percentage of the world's energy that currently comes from renewable sources. Climate Games is a Studio Silverback Production with Executive Producers Colin Butfield & Jonnie Hughes, and series producer Ben Duncan. 

Signals - Premieres October 28th
Signals is the abridged story of our relationship with plastic - from the origins and lifecycle of a plastic bottle to the myths of recycling. A live-action and animation mash-up, told through a series of chapters, “Signals” is a call to action for the internet age. Produced by artists and activists from around the world (Japan, Hawaii and the United States, South Africa, Indonesia, Netherlands, Germany, and more), each chapter also takes on a different format - from stop-motion animation to photorealistic CG to live-action comedy. “Signals” stars Bretman Rock as a plastic bottle and is created by Mackenzie Sheppard (Cannes Young Director Award winner) and Kaz Firpo (Eternals), who co-produced with Airi Yamawaki.

Copy That! - Premieres November 8th
In this five-part competition comedy series, four star YouTube creators each with a different, incredible skill, will step out of their comfort zones and attempt to copy their fellow creators’ area of expertise. Sofie Dossi (6.21M subscribers), Lisette aka Luhhsetty (3.15M subscribers), Rosanna Pansino (13M subscribers) and Preston (17.9M subscribers) will demo their gaming, cooking, dancing, or beauty and makeup mastery in a blur of action and charisma… and then, it is up to the other star creators to COPY THAT! and nail their own version. Whether it be a delectable crêpe cake, make-up demos, or jaw dropping dance routines… the other star creators will be in over their heads trying to create their own magic in a space they know little about. Copy That! is produced by Sony Pictures Television and executive produced by Charles Wachter.

Tom Petty, Somewhere You Feel Free: The Making of Wildflowers - Premieres Later This Year 
Tom Petty, Somewhere You Feel Free offers a unique take on the Petty legacy, diving deep into a condensed period of creativity and freedom for the legendary rock star. Capturing the period of 1993-1995, during which he created his seminal and most emotionally raw album Wildflowers, the unvarnished look at Petty features never-before-seen footage drawn from a newly discovered archive of 16mm film as well as new interviews with album co-producers Rick Rubin and Heartbreaker Mike Campbell, along with original Heartbreaker Benmont Tench. Director Mary Wharton illuminates an artist at the height of his powers, providing an intimate and emotional look at an enigmatic icon with archival footage of Petty and his band in the recording studio, behind-the-scenes on tour, and at home with his family, providing a view of Tom Petty as he has never been seen before. The film first debuted in March as an Official SXSW 2021 Selection, winning the festival’s Audience Award, and will see its theatrical release on October 20 (Tom’s birthday) for a one-night global celebration via Trafalgar Releasing, with encore screenings in select cinemas on October 21. Tom Petty, Somewhere You Feel Free: The Making of Wildflowers is produced by Peter Afterman with executive producers Dan Braun, Mary Wharton and Adria Petty and presented by Inaudible Films, Warner Music Entertainment (Warner Music Group’s TV and Film division), and Warner Records.

Tab Time - Premieres Later This Year
Tab Time is a preschool series starring Tabitha Brown, an actress and vegan foodie who has become one of the most visible social media personalities today. Tabitha or “Ms. Tab” as the kids call her, taps into her natural capabilities as a cook, story teller, mom and motivational leader, to teach children how to live their best life. Through themes such as gratitude, mindfulness, service, community, and culture, Tabitha keeps topics engaging and dynamic. “Tab Time” fosters a fun and inviting environment where kids are encouraged to realize their own abilities and potential. The series is produced by Kids at Play and Scale Productions, and is directed by Henry Saine with Lorien McKenna as showrunner. Tab Time will launch on the Tabitha Brown YouTube channel and the YouTube Kids app.

Supreme Models - Premieres Fall 2022
Inspired by Marcellus Reynolds’s revelatory book Supreme Models: Iconic Black Women Who Revolutionized Fashion, this six-part limited series from R.J. Cutler’s This Machine and supermodel Iman, will pay tribute to the Black women who broke down barriers and transformed the fashion and beauty industries. Executive Produced by Cutler (The September Issue), Iman, Jane Cha Cutler (Project Runway), Douglas Keeve (Unzipped), Rolake Bamgbose (The Day Sports Stood Still), and Donny Jackson (United Shades of America), the series will feature personal stories from industry legends who will illuminate and celebrate the fight for representation for models and the astounding creativity and vision of some of the most celebrated Black designers, fashion editors, and entrepreneurs of the last several decades. In its look back to critical moments of impact in the past, the new series will expose how these beautiful trailblazers challenged and overcame multiple systems of racial oppression and sexism. This dramatic, emotional and visually stunning series is an insider glimpse at how, with the consummate grace and power of a strut down the runway, these superstars became household names and idols for a new generation of Black women. Supreme Models will be executive produced for This Machine (an Industrial Media Company) by Trevor Smith.

Last modified on Thursday, 23 September 2021 14:18