PBS’s long-running doc strand ‘Independent Lens’ has partnered with PBS Digital Studios to launch a free subscription-based documentary-driven YouTube channel.
Developed by ITVS, Indie Lens Storycast will see PBS looking to bolster its online foothold by leaning on PBS Digital Studios’ already-established social presence, with more than 12-million subscribers, by using an episodic digital format to reach younger and more diverse audiences on YouTube.
“Storycast follows a different structure than other series that are in our YouTube network – allowing us to serve more audiences with versatile content created by a wide range of amazing producers,” said Brandon Arolfo, senior director of PBS Digital Studios, in a statement.
“Episodic storytelling is in a golden age right now, as indie creators with urgent stories to tell are passionate to get into the form,” noted Karim Ahmad, senior producer of Indie Lens Storycast. “This channel is the organic confluence of all that, and the evolution of Indie Lens’ efforts in helping creators spark conversations with the general public.”
The new digital channel will look to showcase indie filmmakers developing documentary shorts across a range of topics that “spark conversations vital to communities across America.” New episodes for will be delivered every Tuesday and Thursday.
Anchoring Indie Lens Storycast will be Killer Films’ Iron Maidens, which focuses on an all-girls competitive robotics team at Bronx Science High School as they design, build and compete their robot in a national competition. The series is produced by Adrienne Becker and Amber Guyton, and airs Sept. 12.
The series will be followed by the roll out of three additional digital programs: Nicole Opper and Kristan Cassady’s The F Word (Sept. 14), Senain Kheshgi‘s Divas of Karachi (Oct. 24) and Garland McLaurin’s Pops (Oct. 26).
The F Word serves as a comedic docuseries that will capture the lives of a queer Bay Area couple who plan to adopt a child through the foster care system, while Divas of Karachi will trace the upper-class women of Pakistan’s most-populated city as they indulge in leisurely lunches, visit elite social clubs and navigate interpersonal dramas.
Pops, meanwhile, will share three stories of African Americans from a variety of socio-economic backgrounds and regions deeply engaged in the struggle of fatherhood.