Facebook in talks to produce original TV-quality shows

In May, reports suggested the social media giant was planning to roll out a couple dozen shows at launch, a mixture of high-end, pricier shows and shorter, lower-budget blasts of video content. It sounds like there are some thoroughly innovative ideas being kicked around, too-like a virtual-reality based dating show.

Last week, Bloomberg reported that the priciest of Facebook's top-flight shows, while not meant to directly compete with other top-flight prestige paid TV services like HBO and Netflix, would boast budgets of up to $200,000 per episode.

Facebook is talking to Hollywood studios and agencies about producing TV-quality shows, with an eye toward launching original programming on its platform by late summer, the Wall Street Journal reports, citing people familiar with the matter. According to a report from Business Insider in May, the company aims to offer a wide range of video content, including both scripted and unscripted shows, premium programming, and a selection of cheaper productions, in addition to live sports.

In terms of content, the company has apparently said it wants to avoid a number of genres and topics, including "shows about children and young teens as well as political dramas, news and shows with nudity and rough language".

One of Facebook's first original shows will be Last State Standing, which sees one contestant from each of the 50 U.S. states competing together in games for US$500,000 in prize money. For a frame of reference, the final day of summer in 2017 is Friday, Sept. 22.

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