Streaming service Sundance Now is making its foray into scripted original programming with a straight-to-series pickup of The Chances, a dramedy starring deaf actors Shoshannah Stern and Josh Feldman.
The series, which hails from Turner-owned Super Deluxe, tells the story of best friends Kate (Stern) and Michael (Feldman) as they deal with relationship changes - she is newly engaged, he is adjusting to a breakup with his boyfriend - and face real-life challenges. The six-episode first season will debut exclusively on Sundance Now.
"With our show, we want to introduce the world to deaf characters written by deaf people, who lead intersectional lives that are complicated, funny, and sometimes heartbreaking, buy never defined solely by their being deaf," the duo said in a joint statement. "We're beyond thrilled to partner with Super Deluxe, Killer Films and Sundance Now to share our story with the world."
Stern, who has appeared on Lie to Me and Supernatural, and Feldman created The Chances together and wrote the episodes. It debuted at the Sundance Film Festival in January in the shortform episodic showcase. It was there that Sundance Now discovered the series. "When we first saw the shorts at the Sundance Film Festival, we instantly fell in love with the chemistry between Shoshannah and Josh," said Owen Shiflett, vp development at Sundance Now. "The show strikes a beautiful balance of being thoughtful, endearing and funny - all at once. Sundance Now's independent spirit and dedication to championing new voices make it the perfect home for The Chances."
Sundance Now, which is backed by AMC Networks, has operated as a subscription streaming service since 2012. A $7 monthly membership fee includes access to independent films and documentaries and some TV shows. The Chances is its first scripted original series.
It also marks one of the first series pickup for Super Deluxe, which launched as an independent division of Turner in late 2015 to make online programming, TV series, documentaries, live experiences and tech products. Super Deluxe has also sold two seasons of the series Magic Funhouse to Fullscreen.
"Super Deluxe was founded to foster and amplify diverse auteurs and voices," said Super Deluxe president Wolfgang Hammer. "We invest in artists who have something unique to say about the world, and we wholeheartedly believe that taking creative risks together leads to a meaningful payoff."
The Chances is executive produced by Killer Films.