Levin Tackles New Content Venture

After almost two years off the television radar, Jordan Levin, former CEO of The WB, is back in business with Generate, a new development and |talent-management firm.

The company will create content aimed at younger audiences on various platforms, including television, broadband and mobile devices. Formed by Levin as a partnership with production veterans Pete Aronson and Mike Karz and talent managers Dave Rath and Kara Welker, the company has already inked a deal with MTV Networks to develop content for the company’s myriad distribution platforms.

Generate’s goal is to be a "media-neutral company" that lets producers start with a concept, develop it and then decide on the best distribution platform, says Levin, who has consulted with new-media and broadband firms.

"The power of the idea is becoming paramount," he says. "What you supply matters more than how you supply it."

Generate will develop content exclusively for MTV’s mobile, broadband and basic-cable platforms and has to give MTV a first look at television projects. If MTV takes a pass, the firm can take the project to broadcast or pay TV but not to another basic-cable network. Considering the breadth of cable properties under the MTV Networks umbrella, Levin says, Generate should be able to hit "the audience we want to reach," which is young adults and family households.

"The chokehold used to be distribution," he says. "I think the chokehold’s back on talent."