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TCA 2018: Suzanne Daniels Calls YouTube Premium Rebrand a Better Fit for Service

Beverly Hills, Calif. -- The recent rebranding of the YouTube Premium service is more representative of the streaming service’s original scripted and unscripted content than the service's former YouTube Red moniker, YouTube’s global head of original content Susanne Daniels said during the service’s Television Critics Association summer press tour executive session Friday.

“We valiantly tried [with YouTube Red], but at a certain point we realized that it didn’t really speak to what the service was to viewers,” Daniels told Tv critics. “It really wasn’t resonating with viewers so we decided to rebrand. YouTube Premium so far seems to be working for us.”

Daniels said since the $12 per month service launched four year ago its original content has been viewed more than 600 million times. She added that the service will feature long-form content that will run at least 20 minutes long to reflect the premium value of the service.

Sci-fi series 'Origin' is one of several new original shows set to debut on YouTube Premium this fall. 

Sci-fi series 'Origin' is one of several new original shows set to debut on YouTube Premium this fall. 

‘The feedback [from viewers] was that ‘we get short-form all day on YouTube -- if we’re going to subscribe to YouTube Premium we want longer episodes,’” she said. “We’re responding to fans.”

YouTube also announced during the session several new series and specials, including sci fi-themed Origin (launching this fall); unscripted show Will Smith: The Jump (debuting Sept. 25); The Lou Pearlman Project and an untitled Adam Pally/Sam Richardson comedy (both launching in 2019).

The service will also develop original series with Robert Downey Jr., (Untitled A.I. series) and Jordan Peele (Weird City), as well as scripted series On Becoming A God In Central Florida.

YouTube also renewed existing shows Step Up: High Water, Cobra Kai, Ryan Hansen Solves Crimes on Television, Kevin Hart: What The Fit, Mind Field and Foursome.

R. Thomas Umstead
R. Thomas Umstead

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.