Sometimes the best stories aren’t on TV, but rather about TV. In her interview with Deadline, Jennifer Salke, new head of Amazon Studios, talked about just how they were able to pick up the cancelled Syfy series The Expanse, what types of pressure they were under to make the move, and how Jeff Bezos ended up announcing it after the cast were on a panel.
There were airplanes circling us, I was having cakes delivered, there was a whole thing happening. And then really smart people, whose opinions I really value creatively, started reaching out to me, saying, “have you seen this show, The Expanse, it’s actually great”. I hadn’t so I spent some time, I watched the show and I was like, this show is actually really well done, why is nobody watching it? At the same time, Jeff Bezos was getting emails from everyone from George R.R. Martin to every captain of industry, like the founder of Craigslist, and they were all writing, saying, there’s this show, it’s so great, you have to see it, you have to buy it or save it.
We were trying to explore the deal, and we could make the U.S. deal pretty easily because they were kind of just standing outside, holding it out to us. We had it pretty much done when (Bezos) emailed saying, “I’m at an event, a space seminar, I’m looking at the cast of The Expanse here, I would like to get up there and order the show. Can I, can I?” I was like, let me check with business affairs, and then replied, you can do it, go for it. It was so fun to watch it on Twitter Live; I could see him do it in real time.
It’s great the show was picked up. I am also a fan, but I really like how excited Jeff Bezos was to do it at the panel.