Amazon-owned MGM makes TV show from Ring camera footage

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Comedian Wanda Sykes’ latest endeavor is to turn your smart home network video into a TV show.


The Primetime Emmy winner and star of Netflix’s “The Upshaws” will host a show called “Ring Nation.” Produced by Big Fish Entertainment and Amazon-owned MGM and Ring, it will use footage from people’s doorbells and smart home cameras across the country.

Of course, this seems like a creepy twist on hidden camera shows like “You’ve Been Framed!” or “Punk’d” that have captivated audiences for decades – But it’s also a case of corporate synergy. Amazon forked $1 billion to buy Ring in 2018 and paid nearly $8.5 billion this March to buy the classic MGM studio. Big Bezos therefore combines the two, hoping that the camera technology responsible for certain online viral moments (people stopping package thefts, marriage proposals, military meetings or filmed pranks) can translate this interest into a TV show.

Engadget recently called the upcoming show “what happens when ‘America’s Funniest Home Videos’ meets ‘Black Mirror'”, which is a pretty apt description.

“Ring Nation” will be executive produced by Ring CEO Jamie Siminoff. He will likely continue to keep a tight grip on the company’s portrayal on the show, especially given the recent backlash over Ring’s relationship with law enforcement and his tendency to share user images with the cops without obtaining a court order.

Ring defended the practice and told dot.LA in June that “the law allows companies like Ring to provide information to government entities if the company believes that an emergency involving danger of death or serious physical injury to anyone, such as kidnapping or attempted murder, requires disclosure without delay…Ring faithfully applies this legal standard.

Ring did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Siminoff’s early Hollywood credit — or how it will handle getting users’ doorbell footage, including possibly compensating people for using it. their camera footage. Deadline reported the news for the first timenoting that the show “will feature viral videos people are sharing from their video doorbells and smart home cameras.”

In addition to Siminoff, “Ring Nation” executive producers include Mark Burnett, Barry Poznick, Karni Baghdikian, Dan Cesareo, Lucilla D’Agostino, Bret Calvert and Jordana Starr.

“Wanda Sykes is one of the biggest names in comedy and is beloved by fans around the world. We’re thrilled she’s signed on to host this fun new take on a tried-and-true format,” Barry told Deadline Thursday. Poznick, president of alternative television and Orion TV at MGM.

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