Paramount Television announced Monday that it has closed an exclusive overall television deal with Pulitzer Prize winner Brian Yorkey.
“The two-year deal gives Paramount Television exclusive rights to develop, produce and distribute all television projects from Yorkey across broadcast, cable and digital services,” the company announced. “The announcement comes on the heels of a second-season greenlight of Paramount Television’s critically acclaimed series for Netflix, ’13 Reasons Why,’ which was adapted for television by Yorkey.”
“13 Reasons Why,” based on the New York Times bestselling YA book by Jay Asher, has been the focus of intense scrutiny over its handling of the sensitive issue of teen suicide. The show was just picked up for a second season, as we reported separately.
The series is directed by Oscar winner Tom McCarthy, with Yorkey on board as the series showrunner and executive producer alongside McCarthy, Selena Gomez, Joy Gorman, Kristel Laiblin, Mandy Teefey, Steve Golin and Michael Sugar.
“Yorkey joins an incredible slate of talent working with Paramount TV including Tom McCarthy, Anne Rice, Cary Fukunaga, Carlton Cuse, Mark Wahlberg, Jonah Hill, Emma Stone, Selena Gomez, Dustin Lance Black, Gale Anne Hurd, Neil LaBute, Eric Roth and Paul Feig, among others,” the announcement notes.
Said Amy Powell, president of Paramount Television and Digital: “From ‘Next to Normal’ to ‘13 Reasons Why,’ Brian has the innate ability to create both heart-warming and heart-breaking moments that fully immerse the audience and leave an indelible impact. Paramount TV seeks out visionaries like Brian to partner on compelling and original content and we are excited to see his next project.”
Added Yorkey: “I couldn’t be more thrilled or more honored to be making my television home at Paramount. Amy Powell is a visionary leader and a smart, stalwart collaborator, and her team is passionate, resourceful, and incredibly supportive. I’m excited to continue our ‘13 Reasons Why’ journey together and find our future adventures as well.”
Yorkey received the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, as well as the 2009 Tony Award for Best Score, for “Next to Normal.”