The debut of the iPad came at an opportune time for Avnet and García, co-founders of YouTube’s top channel for scripted dramas. In 2010, the two men—both industry veterans—started kicking around the idea of producing short, high-quality pieces for the Web that appealed to a female audience. However, at the time, says García, “it was still sort of a question: Will people watch anything on the Internet that’s not just a short little amusing lark?” Then the iPad debuted and answered that question with a resounding “Shh! I’m watching ‘Modern Family’!”
Encouraged by the new trend in viewing habits, Avnet and García set to work. Now approaching the one-year anniversary of its launch, WIGS hosts 13 Web series as well as standalone short films, which have collectively garnered more than 22 million views. WIGS series stars include Catherine O’Hara, Julia Stiles, and America Ferrera.
If the episodes weren’t so short, you could be forgiven for thinking you were watching a drama on premium cable. “We are working with a lot of very talented actors,” says Avnet. “The work would have to be good if they bought into what we were asking them to do.” Adds García, “We wanted to treat the platform with respect.”