UNIVERSAL MUSIC GROUP GRANTS EXCLUSIVE ACCESS TO WORLD’S LARGEST MUSIC ARCHIVE FOR NEW DOCUMENTARY SERIES, “DEEP DIVE”, WITH TIME STUDIOS, POLYGRAM ENTERTAINMENT, AND KNOWN ORIGINALS
The first season of the 10-episode series set inside the high-security underground facility, Iron Mountain, uncovers the greatest music stories never told from iconic artists such as Bob Marley, Ella Fitzgerald, Marvin Gaye, The Who and more
NEW YORK, NY, May 4, 2023 – Today, TIME Studios, in partnership with Universal Music Group (UMG) and its film and television division, Polygram Entertainment, and Known Originals, announced Deep Dive, a groundbreaking new behind-the-scenes non-fiction series about history’s largest music archive, housed within UMG’s vaults deep within the renowned Iron Mountain Entertainment Services’ archival facility. Directed by Doug Pray (The Defiant Ones and Lizzo) and produced by Matthew Weaver (Rock of Ages, Jiro Dreams of Sushi), this series brings history to life as it unearths for the first time previously untold stories from original recordings, master tapes, never-before-seen photo negatives, filmed performances, album art and music videos that had long been only rumored to exist.
While a 2008 fire at Universal Studios backlot led to wild media speculation and unfounded rumors about what might have been lost, UMG initiated a massive, multi-year effort to inventory the vast collection of musical recordings and artifacts. Through awe-inspiring and emotional storytelling, Deep Dive not only celebrates the treasures discovered within Iron Mountain and UMG’s vaults around the world, but also spotlights the incredible team of music archivists, curators and producers who have dedicated their careers to preserving, protecting and caring for these rare items.
Whether through a lyric, a comment at the end of a taped recording, an engineer’s invention, a late-night inspiration or something similar, the series uncovers the archival proof of the moment an artist pivoted; when a hit was born, an emotional reality was faced, or a loss was recognized. What really happened to make that song become something the world knows and loves.
Featuring stories around a legendary artist such as Bob Marley, Ella Fitzgerald, Marvin Gaye and The Who in each episode, the series’ insatiably curious host and experts lead viewers on a musical journey exploring intimate stories and unexpected mysteries connected to the biggest untapped treasure trove of music ever known. Each episode is revealing for the artist, host and audience alike.
“Being able to unveil incredible findings through unfiltered and insightful storytelling is what we strive for with each and every TIME Studios project,” said Ian Orefice, President & COO of TIME and TIME Studios. “Deep Dive does just that and we are confident that both music fans and history lovers alike will revel in the mysteries uncovered in each episode.”
“We are privileged to have the greatest collection of musical recordings, videos and artwork in the world–millions of assets in total–dating back to 1897 and the founding of the world’s first record label. Deep Dive celebrates the iconic artists, the untold stories and the passionate people who devote their lives to preserving and finding new audiences for those treasures,” said David Blackman, Head of Film and Television Development and Production, UMG.
“There are thousands of discoveries to be made within UMG’s vault in Iron Mountain. The list of artists alone is staggering. We’re thrilled to be teaming up with two of Known’s closest partners, UMG and TIME Studios as we unearth treasures from the most iconic musical artists of our time and share them with passionate fandoms worldwide,” said Brad Roth, President Known Originals.
Executive producers on the project include TIME Studios’ Ian Orefice, Lynne Benioff, and Jeff Smith; Known Originals’ Brad Roth and Ross Martin; UMG’s Will Tanous, Michele Anthony, and Bruce Resnikoff and Polygram Entertainment’s David Blackman.
As TIME’s fastest growing business, TIME Studios continues to raise the bar as the Emmy Award®-winning film and television division for the legacy media company through the development of numerous projects that have been sold to streaming services and distributors including Netflix, Amazon, Paramount+, HBO, Showtime, Nickelodeon, ABC and CNN Films. Recent projects include docuseries The Turning Point from Trevor Noah’s Day Zero Productions (2022), and an upcoming scripted television series based on the history of the New York culinary and cultural icon, Russ & Daughters.
About TIME Studios
From one of the most globally iconic brands, TIME Studios is an Emmy Award®-winning television, film and immersive studio focusing on the development, production and distribution of truth-based premium unscripted and scripted storytelling that moves the world. With technical innovation and a brand defining visual language that dates back 99 years, TIME Studios aims to impact communities and the world at large with ideas that forge true progress. Combining the industry’s leading creators with TIME, one of the most trusted brands that reaches an audience of over 100 million people globally, TIME Studios is uniquely positioned to bring massive audiences to the world’s most impactful stories. Recent projects include: Jeen-Yuhs (Netflix), Countdown: Inspiration4 Mission to Space (Netflix), Katrina Babies (HBO), Black Gold (Paramount+), Big Vape (Netflix), John Lewis: Good Trouble (CNN Films), Amazing Grace (Neon), Right to Offend (A&E), Ricky Powell: The Individualist (Showtime), Mass Effect: The Story of YouTube, Kid of the Year (Nickelodeon/CBS), TIME 100 (ABC) and the first scripted project for TIME Studios, Women of the Year (Amazon).
About Universal Music Group
At Universal Music Group, we exist to shape culture through the power of artistry. UMG is the world leader in music-based entertainment, with a broad array of businesses engaged in recorded music, music publishing, merchandising and audiovisual content. Featuring the most comprehensive catalogue of recordings and songs across every musical genre, UMG identifies and develops artists and produces and distributes the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful music in the world. Committed to artistry, innovation and entrepreneurship, UMG fosters the development of services, platforms, and business models in order to broaden artistic and commercial opportunities for our artists and create new experiences for fans. For more information, visit www.universalmusic.com.
About Known Originals
Known Originals, a division of the marketing agency Known, boasts a successful track record of original programming and culture-defining content. Led by longtime entertainment and advertising executive and Known co-founder Brad Roth, Known Originals has produced an impressive output of documentaries, feature films, and original series, including the recently announced Amazon Prime feature documentary film about the history of the McDonald’s All American Games currently in production. Other Known Originals credits include Countdown: Inspiration 4 Mission to Space, a five-part docuseries for Netflix; the Emmy-nominated Jeen Yuhs: A Kanye Trilogyfor Netflix; season one of One Burning Question, Hulu’s first-ever after-show, which was paired with its hit series “The Handmaid’s Tale”; and Future Legends of Advertising, a podcast series with iHeartMedia, which debuted in 2022 and has been greenlit for season two. Known Originals tells bigger stories that don’t just reflect culture—they create it.
ABOUT POLYGRAM ENTERTAINMENT
Polygram Entertainment is the film and television arm of Universal Music Group, the world leader in music-based entertainment. Built on the foundation of the world’s most comprehensive and storied music catalog, Polygram Entertainment develops, produces, and finances music-driven content that inspires and engages fans of all ages around the world. From premium documentaries to original scripted features and scripted and unscripted television, Polygram Entertainment productions explore the ways in which music shapes culture, informs our worldview, and brings us closer together. Recent award-winning projects include NAACP Image and Critics Choice Documentary awards-nominated Louis Armstrong’s Black & Blues from director Sacha Jenkins; Todd Haynes’ The Velvet Underground (Critics Choice Documentary and International Documentary Association awards nominations); Emmy Award-nominated The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart from director Frank Marshall; Emmy Award-nominated Beastie Boys Story from director Spike Jonze; Critics Choice Documentary Award winner The Go-Go’sfrom Allison Ellwood; Pavarotti from director Ron Howard; Emmy Award-winning The Apollo, from director Roger Ross Williams; the Emmy Award-winning series “Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist” and the subsequent telefilm “Zoey’s Extraordinary Christmas.” Upcoming projects include Love to Love You, Donna Summer, a feature documentary about Donna Summer directed by Roger Ross Williams and Brooklyn Sudano; Band on the Run, Morgan Neville’s feature documentary about post-Beatles Paul McCartney; the docuseries James Brown: Say It Loud; scripted features about KISS and The Osbournes; a docuseries about the legendary Memphis-based record label STAX; and a new series based on the life of Frank Sinatra.