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Focus on Gay Content Fuels Revry’s Growth

At its website, the entertainment company Revry explains its name is pronounced with two syllables but that its inspiration comes from the word reverie, pronounced with three syllables that means a fantastic or visionary idea. “We like to think we share the definition with our linguistic inspiration,” the website reads. The Glendale startup specializes in lesbian-gay-bisexual-queer content distributed through its linear channels on such streaming platforms as Pluto TV and Xumo. This month the company announced it would be available on TiVo+, the new streaming service from the San Jose content distributor. While early on Revry was compared to Netflix Inc., Chief Operating Officer Allia Daniels said that unlike that streaming behemoth Revry has a bunch of different programming – short form, full-length television series, feature films and even podcasts and music videos. “We have created an ecosystem for all types of queer content,” Daniels said. Revry was the idea of Chief Executive Damian Pelliccione. He came up with it in the fall of 2015, after the fourth generation AppleTV became available and it enabled for the first time for third-party developers to come up with apps for use in its system. Christopher Rodriguez, chief business officer and Pelliccione’s partner, said that after buying an AppleTV, Pelliccione began searching for LGBQ content. “We were already expecting something like Revry to exist. There wasn’t,” Rodriguez said. “There weren’t any LGBQ apps at all, in fact.” Pelliccione was responsible for bringing together the other three co-founders of Revry. In addition to Rodriguez and Daniels, both attorneys who met at law school, there is also LaShawn McGhee, the chief product officer. The company has nine employees, including the four co-founders. “We are a startup, so we do everything,” Rodriguez explained. “Our titles can be a misnomer since we have to do so much. And we are a relatively small team.” Revry considers itself different from other streaming networks in that its focus is on free, advertising-supported distribution of content. For those who don’t want to watch ads and want to have access to more content, a subscription can be bought instead but that is a secondary part of the business, Rodriguez said. The main focus is on the linear channels that are available on third-party networks. The first one was Pluto TV, which Revry has been on for almost three years. Since it has been programming on that network, it has helped the company achieve its goals a little bit more in terms of wanting to get its content out to the people who need it, Rodriguez said. “This may be LGBQ people who are in the closet or may be afraid to come out,” he added. “We did not want it to be so difficult to access the content, like putting it behind paywalls or requiring credit cards and things like that.” Since joining up with Pluto TV, Revry has partnered with other media companies, including Xumo and Zapping TV, a streaming network that serves Latin America. Then there is the TiVo Corp. deal which came about after Pelliccione met some of its executives at a media tech conference. “One of their heads of business development came to our offices and demoed the product for us, and we talked about where we would fit in their ecosystem,” McGhee said. “Then we started on the deal points and got everything completed.” Revry does not produce the content it airs. Instead, it acquires the series, films and other programming from independent producers. Among its shows are “Sink, Sank, Sunk” starring Laura Linney, a digital short form series; “To Be Me” a series about a young transgender person of color; and “The Queens,” a show that follows some of the biggest drag stars in the world as they go out on tour. “It tells a different perspective from what you see in the mainstream,” Rodriguez said. “It goes into their personal identities and their gender expressions and what goes into making a drag queen.”

Mark Madler
Mark Madler
Mark R. Madler covers aviation & aerospace, manufacturing, technology, automotive & transportation, media & entertainment and the Antelope Valley. He joined the company in February 2006. Madler previously worked as a reporter for the Burbank Leader. Before that, he was a reporter for the City News Bureau of Chicago and several daily newspapers in the suburban Chicago area. He has a bachelor’s of science degree in journalism from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.
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