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Starbucks opens entertainment studio

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Starbucks Corp. is launching a new initiative to produce original entertainment and tell stories.

Teaming up with multimedia production and talent management organization Sugar23, the coffee giant is introducing Starbucks Studios, which will help filmmakers create and produce original film, video and multimedia content. Starbucks says it will partner with a wide range of creative professionals in this effort.

Previous film and video projects Starbucks has been involved with include two seasons of Upstanders, a series that highlighed real people making a difference in their communities. In 2019,  the retailer helped release Hingakawa, telling the story of two women who found common ground through their shared livelihood of coffee and made the choice to choose forgiveness. 

Starbucks was also a producer of 2019’s This is Football, a six-part documentary about the global sport. In addition to getting involved film and video, Starbucks has also explored the metaverse as part of its multimedia promotional activities. 

From late 2022 into 2023, Starbucks piloted Starbucks Odyssey, which provided Starbucks Rewards members and employees in the U.S. the opportunity to earn and purchase digital collectible NFT assets. 

Once logged in, Starbucks Odyssey members could engage in Starbucks Odyssey “journeys,” a series of omnichannel activities, such as playing interactive games or taking challenges. Members were rewarded for completing journeys with a digital collectible “journey stamp.”

"Starbucks Studios advances our mission to nurture the limitless possibilities of human connection," said Christy Cain, VP, brand and partnerships marketing, Starbucks Corp. "We’re honored to have the opportunity to shine a light on the stories and people who inspire us, from young, emerging artists to innovators, changemakers and others who are making a positive impact on the world." 

"Storytelling is deeply ingrained in what Starbucks does, and Starbucks Studios is a natural extension of these efforts," said Michael Sugar, founder and CEO of Sugar23. "Together, we will harness the power of storytelling to foster connections, inspire change, and build a stronger sense of community. We’re excited to work alongside the incredible Starbucks team and invite all our collaborators in Hollywood and beyond to join us in creating premium entertainment."

Founded in 1971 and headquartered in Seattle, Starbucks Coffee Company operates more than 38,000 stores worldwide.

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