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WIRE Buzz: Sony buys $250 minority stake in Fortnite's Epic; Woke trailer; Tig N' Seek teaser

By Jacob Oller
Fortnite banner

One of the titans of console gaming is making a big investment in the company behind one of the world’s most-played games. Sony has acquired a minority stake in Fortnite and Unreal Engine maker Epic Games to the tune of $250M, bringing the two companies even closer as Sony’s next-gen PlayStation 5 looms on the horizon.

Polygon reports that the two companies released a joint statement (cozying up further than the PS5 running the new version of the Unreal Engine in early videos) saying that the deal would allow them to “broaden their collaboration” across Sony’s vast technological and gaming infrastructure and Epic’s own valuable assets, like its digital storefront Epic Games Store.

“Epic’s powerful technology in areas such as graphics places them at the forefront of game engine development with Unreal Engine and other innovations,” said Kenichiro Yoshida, president and CEO of Sony Corporation. “There’s no better example of this than the revolutionary entertainment experience, Fortnite. Through our investment, we will explore opportunities for further collaboration with Epic to delight and bring value to consumers and the industry at large, not only in games, but also across the rapidly evolving digital entertainment landscape.”

The latter piece of that quote, the reference to “the rapidly evolving digital entertainment landscape,” could indicate Sony’s interest in Fortnite’s multimedia experiences. The game has hosted concerts, movie trailers like that of Christopher Nolan’s Tenet, and even discussions about social justice. That's a big platform and audience for Sony, and one that likely skews younger than their current demographic.

“Sony and Epic have both built businesses at the intersection of creativity and technology, and we share a vision of real-time 3D social experiences leading to a convergence of gaming, film, and music,” said Tim Sweeney, founder and CEO of Epic. “Together we strive to build an even more open and accessible digital ecosystem for all consumers and content creators alike.”

Next, an upcoming Hulu show that looks to traffic in oddball animation as deeply as progressive social commentary has dropped its first trailer. 

Woke, a Lamorne Morris (New Girl) vehicle based on the life of cartoonist Keith Knight, is blending racial commentary, live-action humor, and talking inanimate objects in the eight-episode first season. Looking at the show’s first footage shows off police brutality, racial profiling, and — in the middle of it all — Keef, who wants to make his art and not be bothered by everything else. That doesn’t stay the case for long.

Take a look:

Woke - Teaser (Official) • A Hulu Original

Co-creators Knight and Marshall Todd, alongside showrunner Jay Dyer, look to address some very real issues in this larger-than-life comedy. What if Pee-wee’s Playhouse said Black Lives Matter?

Woke, which also stars T. Murph and Blake Anderson, hits Hulu on Sept. 9.

Finally, HBO Max is getting another adorable piece of animation—this time from Rick and Morty, China, IL, and Uncle Grandpa alum Myke Chilian. 

Tig N' Seek, a hide-and-seek-esque show where Tiggy (Chilian) and his pet cat Gweeseek work at the Department of Lost and Found. They build gadgets, go on adventures, and otherwise look to solve problems for the residents of Wee-Gee City. The first trailer explains a lot.

Check it out:

So a little weirder even than the upcoming Where’s Waldo? animated series. That’s made clear by the cast, which is full of alt-comedy talent like Rich Fulcher, Jemaine Clement, and Wanda Sykes. 

Fans can find out more when Tig N’ Seek hits HBO Max on July 23.