It’s story time for ‘Bluey’ on YouTube, where the BBC is launching a celebrity-driven series

By 02/12/2024
It’s story time for ‘Bluey’ on YouTube, where the BBC is launching a celebrity-driven series

Australia’s favorite family of Blue Heeler dogs is expanding its YouTube presence. BBC Studios‘ social media division has launched Bluey Book Reads, an original series that pairs Bluey stories with celebrity narrators.

In each episode of Bluey Book Reads, a special guest reads from one of the dozens of Bluey books that follow the domestic life of the titular seven-year-old dog and her family of four. Bluey has run for three seasons on TV and streaming since its 2018 premiere, but for the Book Reads series, global distributor BBC Studios is taking the Heelers to their official YouTube channel. That’s where a teaser for the new show — and the first episode — landed on February 12.

BBC Studios’ Kids & Family unit developed Book Reads alongside Bluey producer Ludo Studio. The books featured in the series have all been published by Penguin Random House, a BBC Studios licensee. The celebrities who will read to Bluey‘s subscribers are an impressive group, ranging from TV personalities like Bindi Irwin and Tom Daley to actors like Eva Mendes and Jenna Fischer. For the first episode, Bluey returned to its Australian roots by enlisting sisters Kylie and Dannii Minogue to read a story called Mini Bluey.

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The quality of children’s programming on social media has caught the attention of American lawmakers, who are urging Big Tech firms to adopt more safety measures and protect their youngest users. Bluey is a potential antidote to the dearth of high-quality children’s programming, since the franchise has been praised for its realism, constructive messaging, and mature tone.

“It is a true privilege to work with the joyous brand that is Bluey,” said BBC Studios SVP of Digital Jasmine Dawson. “She has captured hearts of all ages across the globe and in extending her story we have put that audience at the heart of everything. I am extremely proud of this original commission and it is a true ‘for real life’ moment.”

Bluey already has an active presence on YouTube, where its official channel reaches more than five million subscribers and counts more than 3.7 billion lifetime views. The channel’s library includes a few full episodes and compilations from the Bluey TV show alongside Shorts that depict creations like Bluey songsBluey cakes, and Bluey street art.

The Book Reads web series will add some original content to that mix. The show’s first season will include ten episodes, which will roll out every other week until the final installment (Rob Delaney reading Daddy Putdow) arrives on June 14.

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