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The Legendary Thing!

Hey! If you don’t read Deadline, Variety, Hollywood Reporter, The Wrap, Mashable, or other entertainment reporting outlets, then I’ve got some stuff to tell you! Even if you do, I want to tell you in my own words because it’s kind of a big thing and I am pants-crappingly excited about it (OK, that’s figurative. mostly). You may have questions! I will provide answers!

To begin, please be charmed by this photo of me in a Tauntaun sleeping bag. Next, some history: Nerdist started as a wee Typepad blog four years ago this month, and with the support of kindly humans like yourself, we’ve grown quite a bit. Nerdist isn’t just an idea, or a podcast or a website or whatever else — I see it first and foremost as a community. As such, I feel like there’s a “we’re all in this together” vibe. So here’s the news:

Legendary Entertainment has acquired Nerdist Industries.

“What the shit, Chris Hardwick?! How could you sell your thing???” You and your yelling! But there are no dumb questions (except, “Should I punch that gorilla?”). First and foremost, you need to know that I’m not selling it OFF. Legendary — the company behind The Dark Knight, The Hangover, 300, Inception — is acquiring the existing structure of Nerdist. They’re like our older, bigger brother now. My business partner Peter Levin and I will have absolute autonomy over the running of our company. In that sense, it’s still ours. Additionally, we’ll get fancy executive roles at Legendary running all things digital for them — I’m heading up digital content and he’s heading up digital strategy. This is an amazingtastic opportunity for all involved.

Short story long: When I merged with Geek Chic Daily last June, it allowed me to scale up to do bigger things. I partnered with Peter because we had the same philosophical outlook on nerd culture and its role in entertainment — it should be represented authentically and made by those of us in its demographic, not some shit-ass corporate entity on a land-grab to exploit and capitalize on its recent popularity. Also, our personalities and companies PERFECTLY complemented one another. Peter was very business-minded with some creative ideas, and I came from the creative-y side with some business ideas. GCD had a business infrastructure and an email newsletter but no other content. I did nothing BUT make content, and had always intended (for reals) to establish a daily email newsletter. In one short year together, we managed to launch a YouTube channel with over 25 shows (in various stages of production), create and expand the podcast network, build out this here website to a respectable level, grow the newsletter, have a theater space, have a TV show, and create a 5-day lightsaber run to San Diego Comic-Con International for charity. It’s been a delightfully busy year!

But we’ve grown so fast that the company needed to scale properly. We now employ around 30 people. Making free content is expensive. So we started looking at options to be able to not only sustain the company but also continue to expand it. Why? Because it’s fun. I’m a creator-type, and I’m happiest when I’m creating and building. It’s kind of like real life SimCity to me, which still hangs near the top of my all time favorite games. So I guess it’s a real life expression of a real life simulator. I’m weird.

Enter Legendary. Sort of. They came over with Peter’s camp, and ultimately were Nerdist’s biggest investor. I can truly say that I always liked them as a company, long before they were involved in my affairs. Even with films that didn’t hit as big as The Dark Knight or Inception, I still always felt that they were trying to do something unique in a landscape of sameness. A few months ago, I went to their offices to podcast their head banana Thomas Tull, not really knowing what to expect. What happened was that we totally hit it off. Though on a MUCH bigger scale, Thomas was like me — a guy making stuff that he wanted to see exist in the world because he thought whatever it was would be a fun idea. I planned on releasing the podcast around Wrath of the Titans, but shortly after the recording a bigger conversation began to take place, so I held onto it. (I’ll release it soon.)

Legendary is a massive small company, if that makes any sense. They make huge films but aren’t corporate-y. The issue they faced is that they are somewhat top-heavy, in that it’s all blockbuster and very little street view. In other words, there isn’t much of a digital arm. Enter Nerdist. I see the same complementary relationship between us and Legendary that I saw between GCD and me. We’re not just an acquisition to them that “hopefully will pay off.” We’re a solid partnership that will help them grow just as much as they will help us. We will simultaneously pull Legendary into the digital space while extending our nerdy tendrils into film and television. Symbiosis! [read last word aloud in robot voice]

You won’t notice any change in the way we run things. Legendary was already an investor and you didn’t notice that. This exercise will be no different. The change you WILL notice is the breadth and quality of things we’ll now be able to create. And no, we will not become a trumpet solely to pimp Legendary’s properties. Thomas specifically told me NOT to do that (conveniently before I had to say that that was not my goal with this). We will cover them fairly, as we had in the past, and will remain impartial in our coverage of all things. I still love Marvel, IDW, DC, et al. That’s not going to change. What we WILL be able to do is have better access to stories, scoops, and behind the scenes goodness. Nerdist News is a particularly interesting piece of the puzzle for me, and this will help us build that out into a respectable li’l news engine that breaks stories and gets exclusives.

So that’s the whole story! I hope you trust me and understand that I would never haphazardly throw this all away. That’s not what’s happening at all. It means too much to me, and so do you. This is a HUGE thing for us and I’m nervously excited — kind of like a Chihuahua when he knows he’s about to get to go outside. Yeah, yeah, it feels slightly weird to sell your thing, but, editorially, it’s still 100% ours. And now we get to make cooler stuff. I really believe this is the best decision to help grow the company in the most positive way and ensure its longevity with a group of like-minded humans we respect. We hope to achieve some truly breathtaking things in our endeavors in the near future, and I sincerely hope you’ll stick with us!

I am now and always shall be your friend,

Chris “Wrath of Khan Spock” Hardwick

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  1. JetpackBlues says:

    To truly appreciate this, everyone should take the time and thumb waaay back through this site. Back to the days of 2007 when it was the sound of one hand clapping — when it was Chris’ blog (ironically 420 pages back).

    The gadget reviews and guest-spots on G4, articles for WIRED and videos for Wired Science, E3 coverage, etc.

    Then on to the Facebook group, Twitter and street teams promoting stand-up shows — the word starts getting out. Nerdist website is promoted at the end of Web Soup.

    A call for contributors, new articles and categories. Editors!

    Momentum builds as the podcast launches, people begin to recognize it as more than a thing. It’s new media in the making. Sponsors come on board, the guys take the podcast on the road to do it in your face.

    I presume everyone is now well versed in the more recent history. But if you’ve been around long enough, you’ve seen achievements being unlocked at an incredible rate.

    After the hat-tip Joel McHale gave last night on AOTS, of the acquisition by Legendary, Chris was humble and reminded Joel “I still have to run it!”

    Then Candace broke her Catwoman riding crop on his ass….

  2. Tim says:

    I know I’m late to the party but I still had to throw my congratulations in with the rest of the warm wishes. Because of Chris and Nerdist industries as a whole all of my friends know that when I say “so I heard today that…” the source of whatever follows was one of the many wonderful Nerdist podcasts or posts.

    Thanks for your devotion to a thing a ton of nerds really enjoy and for fostering a community of acceptance around fandom in all shapes and sizes.

  3. Jake says:

    Nervously excited is the right words for it. Definitely what I’m feeling right now.

  4. Graig says:

    Cynical post!

    Just kidding.

    The bills are getting paid and the art is getting made. Couldn’t be happier for everyone involved!

  5. T.J. Bandla says:

    Congratulations, Chris! Sounds like a great opportunity, & thanks for explaining it the way that you did – it helps keep the cynical nonsense away.

    Good luck, sir!

  6. Fantas! says:


  7. rayzobho says:

    Allow me to add my congratulations to the steadily-growing pile of adulation. You’ve been one of my favorite comics for years — you were even good on f***ing SHIPMATES, of all things –, and it’s awesome to see you finally gain the sort of success you deserve. I’m looking forward to what you’re able to do with a nice healthy infusion of Dark Knight money! \m/

  8. The Chad says:

    Congrats Chris! That’s just a big ass bag of awesomness! And thanks for the explanation, very cool of you!

    Continued success to you…

  9. Patti Brown says:

    Congrats, Chris! I am so happy for you! Thanks so much for taking the time to explain what this all means. It sounds like a great partnership! I will add that I will always be your friend as well. <3 you!

  10. grumpyoldnerd says:

    I remember when being a nerd meant getting the crap beat outta you.

    Hardwick remembers. Good to see a cousin doing well. Thanks for all your hard work.

    Try to take some time off and roll in your riches. You sometimes sound like too little butter over too much bread. Decompress, dude. You’ll poop better.

  11. D.J. says:

    I love that an announcement like this has not been followed with any sort of trolling (that I’ve noticed, at least). Also that about 20% of people have made up words for how awesome this is and about another %30 have made some sort of “legen… wait for it…. dary” joke. Both of which I am totally okay with.

    I love that Nerdist Industries, which I admit I’ve only been a fan of for about 6 months but love every friggin minute of it, is taking off bigger and bigger and bigger. Hopefully this launches into a tv channel for Nerdist or something along those lines!

  12. grumpyoldnerd says:

    I remember when being a nerd meant getting the crap beat outta you. I remember when the term was used to humiliate. I remember having nowhere to go.

    Hardwick remembers.

    Thanks buddy.

  13. Kenadee says:

    Congratulations, guys! This must be so exciting for everyone involved and I can’t wait to see what comes of it.

  14. Kenadee says:

    Congratulations, guys! This must be so exciting for everyone involved and I can’t wait to see what comes of it. Chris, you’re such an inspiration.

  15. Joe Vichich says:

    Congratulations Chris! I hope this can be a model for other indie+corporate partnerships. Keep creating!

  16. my_leisure says:

    It’s really, really nice to see good things happening to good people for a change.

  17. Nolan Crispus says:

    Nice! 😀

  18. Eric C2 says:

    Hey look, another Eric C!

    First things first: congratulations. I’ve listened to the podcast since day one. Also, you gave a home to folks like Pete and Todd, who’ve both entertained and enlightened me so very much. You’ll forever have my gratitude and fandom for providing all of this great free entertainment that has injected huge, warm loads of positive energy into the infosphere-womb.

    Knowing just how far you’ve come in since deciding to become sober and get your life in order – it’s downright humbling and inspiring.

    But as a fan of comedy, I can’t help feeling a little melancholy mix of emotions seeing a talented standup gradually grow away from his first calling into something more like a media executive. You’re one of the good guys, you’ll obviously be great at it, and it’s good to have someone like you on the inside, but still…

    All the best, and thanks again for the funny on this (wait for it….) Legendary day.

  19. Eric C. says:

    Congratulations on the purchase/promotion, Chris! Your work with Nerdist has been a great example of what is possible. I can’t wait to see where it goes from here.

  20. Stephanie says:

    Wow, this is pretty fucking big news first thing in the morning. Congrats Chris! Internet hugs to you and all at Nerdist!

  21. Devilhead says:

    That’s awesome. Nostril blowjobs all around I guess.

  22. Niki says:


  23. Kester Dunn says:

    That’s great news! Huge Congrats sir. I can’t wait to see where things go from here.

  24. Pedak says:


  25. Corey Scott says:

    Could not be happier for you and your team, Chris! And for all of us, the fans, who get to enjoy all you do.

    Congratulations, man! Well-deserved!

  26. TylerB says:

    Congrats Chris! This sounds awesome!

  27. Fausto rivera says:

    I am giving the Nerdist guys a giant hug in dallas

  28. Nikki says:

    Such fantasticly exciting news. Pure definition of win-win… you get to grow and continue doing what you do even better while keeping all your IP rights, they get access to a core market and a framework for delivery. Excited for you and to see what all comes from it.

  29. Chris W. says:

    Best of luck, Chris. Not many get to live the dream. Embrace it, keep the standards high, and conquer the world.

  30. Michelle says:

    I hope you made a crapload of money, Chris! You created a great thing and it’s worth a crapload to me and a lot of people. Congrats!

  31. oma says:

    You guys continue to impress! The podcasts are always entertaining and the new Nerdist Youtube channel is a destination website for me everyday. I sing your praises every chance i get! 😀

  32. Michelle says:

    I hope you made a crapload of money, Chris! You created a great thing and it’s worth a crapload to me and a lot of people. Congratulations on making huge strides for us nerds!

  33. Jax says:

    That is crazy town banana pants awesometastic! Yay! Congratulations, Chris, and everyone at Nerdist Industries!

  34. Josh says:

    Ha ha ha ha!! @Matt Koble wins for the aquiteamup bjt.

    Congrats CH!!!! Talk about pimp my burrito!!!

  35. Katie says:

    Thanks for taking the time to share this news with us! I’m glad you told us what’s going on.

  36. Harry says:

    Thank god good things still happen to good people. Hazzaa Sir!

  37. DefconDan says:

    Again Chris congrats so glad I checked the Nerdist podcast out so long ago… It and other podcast / YouTube you have brought on have given me tons of entertainment … I have an will continue to support you and wish you all the best!! Now you really do have first world problems now!!

  38. Scott says:

    Nerdist has officially become LEGEN-wait for it-DARY!!!

  39. Meaghan says:

    Holy crapballs! Congrats Chris!

  40. Huzzah and congratulations!

    I’m hoping you’ll still have time to do the Nerdist Podcast (including live shows…specifically from Chicago) but if you don’t because of the new awesomeness I’ll totally understand.

  41. Paul M. says:

    Kudos Chris!

    Good to see a nice nerd do well!

  42. Alicia C. says:

    Early adopters like myself have never felt so proud/smug. Congratulations.

    I still sing Tom Lennon’s Nerdist Podcast song in the shower.

  43. K says:

    Ding! Grats!

  44. Ethan Hensler says:

    This news is amazeballs. Cant wait to see what the future holds in store for Nerdists everywhere. Vaginal Dryness!

  45. Holly Vandecar says:


    I told you years ago that you were the most talented young man I knew & guess what? I WAS RIGHT! Look at where you are today! I am proud of you & I was your first fan ever! Congrats!!!

    Holly 🙂

  46. jessica says: