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Podcast News Bites: iHeart, AudioFile, Auddia, Spotify.

…The TV adaptation of iHeartPodcasts’ Happy Face podcast has flushed out its cast. Actors Tamera Tomakili, Annaleigh Ashford, Dennis Quaid and James Wolk are onboard, says Deadline. The series will offer a take on the true-life story of Melissa More. As laid out in the podcast, Moore investigates the crimes committed by her father, the serial killer Keith Hunter Jesperson. The TV series puts the lead character in a race against time to find out if in innocent man is about to be executed for a crime her father committed. The series is set for a 2025 release on Paramount+. Along with, the first season of Happy Face was produced by CBS Studios, King Size Productions, iHeartPodcasts and Semi-Formal Productions.

…AudioFile’s short-form daily literary podcast Behind the Mic today marks a milestone with release of episode No, 1,500. Every Monday through Friday, longtime host Jo Reed speaks with AudioFile editors recommending the best in audiobook listening along with additional exclusive bonus episodes featuring narrators and other special guests. All in six minutes or less. “Our podcast focuses on narrator performances for the best listening experience,” Reed says. “Personally, I’m honored to bring listeners Behind the Mic — and thrilled my voice made it to episode 1,500.” To celebrate this milestone, AudioFile this week is running a limited series “Meet the Voices Behind the Mic” introducing all five editors for the first time. Editors will highlight their favorite episodes, talk about their personal audiobook preferences, and swoon over audiobook narrators. It kicks off with AudioFile founder and Editor Robin Whitten.

Auddia has in recent weeks scrapped a $15 million acquisition and announced it was tweaking its podcast focus from just serving as a content distributor to also becoming a third-party technology provider. It will now have some cash to help power that effort as well as potentially fund two other pending acquisitions. Auddia says it has raised $3.5 million of new financing. They money was raised by selling 1.3 million shares of company stock. “This financing allows us to lock these products into our roadmap in an ongoing effort to improve the user experience and performance metrics.” Said Chief Product Marketing Officer Theo Romeo. Auddia has said it is in “advanced discussions” with two other acquisition targets.

…The advertising research firm COMvergence reports that Publicis Media has picked up duties for buying Spotify’s advertising beginning in June. MediaPost reports Publicis has created a dedicated unit called OneVibe to service the account. “As Spotify’s always-on support, Publicis will assist with global and regional brand media, as well as performance marketing,” a Spotify rep said. The search for a new media buying spot began last summer. Spotify previously worked with Interpublic’s media buying agencies.

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