Gunpowder & Sky’s DUST and XPRIZE Announce Second Season and Writers/Talent For Wildly Popular Podcast

Gunpowder & Sky’s sci-fi brand, DUST, along with XPRIZE - a non-profit that designs and operates incentive competitions to solve humanity’s grand challenges - announced today that they have partnered to create the second season of DUST’s immersive narrative podcast, “SEAT 14C”. Based on XPRIZE’s science fiction anthology of short stories, “SEAT 14C” is written by iconic, sci-fi writers such as Sheila Finch (The Guild of Xenolinguists), Daniel H. Wilson (The Clockwork Dynasty), Charles Yu (The Third Class Superhero), Kathleen Ann Goonan (Queen City Jazz), Chen Qiufan (translated by Ken Liu) and Justina Robson (Keeping It Real). 
DUST signed on Dan Stevens (Beauty And The Beast, “Downton Abbey”), Danny Trejo (Machete, “Sons Of Anarchy”), Alfred Molina (Chocolat, Magnolia), Keith David (Armageddon, The Princess And The Frog), Reid Scott (“Veep”, “The Big C”) and Suzy Nakamura (“Dr. Ken”, Horrible Bosses 2) as lead voice actors for the upcoming audio series. 

“After overwhelming requests from our audience to give them audio stories, and the success of our first series, we are doubling down on building out our podcast efforts, led by Stephen Michael,” said Floris Bauer, President, Gunpowder & Sky. “Our next season, consisting of multiple mind bending stories by some of the most talented writers in the genre, perfectly exemplifies what DUST is all about.”

Season one of the podcast series, “DUST Horizons,” premiered in October as an anthology of audio stories by classic science fiction literary visionaries such as Philip K. Dick (Minority Report, Total Recall) and Ray Bradbury (Fahrenheit 451, The Martian Chronicles), as well as emerging speculative fiction voices such as Alex Irvine (Supernatural: John Winchester's Journal), R.K. Nickel (Guilds and Glaives), Alan O’Doherty and Phoebe A. Xavier. In less than 30 days, “DUST Horizons” hit #1 in Apple’s ‘New & Noteworthy’ section, breaking into the Top 100 Podcasts in the US.  Best-selling author of ‘The Martian’ Andy Weir called the series “superb.”  Most recently, the series was selected for Stitcher’s “Best in Fiction 2019” list. 

Season two of the series, “SEAT 14C”, revolves around the tales of passengers on an ANA flight that mysteriously lands in San Francisco 20 years in the future. The written anthology was created and spearheaded by Eric Desatnik on behalf of XPRIZE and All Nippon Airways (ANA). Produced in partnership with The Invisible Studios, “DUST Horizons” is available on all major podcast platforms.

Following season one’s success, DUST also announces that Stephen Michael has been appointed Head of Audio. Prior to joining DUST, Michael was a Producer for Gizmodo Media Group, creating content across their numerous sites, including Gizmodo, Earther, The Root and Deadspin. Prior to Gizmodo Media Group, Michael served as Producer for Fusion Media Group where he wrote and produced breaking news, political satire, and evergreen videos for Fusion TV and their digital properties. He began his media career as an Executive Producer at Bare Knuckle Media managing a discretionary fund for acquiring intellectual properties for development in TV and Film.

The launch of DUST Audio comes on the heels of DUST’s channel expansion across OTT platforms, including its recent launch on ‘The Roku Channel’. DUST is in more than 50 million U.S. households and has continued to expand globally, reaching audiences in the UK, Germany, Austria, and Holland on Samsung TV+. In September, DUST Studios announced that they acquired U.S. rights to filmmaker Neasa Hardiman’s critically-acclaimed Irish sci-fi/thriller SEA FEVER following its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. The company will release the film theatrically in the U.S. in early 2020. 

Gunpowder & Sky is a fast-growing independent global entertainment company creating premium content unrestricted by format, as well as genre-specific destinations for the streaming generation.

Since its inception in 2016, Gunpowder & Sky has released more than 30 feature films and series, as well as hundreds of short films theatrically, on TVOD as well as in partnership with leading platforms such as HBO, Netflix, MTV, Hulu, Sky, Showtime, DirecTV, Amazon, Facebook, YouTube, and soon Quibi and HBO Max.

With in-house development, production, marketing and distribution capabilities, the company operates as a full 360-studio and oversees a library of more than 1500 titles. Notable films and series include The Little HoursCamHearts Beat Loud, Lords of Chaos, Her Smell, Tragedy Girls, Summer of 84, Villains, Hounds of Love and “Drawn and Recorded”. Gunpowder & Sky has announced several upcoming series including; “Survive”, “50 States of Fright” and “The Drop”.

With an audience of more than 50M monthly unique visitors, Gunpowder & Sky’s current streaming networks include DUST, a sci-fi brand that presents thought-provoking visions of the future; ALTER, a new horror brand that explores the human condition through warped perspectives; and CUT, an unscripted comedy brand that is home to “Truth or Drink” and “Grandmas Smoking Weed”. DUST, ALTER and CUT are presently distributed on HBO, Vizio TV, Comcast FLEX, Roku, YouTube, Facebook, AT&T, DirecTV, Sinclair, Samsung TV Plus and Instagram.

Headquartered in Los Angeles with offices in New York and London, Gunpowder & Sky was founded by Van Toffler and Floris Bauer, in partnership with The Chernin Group and AT&T.

DUST, a division of global content studio Gunpowder & Sky, is the first premium sci-fi entertainment brand that reaches fans across all platforms, giving voice to both emerging and established filmmakers.

DUST presents thought-provoking science fiction content, exploring the future of humanity through the lens of science and technology. From timeless classics to cutting-edge movies, series, short films, and podcasts, DUST acquires, produces and distributes all content types.

In 2018, DUST released the Zach Strauss directed short film Bad Peter at Tribeca - a cautionary tale about an overbearing AI assistant - starring Golden-Globe nominee Frankie Shaw ("SMILF"). DUST also premiered the feature film PROSPECT starring Pedro Pascal (“Narcos”, “Game of Thrones”, Equalizer 2), which recently debuted in the U.S. on Hulu, and internationally on Netflix.  

In 2019, DUST released ZERO, a post-apocalyptic story of survival and hope, directed by the Brothers Lynch and starring Bella Ramsey (“Game of Thrones”).

With more than 15M monthly uniques, DUST operates its own channels that are available on multiple platforms including YouTube, Facebook, VRV, Pluto, Xumo, Samsung Plus, Sincalir’s STIRR, Sinclair’s TBD, NBC Watchback, and Vizio. Through its partnership with USC’s School of Cinematic Arts, DUST premiered the George Lucas 1967 short film, “Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB”, followed by premieres of legendary filmmaker Robert Zemeckis’ 1972 student short film “The Lift” and ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi” filmmaker  Rian Johnson’s student short film “Evil Demon Golf Ball From Hell”.

DUST also hosts podcasts and special events such as “The Future Is Female” screening that celebrates female sci-fi directors in film, as well as 'Represent: Diversity in Sci-Fi', an art show and panel celebrating and examining multicultural voices in the sci-fi genre.

On August 18th, 2018, DUST launched DUSTx on Roku, a new sci-fi channel featuring timeless movies such as A Scanner Darkly, Bill & Ted's Excellent AdventureStar Trek: First Generation, Paycheck, and The Running Man, as well as series such as “Mystery Science Theater 3000”, “Ray Bradbury's Science Theater”, “Beyond Westworld”, and the original “Roswell”; in addition, DUST 500+ short films by the talent of tomorrow, including Rise, Jonah, and Automata.

On August 19th, 2019, DUST launched the DUSTmobile app on both iOS and Android, with a launch on AppleTV soon to follow.

XPRIZE designs and operates multi-million-dollar, global competitions to incentivize the development of technological breakthroughs that accelerate humanity toward a better future. Active competitions include the $20 Million NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE, $10 Million ANA Avatar XPRIZE, the $5 Million IBM Watson AI XPRIZE, and the $10 Million Rainforest XPRIZE. For more information, visit


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