Turner Studios has opened a 10,000 square foot arena in Atlanta dedicated to filming esports competitions, bolstering its commitment to broadcasting live gaming events on network television.
The venue will make its debut alongside the initial rounds of a season-spanning Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournament this month, and key moments will be broadcast on the television network TBS.
Turner’s “Eleague Arena” houses a live studio audience and an elaborate 26-camera setup, allowing for both wide-angle shots and up-close views of individual competitors. The facility will make its first public appearance via Twitch on May 24 to commemorate the launch of Turner’s esports-focused Eleague organization.
“We are all incredibly excited for the launch of Eleague and the opportunity to showcase this live event experience from our new state-of-the-art facility,” said Turner Sports president Lenny Daniels. “We’re fully committed to providing a best-in-class production experience that will extend across all platforms and we will continue to serve the passionate esports community with high quality, engaging content that always has the live gaming competition at its core.”
Turner also announced that it has signed a multi-year agreement with Twitch to “distribute live event coverage and on-demand content” for Eleague matches.
“At Twitch, we love to see partners push the envelope of live digital broadcasting,” said Twitch COO Kevin Lin. “Turner […] investing heavily in esports with Eleague is a great move in the right direction for the development of the industry, with their expertise sure to elevate the experience for fans, players and teams alike.”
Turner’s move into the competitive gaming market follows up on recently announced esports initiatives from ESPN and Electronic Arts. Earlier this month, publisher Activision announced that it had partnered with Facebook to broadcast Major League Gaming competitions via the popular social network.
TBS will air its first Eleague broadcast as part of a special showcase event on May 27.