As ‘Shiny Happy People’ Achieves Prime Video’s Biggest Docuseries Debut Ever, Amazon TV Chief Vernon Sanders Talks Strategy (EXCLUSIVE)

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“Shiny Happy People: Duggar Family Secrets” has had the biggest debut of any documentary series ever produced by Amazon Studios, Variety has learned.

The limited series investigates controversies surrounding the Duggar family, best known for TLC’s “19 Kids and Counting,” including Josh Duggar’s conviction for possession of child pornography and the family’s connection to the Institute in Basic Life Principles, a controversial Christian organization.

After premiering on Amazon Prime Video with all four episodes on June 2, “Shiny Happy People” reached more viewers in its first nine days than any Amazon docuseries, including high-profile titles like “LuLaRich,” the 2021 docuseries that examined the LuLaRoe pyramid scheme. (An exact tally of viewers for these series is unknown.)

Additionally, measured over the same nine-day period, the series has been responsible for the acquisition of more new Prime Video customers than any other Amazon docuseries. More than 60% of “Shiny Happy People” viewers have been women, with more of those women falling into the 18-34 age demographic than even Amazon could have hoped for: “I’d love to tell you that we knew for sure it was going to do exactly what it’s done,” says Amazon Studios’ head of television Vernon Sanders, “but it’s been multiples higher than what we anticipated.”

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