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Actor and CEO of HitRecord Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Photo: Paul Marotta/Getty Images

Today at the Upfront Summit I'll be interviewing actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Not because he recently played Edward Snowden in a film — or Robin, for that matter — but because he's CEO of a startup called HitRecord that today will announce $6.4 million in Series A funding.

Driving the news: The company has actually been around since 2010, but this is its first round of outside funding.

Details: It's basically an online artist collaboration platform, whereby users contribute/edit/etc. on projects that range from songs to video games to short films. If the project ends up being sold (or was originally contracted, like was recently done with a Ubisoft game), then the creators get pro-rated payments based on their contributions (which can range from a dollar to over $1,000).

  • Gordon-Levitt, who serves as CEO of the 24-person team, says the funding should help HitRecord expand into "a platform." In pragmatic terms, that means it won't be coming up with all the project ideas, instead allowing proposals to be fed directly into the system by others.
  • Javelin Venture Partners led the round and was joined by Crosslink Capital and Advancit Capital. Gordon-Levitt explains that he intentionally sought money from Silicon Valley tech investors instead of from Hollywood entertainment investors, because he knows the part of the business he doesn't know.

Go deeper: Netflix takes on the movie industry

Go deeper

Updated 7 hours ago - World

Mexican President López Obrador tests positive for coronavirus

Mexico's President Andrés Manuel López Obrador during a press conference at National Palace in Mexico City, Mexico, on Wednesday. Photo: Ismael Rosas/Eyepix Group/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador announced Sunday evening that he's tested positive for COVID-19.

Driving the news: López Obrador tweeted that he has mild symptoms and is receiving medical treatment. "As always, I am optimistic," he added. "We will all move forward."

7 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Sarah Huckabee Sanders to run for governor of Arkansas

Sarah Huckabee Sanders at FOX News' studios in New York City in 2019. Photo: Steven Ferdman/Getty Images

Former White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders will announce Monday that she's running for governor of Arkansas.

The big picture: Sanders was touted as a contender after it was announced she was leaving the Trump administration in June 2019. Then-President Trump tweeted he hoped she would run for governor, adding "she would be fantastic." Sanders is "seen as leader in the polls" in the Republican state, notes the Washington Post's Josh Dawsey, who first reported the news.

Coronavirus has inflamed global inequality

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

History will likely remember the pandemic as the "first time since records began that inequality rose in virtually every country on earth at the same time." That's the verdict from Oxfam's inequality report covering the year 2020 — a terrible year that hit the poorest, hardest across the planet.

Why it matters: The world's poorest were already in a race against time, facing down an existential risk in the form of global climate change. The coronavirus pandemic could set global poverty reduction back as much as a full decade, according to the World Bank.