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TMLA Panel Wrap-Up: The Lizzie Bennet Diaries

March 6, 2013 Meetup No Comments
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From left: Bernie Su, Jenni Powel, Margaret Dunlap, Jay Bushman. Photo: Audra Congress

TMLA’s Emmett Furey contributed greatly to this report. Pictures by Audra Congress.

Monday night’s meetup focused on the Streamy and IAWTV award winning webseries The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. This transmedia powered adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice is one of the greatest examples of independent transmedia production around today. (For more on the show, see our earlier post.)

Series co-creator and executive producer Bernie Su was in attendance at Monday night’s event along with co-executive producer Margaret Dunlap, producer Jenni Powell and transmedia producer Jay Bushman. Su, Dunlap and Bushman are all part of the show’s writing staff.

What follows are some of the highlights from the event.
… Continue Reading

The TMLA Guide to… The Lizzie Bennet Diaries

Publicity Image: The Lizzie Bennet Diaries

Publicity Image: The Lizzie Bennet Diaries

By far from the definitive guide to the webseries that adapts Pride & Prejudice, this article is intended as a jumping off point for those Transmedia LA regulars who have yet to dive into the series and plan on attending Monday night’s Meetup.

The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, known to fans as TheLBD, reframes Jane Austen’s classic novel as an interconnected series of vlogs and social media accounts. The central YouTube account is LizzieBennet, and it was here less than a year ago that Elizabeth “Lizzie” Bennet (Ashley Clements) began her video diary with the immortal first line:

“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.”

Here printed on a t-shirt. Setting the tone for the series to come. That first episode introduces Lizzie, her best friend Charlotte Lu (Julia Cho), and her sister Lydia (Mary Kate Wiles).

The central YouTube account, which adheres to the Vlog format, tells the story of the novel from Lizzie’s point of view. As the story unfolds more members of the cast join the series, some of whom are given spin-offs (TheLydiaBennet being your humble writer’s personal favorite) and lives of their own on social media. William Darcy (Daniel Gordh), the romantic lead in Austin’s novel, makes his first appearance in the series’ world via Twitter. The character’s presence was maintained there for months before showing up on screen.

Read more about The LBD and find the Meetup details after the jump…
… Continue Reading

Notes From The Second Annual Town Hall

February 7, 2013 Meetup 1 Comment

A year ago we met at USC Annenberg for the first time, getting to know our new digs and each other seemingly better than we ever had at Cafe Metro. My how we’ve grown, and the town hall this week at our new home– Busby’s East– was full of a cross-section of the community.

Transmedia LA Managing Director Hal Hefner (@halhefner) couldn’t attend due to illness and that left your humble narrator to play MC.

First up, we asked for a show of hands on who wanted a quick intro to “Transmedia 101″. There were a lot more hands raised up than I was expecting, even a few amongst the veteran meetup members. Probably looking to start a definition cage match. Ha! But that was not to be TMLA co-founder and elder statesman Jay Bushman (@jaybushman) gave a solid impromptu talk. Jay didn’t even know he was going to be pressed into service until about ten minutes before the event began. One of the members got the talk on tape and has promised to share once it’s up online. … Continue Reading

December Monthly Meetup Welcomes the Founders of Fourth Wall Studios – Jim, Elan and Sean

November 18, 2012 Meetup No Comments

Transmedia LA, proudly welcomes Jim Stewartson, Elan Lee and Sean Stewart, the founders of  the Emmy Award Winning multi-platform storytelling studio, Fourth Wall , as our special guests for the December meetup.

The last Meetup of 2012 is going to end the year with a bang and start off the month of December in a celebratory fashion as we invite Jim, Sean and Elan to give us insight as to what an amazing year 2012 was for them. Fourth Wall Studios busted onto the scene in 2012 with their groundbreaking platform, RIDES and in the process won the adoration of many fans with their original content such as Dirty Work, Flare and Airship Dracula and in the process, won an Emmy.

As Fourth Wall heads into 2103 on fire, we are presenting a great opportunity for those interested in Transmedia, to listen to three of the most important people in the industry today.

Jim, Elan and Sean will  join us for a fun, informal discussion about the launching of RIDES and what it is like to be driving the reigns of a hybrid studio that produces software and content that is pushing the boundaries of traditional media.

 

EVENT DETAILS:

Date: Monday, December 3rd, 2012

Time: 7- 10 PM

 

AGENDA:
Networking: 7-8 PM

Guest Speakers: 8-9 PM

More Networking: 9-10PM

 

ADDRESS:

Busby’s East

5364 Wilshire Boulevard Los Angeles, CA 90036

(323) 525-2615

 

TransmediaLA continues to celebrate our new home at Busby’s East!

Food and alcohol are available for purchase at Busby’s!

So please join us on 11/5 and meet some new friends, network with new business connections, eat some food, have a drink and learn something new while you’re doing it!

Busby’s East is a central location between the Valley and the West Side and is located in the Miracle Mile on Wilshire Boulevard, just west of La Brea Ave.

Directions to Busby’s East: 

We will be meeting in the Ballroom, on the second floor, just to the right when you walk up the stairs.
PARKING:
There is metered street parking, parking in the back and side streets.

ABOUT FOURTH WALL STUDIOS:

Website: http://www.fourthwallstudios.com

RIDES: http://www.rides.tv

 

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July Meetup – Jackie Turnure

July 12, 2012 Meetup No Comments

It was an honor to have Jackie Turnure, Head of Production at Fourth Wall Studios, come speak to us yesterday for this month’s meetup over at USC Annenberg School of Communication & Journalism.

Brief Bio:

As Head of Production at Fourth Wall Studios Jackie supervises all the production of the studio’s slate, including Rides TV’s flagship project ‘Dirty Work.’ Prior to Fourth Wall, Turnure was the Head of Production and Development at Hoodlum Entertainment, where she produced the “Dharma Wants You,” a multiplatform campaign for ABC’s Lost which won the 2009 Primetime Creative Arts Emmy®. While at Hoodlum, Turnure supervised a number of other projects, including “Join the Mosaic,” an interactive prequel for ABC’s television series FlashForward.  Also “Day X Exists,” a global prequel for the release of the feature film Salt (Sony Pictures Entertainment), and Hoodlum’s original multiplatform series “Slide,” a 10 x 1 hour for Foxtel.

Case Study Highlights – Dharma Wants You

When working for a studio, one is more limited in terms of the types of things you can do. You have to keep in mind the branding of the product at all times, and all the restrictions imposed by the studio.

In the case of “Dharma Wants You,” the multiplatform campaign for ABC’s show Lost, Jackie’s team was challenged by the fact that the studio wanted to build buzz about the show between season 4 and 5. However, they were not allowed to work with the original actors, or with the original story canon for the property. They were given a very small budget and a very limited time. Essentially, Jackie’s team was looking at designing a strategy from ground zero.

The result was coming up with a plan to re-brand the Dharma Initiative, and launch a campaign consisting of three parts, starting with an ARG during Comic Con that year.

Lessons Learned:

The most important asset the team had was a deep understanding of Lost’s fandom. They understood what exactly drove Lost’s fans, what kind of audience they were, and how best to tap into their expectations and desires.

They took advantage of the competitive drive of the Lost fans attending Comic Con that year by creating an immersive booth experience that had players experience a test by the Dharma Initiative. Only 300 people were allotted to go through the experience during the Convention, making it a coveted and unique experience. In addition, during the official panel for the property that year, an interruptive performance was the highlight that really gave momentum to the property during the con, generating immediate buzz throughout the fandom.

After the convention, phase two consisted of taking the recruiting test online, which help unlock more background story about the Dharma organization as one went through the different levels of the online experience.  By the end of the experience the network not only had compiled an audience ready to jump into the new season of the show, but the show went onto win the Primetime Creative Arts Emmy®.  And, while the studio ended up cutting the third phase of the campaign, the team felt reassured that the overall strategy for the campaign really spoke to their understanding of fan behavior and how to design for it.

Case Study Highlights – SLIDE

Slide was a hybrid of sorts. It was a co production between Foxtel Australia and the producers who were invested in having the Transmedia elements be part of the 360 original canon from the very beginning.  Jackie’s team over at Hoodlum were in the great position of not only having access to the actors, but the ability to set a production schedule that allotted for the creation of the Transmedia elements simultaneously while in production. It was an ideal and very unique situation, though somewhat costly.

Lessons Learned:

The most important asset the team had was a deep understanding of where the demographic for the audience of the show lived. They were online, on their mobile, and interacting on different platforms simultaneously.

So for Slide, Jackie’s team needed to tell the story of five teens during the last 10 weeks of school. However, they needed to tell the story in an organic manner that would show the flow of all the different platforms and how they naturally pertain to the different characters of the show.

Inherently, the property produced a vast variety of content for fans to explore via webisodes in between TV shows, an interactive graphic novel, blogs, games, twitter and facebook accounts, polls and contests… all materials carefully synchronized with the characters and what they were doing in real time.

The main challenge for the property was product placement, because of the nature of the IP. Also, because of the way all the content was in synch with what the characters were doing in real time, the show format was geo locked. And while the producers of the show are looking into selling the property and all its transmedia elements to different territories, there are many inherent logistics that make for a complex transaction.

Case Study Highlights – Dirty Work

Dirty Work is an original IP produced by Fourth Wall Studios with its new proprietary platform called RIDES.  The platform works as a re-playable engine that allows audiences to go back and experience properties that are developed and built specifically to be consumed in multiple platforms.

In the case of Dirty Work, the driving platform is the Rides Hub, which works as a TV portal. In addition, the content is prompted to be consumed in a matrix of different media channels including phones, behind the scenes virtual cards, email, messaging, facebook and twitter profiles, etc.

Lessons Learned:

The most important thing to consider when building a Transmedia property from the ground up is to know who your audience is. However, it is of vital importance to also know where the brand money can come from, after all this is a business.

Nonetheless, you must also consider, that in order to fuse these two together with innovative technology (that hopefully can be licensed soon!) one must always go back to the story and consider new ways of dimensionalizing the property. Like, for example, setting something in a platform that is only paid off in another platform.

One of the main challenges that team faced with Dirty Work was to make sure to keep up with the needs of different screens. This is the main reason why the team decided to move away from Flash and into HTML5, just to make sure all the content can be consumed by all audiences in any one particular device.

 

 

May Meetup with Gary Baseman

May 2, 2012 Meetup No Comments

It was such a pleasure to have Gary come speak to us over at IndieDesk yesterday. We had a great discussion on building storywords around art. The meetup was live-streamed and recorded. The video is available bellow in 2 parts. Enjoy!

Watch live streaming video from transmediala at livestream.com

Watch live streaming video from transmediala at livestream.com

Video of Alex Leavitt’s Presentation

March 7, 2012 Meetup No Comments

The livestream recording of Alex Leavitt‘s presentation from last night’s meetup is available below (recorded at the USC’s Annenberg School of Communication)!

Watch live streaming video from transmediala at livestream.com

TLA Meetup with Kent Nichols

October 6, 2011 Meetup 2 Comments

This chat at our last meetup was presented by Kent Nichols, Outreach Partner at Blip.TV. Kent shared his personal experiences creating and producing online content, as well as provided practical advice to anyone producing their own online content.

in addition to the video below, you may also want to read Christine Weitbrecht’s write up of Kent’s talk.

TLA Meetup with Dr. Henry Jenkins

September 28, 2011 Meetup 5 Comments

We’re thrilled to share the following video of Dr. Henry Jenkins chatting with TLA at our 9/21/11 Meetup. Kind thanks to Dr. Jenkins for taking time to share his thoughts with us about transmedia and his upcoming book on spreadable media!