While my last few posts have focused on major moves being made in the mobile video field (see here, here, and here), there have been some major recent moves in the realm of original online content as well.
Today, Michael Eisner will debut its new Webisode video series Prom Queen, a series of 80 episodes which will each be 90 seconds in duration. The series will debut a new episode each week and is being produced by Vuguru, Eisner's digital production group. Prom Queen will be a mystery series.
Last week, Eisner made a deal with New Corporation's MySpace to have exclusive first rights to the content, which will be distributed across several online video platforms. The deal stipulates that each new episode of Prom Queen will launch at 7 p.m. Sunday evenings Eastern time on MySpace and then on Monday mornings at the official Prom Queen site, on Youtube, and other online video distribution platforms.
The deal also includes original content for MySpace.
Viewers can subscribe to the official site to receive new episodes. According to the official description of the show, Prom Queen will focus on senior year at Edward Adams High School and the buildup to senior prom and a major secret. The series will focus on five girls nominated for prom queen and the battle for the "prestigious" honor.
On a tangential side note, my wife recently bought Prom Night 2: Hello Mary Lou, and we watched it on DVD. Let's just hope the "something terrible" that is going to happen to one of these girls won't be as bad as it was for poor Mary Lou back in 1957.
According to The Associated Press story, the deal with MySpace allows "fans to interact with the show's characters, each of whom will have their own MySpace profile. MySpace users will also be able to post the episodes on their own personal pages."
With the MySpace users getting the first look at Prom Queen, and with MySpace promoting the series to its users, Eisner has the groundwork in place for a community to build around the content--if the content connects with the audience, of course. A community is also in place to spread the word quickly about why the series isn't worth watching.
Last week, I wrote about MySpace's desire to control content on its pages, particularly in the types of add-on features available to its users. This deal furthers the company's desired goal of creating a clear platform to promote and spread content through its official promotion, even as MySpace has likewise become a haven for grassroots marketing.