Just as Mitch Hurwitz, Jim Vallely, and Dean Lorey begin writing the new 10-episode season of the once-cancelled-and-recently-internet-greenlit Fox television show Arrested Development (scheduled to air on Netflix sometime in 2013), Crackle greenlights another entrant into the Long-Form-Content-of-Television-Quality-but-Distributed-Online fray.
Andrew Wallenstein at Variety reports the digital network, studio, and destination for television programs, movies, and a healthy amount of original web series just ordered six episodes of a half-hour anthology series dubbed The Unkown. Sons of Anarchy producer Chris Collins and the Co-Head of Fox Writers Studio Steve Tzirlin are on board to executive produce.
The Unkown will be in the vein of The X-Files, Creepshow, and/or Twilight Zone and is scheduled scheduled to go into production in March for a 2012 release. That’s almost a full year after Eric Berger, Executive Vice President of Digital Networks at Sony Pictures Television, announced Crackle would make a pivot into long-form, but still male-leaning programming. Previously, the network had been home to high-profile original web series like The Bannen Way, Angel of Death and Jailbait, which were released in short, palatable installments for online audiences and recut into 100-or-so-minute theatrical versions for DVD sales and overseas distribution.
The Unkown is one of three projects Berger revealed last May. The other two are Monster Heist (a show about a non-human group of thieves from Ghost Whisperer creators Kim Moses and Ian Sander) and Strand Street (a series from Milo Ventimiglia, Kevin Townsley and Russ Cundiff about “a rookie undercover cop who infiltrates a gang in his childhood town”).
Seth Green’s Issues (a partially animated online original featuring a disgruntled psychologist sorting out the “bizarre neuroses and psychoses” of animated superheroes) and Patrick Warburton’s Effin’ with Tonight (in which the Seinfeld star plays an animated talk show host) were two of the latest short-form web series to debut on Crackle.