Over the weekend, October’s issue of Wired Magazine arrived at the office – and before we even had a chance to thumb through the editorials, the magazine flipped open to a bulky insert containing a Blu-Ray disc version of WIMO’s Coma, which includes an exclusive director’s cut, presented “in its entirety in stunning Blu-ray technology.”
We’ve been watching Coma since it debuted on Crackle in late August – and despite an average 2 minutes of opening and closing credits per 6 minute episode – the show’s high production value, score, and acting talent (Michael Madsen, George Hamilton) don’t disappoint.
But, with a mere 36,419 views on Sony’s own platform, Crackle, we had to wonder, why would Sony Pictures Entertainment go to the expense of providing a Blu-Ray disc of the series to over 706,494 Wired subscribers?
That, it turns out, is a rather complicated question. Coma was originally produced by WIMO, in association with Anonymous Content, and Will Smith’s Overbrook Entertainment – as a film – meant to be viewed in seven installments on mobile phones. That was, until Creative Artists Agency paired the WIMO team, led by Drew Fitzgerald and Stefan Haller, with Sony Electronics. With input from media agency Universal McCann, Coma became a vehicle for marketing Sony Electronics’ high end Sony Vaio FW laptop.
Crackle, it turns out, was not involved in the Wired campaign at all. Which would explain why the reverse side of the Coma insert is an ad for Sony’s laptop, and not for Crackle’s other web series. The ad does however, provide a link back to Crackle, but you have to remove the disc in order to see it.
Will more web series be distributed in their entirety as films, via traditional physical mediums, like DVDs and Blu-Ray? We think so – in fact, Crackle’s soon to be released Angel of Death will be distributed on DVD in early 2009.
Tubefilter Asks You:
Do you think short form episodic web television will appeal to viewers via traditional distribution routes, like DVD and broadcast TV? Sound off below: