Sony’s Crackle.com announced its fall lineup today and as expected, the Jon Heder lead zombie comedy Woke Up Dead is the headlining web series in the bunch. The online network is known for rolling out new 13-week seasons four times a year, and this new slate has just three new original series in it. The other two newcomers, Groundlings comedy Hardline: Inside the Idaho Sex Cult and Barry Sonnenfeld’s The Esquire Digital Man join the weekly returning series Anytime with Bob Kushell, Penn Says and My Long Distance Relationship.
The most touted is clearly Woke Up Dead from web vets Electric Farm Entertainment (Gemini Division, Afterworld, Valemont), which first popped up in development last summer. After finally lensing earlier this summer, the series calls itself a “re-imagining of the zombie mythology” with Jon Heder (Napoleon Dynamite) plays a USC college student thrust into a world of zombie powers after accidentally dying and waking up, well, dead. Expectations are high for this one with co-starring comedians Josh Gad, Krysten Ritter, Wayne Knight and Jean Smart rounding out the cast.
We’ll have a more in-depth look at Woke Up Dead coming soon from our on-set visit with the producers, Stan Rogow and Brent Friedman and stars of the series before it premieres on October 5.
Hardline, which debuted today from the SNL feeder improv troupe The Groundlings, looks to be a new mockumentary stab at 60 Minutes. Or, what The Onion News Network did for cable news, this is hoping to do for news magazine shows. And film director Barry Sonnefeld (The Addams Family, Men in Black) felt like extending his Esquire magazine column into a video series, with The Esquire Digital Man which premieres Friday September 18. This one’s getting the Friday slot on the network, with new episodes every other week for a year, totaling 24 episodes.
As for The Bannen Way, the other highly anticipated series in the works at Crackle, we hear it has been pushed to a possible January 2010 debut, with production starting later this month.