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7 items from 2016

Inside ‘Hairspray Live’s’ Social Media Push

8 December 2016 5:38 PM, PST | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

It’s an hour before the live broadcast of NBC’s musical “Hairspray Live,” and the show-within-the show is going through last-minute rehearsals. Darren Criss, who’ll be serving as the night’s “multi-platform host,” is running up and down Baltimore (a.k.a. New York) Street on Universal’s famed backlot, practicing the opening that will kick off the evening’s events. Just down the street, director Kenny Leon can be heard giving the cast a last-minute pep talk: “We’re on sacred ground,” he tells them.

Parked next to the main production truck is a clone, another satellite truck that’s serving as mission control for the live production elements that will add bells and whistles to what viewers see at home. A bank of screens show images from the cameras set up in the four cities with viewing parties around the country — from Baltimore (naturally) to Atlanta, Philadelphia »

- Debra Birnbaum

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Revisiting the film of Stephen King's Cat's Eye

30 October 2016 11:01 AM, PDT | Den of Geek | See recent Den of Geek news »

Rebecca Lea Oct 31, 2016

Our lookback at the film adaptations of Stephen King's work lands on a gem: the anthology movie, Cat's Eye...

The film: The second of our young Drew Barrymore in Stephen King films double bill, Cat’s Eye is another of his anthology movies. The spine of the film is a tabby cat, accidentally driven first to New York City where he receives a message from a girl (Drew Barrymore) who asks the cat for help. Before he can find her, the cat is captured by Quitters, Inc., a company that helps people to quit smoking with threats of torture and violence on the family, as Dick Morrison (James Woods) finds out.

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From there, the cat travels to Atlantic City where he gets another message from the girl, »

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Full list of winners from the 2016 Creative Arts Emmy Awards

12 September 2016 8:46 AM, PDT | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

With the 2016 Primetime Emmy Awards set to take place this coming Sunday, September 18th, the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences has announced the winners of the Creative Arts Emmys over two nights this past weekend.

HBO’s epic fantasy series Game of Thrones was the bigger winner, scooping 16 wins across the two nights, followed by FX’s miniseries The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story with 12 awards.

Check out a full list of winners here via E!Online…

Outstanding Casting – Limited Series

The People v O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story (FX)

Outstanding Casting – Comedy

Veep (HBO)

Outstanding Casting – Drama

Game of Thrones (HBO)

Outstanding Hairstyling – Limited Series

The People v O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story (FX)

Outstanding Hairstyling – Single-Camera

Downton Abbey (PBS)

Outstanding Multiplatform Storytelling

Archer Scavenger Hunt (FX)

Outstanding Original Interactive Program

Henry (Oculus Platform)

Outstanding Social TV Experience

@midnight with Chris Hardwick (Comedy Central »

- Gary Collinson

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‘Archer,’ Chris Hardwick, Oculus Win Interactive Media Emmys

8 September 2016 7:45 AM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

FX’s “Archer” and Comedy Central’s “@Midnight” are among the juried Emmy winners for Outstanding Creative Achievement in Interactive Media, with three categories announced last night at the Interactive Media Peer Group (Impg) Nominee Reception and Celebration of Excellence. The juried awards will be presented during this year’s first Creative Arts Emmy Awards ceremony, taking place Saturday, Sept. 10 at Downtown Los Angeles’ Microsoft Theater.

This year’s juried winners for Outstanding Creative Achievement in Interactive Media include:

Multiplatform Storytelling

Archer Scavenger Hunt • FX Networks • FX Productions

Tim Farrell, Transmedia Lead

Mark Paterson, Transmedia Director

Bryan Fordney, Technical Director

Original Interactive Program

Henry • Oculus Platform • Oculus Story Studio

Oculus Story Studio

Social TV Experience

@midnight with Chris Hardwick • Comedy Central • Comedy Central, Funny or Die, Nerdist Industries, Serious Business, Aloha Productions, Garant Lennon Productions, Brillstein Entertainment Partners

Chris Hardwick, Executive Producer/Host

Jack Martin, Executive Producer

Joe Farrell, Executive Producer

Christopher D’Elia, Producer »

- Laura Prudom

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Live Musicals on TV Spark Social Media Frenzy

15 June 2016 10:30 AM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Fan favorites like “The Sound of Music,” “Grease” and “The Wiz” hit both stage and screen decades ago. Millions have committed every scene between Maria and the von Trapp family to memory and know every word exchanged between Danny Zuko and Sandy Olsson by heart. Recently, these musicals have sparked even heavier nostalgia in the form of must-see live TV events that audiences are flocking to in droves.

And the conversation about said shows extends beyond the small screen.

On any given live musical night, viewers congregate on social media, creating a phenomenon usually associated only with sports, political events and awards shows.

“Live musicals created an atmosphere where either you were participating and engaging with it while it’s happening or it’s over and it’s gone,” says Jason Klein, co-founder of ListenFirst Media, a company that analyzes online activity and provides a digital audience rating for all TV programs. “That’s what makes them a unique viewing experience that plays really well to social media: either you’re in or you’re out.”

This particular audience is all in. Case in point: The night “The Wiz Live!” aired on Dec. 3, NBC saw a digital audience rating increase of 40% across platforms that include Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, YouTube and even web searches. Out of 2.2 million engagements across digital and social platforms, 67% were taking place on Twitter — 1.6 million tweets in total.

While not on par with top awards shows like the Oscars and Grammys, which receive between 7 million and 8 million tweets, specials like “Grease Live!” and “The Wiz Live!” perform similarly with events like the Miss Universe Pageant, Golden Globes and Billboard Music Awards, far exceeding regular TV program episodes and even finales. For perspective, the day “The Blacklist” premiered, NBC saw a digital engagement increase of 35%, but only 9% of those interactions were on Twitter.

“Live television musicals are the ultimate live event,” says Cait Hood, head of broadcast partnerships at Twitter. “We grew up loving these storylines, having these favorite, iconic moments and memories around the shows that we can all relate to. I think that nostalgia compels people to really reference the throwbacks and engage with that live audience. And I think that’s why the live musicals have become so popular, specifically on Twitter.”

The importance of social media is not lost on the networks putting on these productions. As part of its digital marketing campaign, NBC has identified four target areas: tapping into nostalgia, building anticipation, influencer activation, and live engagement.

“It’s paramount,” says Rob Hayes, head of digital strategy at NBC. “As a broadcaster it’s much more gratifying marketing through these social media platforms than some of the traditional ways, because we’re really engaging with the fans. We get to create content for them.”

What may come across as spontaneous sharing of information leading up to the main event — actors posting photos from rehearsals on Twitter and Instagram, or candid behind the scenes moments on Snapchat and Facebook — is a well-crafted campaign that takes place across all social media platforms.

For “Grease Live!,” “we chose a very social cast, purposely, so we could leverage each one of their fan bases to create more awareness as well as more excitement and enthusiasm,” says Angela Courtin, chief marketing officer of Fox. “We had a lot of young cast who had a social media following, especially with the millennials audience, and these fans came to see what this was all about.”

The idea is that on the day of the performance the broadcast becomes a communal experience of massive proportions.

“When you’re doing live musicals, it’s walking a tightrope,” says Courtin. “So there’s the, ‘Oh my God, are they going to be able to pull it off?’ ”But in addition to the suspense of whether there will be technical glitches or someone will freeze on live TV, there is a constant flurry of content pushed out during the show for viewers to consume.

“You cannot underestimate the power of the network consistently live Tweeting and pushing meaningful content in real time,” Hood says.

If you’re lucky, a celebrity will come out to play. Chrissy Teigen and Anna Kendrick both expressed their enthusiasm during the broadcast of “Grease Live!” with Kendrick’s tweets reaching more than 33 million views.

“We didn’t pay them. We didn’t reach out to them, We certainly thanked them afterwards” Courtin says. “They just wanted to share their fandom with the rest of the world.”

And then, of course, there are the things you cannot change. As with any live broadcast there is an opportunity for endless snark — a sideshow that has become as fascinating as the broadcast itself.

“Twitter is a forum for self-expression, so people who are funny in real life, have an easy time showing that on Twitter,” Hood says. “You can’t stop that. You may as well embrace it.”


- Carita Rizzo

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NBC Launches ‘American Ninja Warrior’ Digital Series (Exclusive)

31 May 2016 9:02 AM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

NBC is introducing two new digital series that will take viewers behind the scenes on unscripted obstacle-course competition series “American Ninja Warrior.” The new series, “Crashing the Course” and “24/B4,” are set to premiere Tuesday on the NBC app,, and the “American Ninja Warrior” YouTube channel.

Weekly series “Crashing the Course” will explore how each obstacle is designed, constructed and tested, leading up to the moment when the first “American Ninja Warrior” competitor takes the course. Alex Weber of MTV’s “Greatest Party Story Ever” will host the series

Series “24/B4” will highlight one competitor each week. The series will explore the competitor’s personal life as well as his or her preparation for the show 24 hours the course run.

“We are really excited about the two digital series we’ve created for the upcoming season which allows fans to engage and share what we believe to be »

- Daniel Holloway

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'The Help' producer wraps survival drama 'Walking Out' starring Matt Bomer

2 February 2016 1:35 AM, PST | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: Matt Bomer, Bill Pullman, Josh Wiggins star in Walking Out; Salt boards international sales.

Production has wrapped in Montana on father-son survival drama Walking Out, starring Matt Bomer (Magic Mike Xxl), Bill Pullman (Independence Day) and Josh Wiggins (Max).

Written and directed by Alex and Andrew Smith, who teamed on Ryan Gosling sports drama The Slaughter Rule (2002) and Winter In The Blood (2010), in Walking Out Wiggins plays a city teen who travels to Montana to go hunting with his estranged father only for the strained trip to become a battle for survival when they encounter a grizzly bear.

Producers are Brunson Green of Harbinger Pictures and Laura Ivey of Co-Op Entertainment, with cooperation from the State of Montana’s Big Sky Film Grant. The Salt Company is handling international sales and will introduce the project at the upcoming Efm.

Director of photography is Todd McMullen (The Leftovers, Friday Night Lights), editor is Michael Taylor (Elvis & Nixon »

- (Andreas Wiseman)

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7 items from 2016, Inc. takes no responsibility for the content or accuracy of the above news articles, Tweets, or blog posts. This content is published for the entertainment of our users only. The news articles, Tweets, and blog posts do not represent IMDb's opinions nor can we guarantee that the reporting therein is completely factual. Please visit the source responsible for the item in question to report any concerns you may have regarding content or accuracy.

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