Thursday, April 16, 2009

Social Psycho: a fascinating experiment

I was giving a presentation a couple of weeks back talkin' bout entertainment, when a lad at the back made the comment 'apart from Tourism Queensland, which was largely international in terms of entrants, Australian's don't seem to have much of an appetite for getting involved in user generated content campaigns'.

There's plenty of evidence to the contrary. In other words, Australians are watching stuff, making their own, and talking about it. This can only mean that clients and agencies are failing to ignite interest from audiences.

I've said this before, I think there is a genuine interest in experimentation, but a lack of creativity, bravery and importantly an effort to understand the relationship between people and the environment. This has got us stuck in a rut where Doritos, Subway, Toshiba, Samboy and Nissan are the norm, and Six Beers of Separation is the exception (it's early days so we haven't yet seen them really take off but it's a much more interesting concept).

But here's one I'm really excited about. I'm completely intrigued, involved and plotting my part in this new creative commons project. It's called Social Psycho and in truth, there is not a brand in sight.

It's the brainchild of one Marcus Brown from Munich - storyteller, stirrer and tweet reader.

As the video above suggests, Marcus has unearthed a cracking premise:

What would happen when someone who had access to the personal data of hundreds or thousands of people completely lost it and became unhinged? What would happen if that said person was extremely web savvy, had accounts of facebook, twitter, friendfeed, blogs and knew their way around Google maps etc.?

Social Psycho is a work of fiction that intends to build on this terrifying idea and I'm inviting you to get involved. It's my new project. Although I will be mainly writing and developing the main character of the story, you are invited to develop sub-plots and characters in order to build stories of your own."

Marcus has set up a Google group and is inviting us to take on a character or help develop the story in whatever way we like - via blogs, videos, twitter etc. There are already some curious discussions and sinister ideas bubbling away on his murderous stove.

It's a project created by Marcus, with our help, and all for the princely sum of time and occupied minds.

Get involved. Experiment. At your peril.

And brands, take note.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Six Beers of Separation launches on Youtube

I wrote about this a while back, but the Tooheys Six Beers of Separation series is now up and running on Youtube.

Full episodes are coming soon, but check out the trailer below - if it doesn't make you thirsty, the top notch production values and a strong premise suggest it will be an interesting watch.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Coraline: building a beautiful story

Have a look at this beautiful looking film Coraline. Directed by Henry Selick, and based on the novel by Neil Gaiman, Coraline was released in February in the US. 

It's the first feature from animation studio Laika. The film looks to be a masterpiece of stopmotion animation - everything you see on screen has actually been handcrafted.

Laika is Phil Knight's post Nike plaything (he bought Will Vinton Animation Studios and renamed it Laika) and he tasked Wieden + Kennedy with marketing the company's first feature.

The campaign looks to have been both well crafted and respectful of its audience (both in terms of the marketing and the film itself).

One of the really cool things they did was send out 50 one off boxes to some key bloggers. Each of the boxes was handmade, totally unique and contained bits and pieces from the set. Who wouldn't want to get their hands on one?

You can read about the W+K story here and check out some of the artwork, or watch a delightful little trailer they've produced for the campaign.

HT @carlmoggy