Vid-Biz: Get Ripped, Adobe, AOL

Get Ripped to Launch Wednesday; new series from 60Frames cost $20,000 per episode. (LA Times — story is more generally about SAG and web video)

Adobe to Add Interactivity to Flash Soon; more about mobile Flash in GigaOM’s interview with Adobe CTO Kevin Lynch. (GigaOM)

AOL Relaunching Video Portal; sounds like a refresh of UI, internal syndication, advertising and personalization. (Broadcasting & Cable)

Lehman Forecasts $100M in Olympics Online Ad Spend; $1.5 billion overall expected revenue. (paidContent)

NYTimes Reviewer Says Dr. Horrible Worse Than Legally Blonde the Musical: The Search for Elle Woods; c’mon, seriously?! (New York Times)

Dr. Horrible Online Again for Free

Like all good supervillains, Joss Whedon’s Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog has resurfaced, and is now available for free online over at Hulu. This is a bit of a surprise as Horrible was only supposed to be available for free online for a few days before vanishing and re-emerging as a paid download or DVD. At least this time around, the audience will earn Whedon a few bucks in ad revenue.

The entire series is presented as one movie, so you can watch the whole thing in one sitting. But you better be quick. Just like last time, Dr. Horrible will only be available on Hulu for a week for four months. Whedon even wrote the introductory blog post for the vid site:

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Dr. Horrible’s Opening Day Ups and Downs

Despite tentative assurances at last Thursday’s Q&A that the web hosts streaming Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog would be up to the challenge today, drhorrible.com has been crashing all morning, and server traffic has been slow at best. Per the Twitter of star Felicia Day: “Wow, Horrible is breaking all the internet. Their site, my site, their fan site, whedonesque…”

If you want to keep posted on the site’s ups and downs, downforjustmeoreveryone.com is a good place to start, but right now the only certain way to watch the musical spectacular is via a $3.99 iTunes season pass. Of course, this could change at any moment, so feel free to comment with updates if you catch them before we do. The one thing we know for sure at this point — any concerns we might have had about a web series of this nature building an audience seem pretty moot.

Dr. Horrible Goes Live, and More on Joss Whedon’s Evil Plans

Joss Whedon’s Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog goes live today (go here to buy it on iTunes) with the first of three all-singing, some-dancing installments, the way it was meant to be seen: on your computer monitors. But how was it on the big screen? I had a chance to see it (and review it) at last Thursday’s cast-and-crew screening, where it played beautifully — Nathan Fillion’s manly attributes and big musical numbers getting almost equal amounts of applause.


From left, writer Maurissa Tancharoen, Joss Whedon, Jed Whedon, Felicia Day and Nathan Fillion; and Neil Patrick Harris, back, in a hat. Photo by David Sarno, used with permission.

And afterwards, Whedon, stars Neil Patrick Harris, Nathan Fillion and Felicia Day, and co-writers Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen hung around to answer a few questions, mostly revolving around the difficulties of production when not working with a studio. With an estimated budget in the low six figures that came directly out of Whedon’s pocket (“I sold a lot of Girl Scout cookies,” said the man with two different TV series in syndication), the project’s pedigree makes claims to guerrilla filmmaking a bit hard to swallow. But everyone involved clearly relished the chance to participate in a project made under conditions Whedon defined as “street legal” — even if, in Whedon’s words, the hectic seven days of shooting “broke a few people.” Read More about Dr. Horrible Goes Live, and More on Joss Whedon’s Evil Plans

NTV Station Today: Dr. Horrible, Nas vs. Fox

Nas became a punching bag for Bill O’Reilly and the Fox News Channel after performing a concert at Virginia Tech last year. But rather than take it, the rapper aims his latest video at the “fair and balanced” news channel — and really, all media — for a ditty entitled “Sly Fox”.

And for all you Joss Whedon fans, we have an early review of Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog — no real spoilers, just lots of raving about the supervillain musical extravaganza. Check it out on NewTeeVee Station!

Whedon to Pioneer New Distribution Model

Joss Whedon’s upcoming writers’ strike-inspired web series, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, is the closest thing to a sure hit online, even if it is going to be a musical (hey, that’s just unusual — not bad!). Turns out Whedon has a pretty interesting plan for pleasing fans, making a big impact, and perhaps making a bit of money, too.

The plan (which was first posted as a comment on a fan site, I believe) is to release the three parts of the 42-minute project on July 15, July 17 and July 19 respectively, for free. But at midnight on July 20, “They will vanish into the night, like a phantom (but not THE Phantom – that’s still playing. Like, everywhere.),” as Whedon put it. After that, the whole thing will be available for purchase.

I like it! A way to have scarcity without signing some exclusive deal with a portal whose audience isn’t necessarily your fan base. A way to get everyone in the same place, buzzing about what you’re doing without depending on outside promotion. Hey, maybe it’s something only Whedon could do, but it’ll be exciting to watch it play out.

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