What Will the Upfronts Bring for Web Video?

The upfronts kick off this week. It’s a time when the big broadcast TV networks announce their fall schedules (and get advertisers to pony up for them in advance). While fans await the fate of their favorite programs (looks like Dollhouse will be back while Terminator will not), we wonder what role — if any — web video will have during these network showcases and for shows debuting next season.

Last year, NBC (s GE) embraced digital programming by including a trio of web shows as part of its fall schedule: the Rosario Dawson-starrer Gemini Division, the controversial Fears, Secrets and Desires, and Salon Confessions. Gemini never really took off, Fears changed its name and its focus, possibly after catching the ire of the PostSecret fan base, and Salon has yet to air.

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Can EQAL Make CBS’ Harper’s Island a Hit Online?

The partnership between EQAL and CBS is starting to bear fruit, as the two media companies announced their new upcoming multi-platform “social show,” Harper’s Island. From the press release:

HARPER’S ISLAND is about a group of family and friends who travel to a secluded island for a destination wedding. They’ve come to laugh… to love… and, though they don’t know it… to die. As the wedding festivities begin, friendships are tested and secrets exposed as a murderer claims victims, one by one, transforming the wedding week of fun and celebration into a terrifying struggle for survival. In every episode, someone is killed and every person is a suspect, from the wedding party to the island locals. By the end of the 13 episodes, all questions will be answered, the killer will be revealed and only a few will survive.

Dunh-Dunh-DUNH!

CBS is using EQAL’s technology and video experience (lonelygirl15, KateModern) to develop the Harper’s Globe web site that will feature original online episodes that will intertwine with the TV component. The online part of the show will debut on March 18, weeks before the show debuts on TV on April 9, and the old and newteevee shows will coexist throughout the show’s weekly run, which will conclude on July 2.

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