Monday, August 18, 2008

NBC Universal Launches Gemini Division, First Network Web Series

Today marks the premiere of Gemini Division, a sci-fi web-only series starring indie-flick hottie, Rosario Dawson (Sin City, Clerks II).

This bold move by NBC Universal could very well change the face of original programming as we know it. A recent Advertising Age article claims that this is "perhaps the most significant original programming ever developed by a broadcast network specifically for the web."

According to industry rags, "Gemini" will roll out as a 50-webisode series, with the first two segments premiering today on,, and, and will be featured on several video-on-demand platforms including Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Verizon FiOS, Dish Network, Amazon Unbox, and Microsoft's Xbox Live and Zune. Wow, that's an exhaustive list of partners, not to mention a number of top advertisers who have signed up, including Microsoft, Intel, and UPS.

It'll be interesting to see how this is received by the people who matter the most - the online audience and regular TV viewers. Supposedly, if viewers respond favorably to a given story line or character, the network will also be prepared to shoot ancillary footage and create social media spin-offs. They've apparently already released a series of blogs which you won't know until episode 30 are actually related to the show. Regardless, I for one intend on keeping close tabs on this endeavor, if not for anything else but to get up-close and personal with senorita Rosario.



Its so important that Gemini Division does well. It's the kind of innovative product that injects the interactivity of the internet into the traditional lean back viewing model of old media.

Its success would bring much needed attention to a groundswell of indie interactive web TV projects like ours.

One gripe though is geoblocking the show to the US, I think its a cop out, failing to fully embrace the tenets of operating on the internet by making it virally distributable and available worldwide.

Deleted: The Game

Christian said...

I couldn't agree more. IMOO, this type of interactive programming is the future - and the future is now.

As far as the cop out by not making this virally distributable, I agree, and YES it would not only have been a bold move to make this content portable and distributable, but it would've stacked the deck in NBC Universal's favor in terms of securing a high number of views, awareness and buzz.