Ed Ulbrich, the EVP/President Commercial Division, Digital Domain, held a seminar this morning at the Boards Summit Europe. With the case study of Tron he showed us that one can make lemonade out of writers strikes (as they dug through the dusty movie-script vaults to find the Tron gem), and that the way forward is creating a multi-faceted world, which in turn creates new opportunities for marketers. All these ideas they learned from Tron prompted the company to launch a sister entity, Mothership, focused on the transmedia opportunity.
Ed: "This was birthed from the commercial division of Digital Domain. "
"How many of you have seen that? Do you know what that is? A lot of people believe it's a trailer for a movie. But it's not. There's a lot of work that's been done about two and a half years ago. This was done before there was a movie, before the game - what you just looked at was a protype of an entertainment property."
The way movies usually are created is by a script traversing the ladder of approval, but with this visual feast Digital Domain had something to show the game creators, the movie creators, the amusement park designers and each audience in turn could take from it a film, a game, a ride.
"That's why I'm saying Tron is not a movie, because that's not a movie. It's the starting point of everything."
Watch as Ed describes this here. Sorry about the sound my new mike wasn't co-operating with me. Actually, don't. Not only is the sound rubbish, but there's bits there that shouldn't be broadcast like this. I'll sort a bit of a transcript of his major points later.
When the Tron Legacy prototype leaked out on the web ("leaked as in was placed front and center on Flynnlives.com), Tron fans were immediately salivating at the images and hotly debating what would come of it. Would the film be any good? Is there a game coming? Can I make a mashup of this to Michael Jacksons "Beat it" and it'll sync beautifully?. Yes to all of the above.