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March 16, 2007

Michael Eisner is moving into the Video 2.0 space. His new production company is Vuguru, an indie studio that will produce and distribute original content for the Internet. This is yet another proof point that the Internet is a legitimate and rapidly growing platform for entertainment.

“In the past few years, the development of exciting and innovative digital media platforms and technologies has outpaced the creation of truly great content,” said Michael Eisner. “Vuguru will produce and showcase original and third party content in all genres and formats to meet the new demands of the evolving media landscape.”

I’m interested to see what Eisner does with Vuguru. His first series is called Prom Queen, scheduled to run for 80 episodes, 90 seconds each, starting April 2nd. It’s by the creators of Sam Has 7 Friends. Based on the trailer, it looks like a dark comedy and I think it has the potential to grab an audience, especially the teens. However, I don’t see anything that makes me think it’s interactive with its viewers, which is a strong differentiator for Internet series compared to other mediums.


This whole Eisner thing is just another example of traditional studio/Hollywood types migrating to the Internet. Some people don’t like this migration, because they want the Internet to be a place free of any corporate influence. They fear the money, power, and formulaic storylines of studios. I actually think it’s a good thing though. The reality is, if bigger players move in, they will help grow the online video category and drive more viewers to the web, which ultimately benefits the independent filmmaker. The fact that the Sam Has 7 Friends creators are working with Eisner is good news and signals an opportunity for other web-distributed productions.

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