Sanctuary interview with Martin Wood

And the Banff hits keep on coming … my interview with Sanctuary executive producer/director Martin Wood is now up on Blogcritics. The TV version of that formerly web-based series will premiere on Sci Fi in the US, TMN/Movie Central in Canada, and ITV in the UK in early October.

  • Sanctuary Leaps From Net To Network
    “When you’re that far in front of the wave, you’re sitting on the foaming edge of it. Everybody looks at you and says ‘ok, how are you doing this?’ And you have to turn to them and say ‘not very well, but we have an idea.'” Read more.

A quote that didn’t make it in the article but that kind of sums it up is when I asked him what the challenges are in the transition from web to television and he said: “The challenge is in staying on the web.” Quarterlife, for example, may have been seen as a failure as a TV show, but Wood’s opinion is that no one’s found true success (as in, financial success) as a high quality web-based series.

Some of what Wood says reminds me of part of my interview with Gregg Spiridellis, the JibJab guy, that didn’t make it into that article:

I think most people appreciate the fact that if you want to produce high quality original programming there’s a cost associated with it and advertising doesn’t support original programming online.

That Spiridellis interview occurred soon after the writers’ strike was resolved, so I asked him if he’d been watching those events, since it brought out stories of writers as entrepreneurs, wanting to take away control from the studios:

I think they were great stories. I mean you heard about writers gathering together to go raise VC (venture capital) money. If that happened it would have been a good indication that we were approaching a bubble, you know, the end of the bubble is about to pop. So I was kind of glad to see all that calm down, because it’s really complex. We find television’s a different medium. It’s a different kind of storytelling on the web, it’s a whole different perspective, and while someone may be an awesome sitcom writer, they may not know how to tell a story in 30 seconds, they don’t have the experience doing it. I think there’s a lot of opportunity to bring talent from TV to the web but we’re looking more for new talent, people who grew up on the medium. That’s a better place to mine for content that’s appropriate for the medium.

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