For NBC’s 2010 pilot launch of “The Event,” we tapped directly into the show’s main premise of conspiracies and took aim at the emotional core of a multicultural audience already predisposed to government mistrust. We set about accomplishing this by building a series of events around “The Event;” first developing our own mythological back story to the Event's conspiracy, then creating a "citizens-type advocacy group" to begin unveiling it. From there, we utilized multiple platforms to initially tease, then amplify and reveal as the show's launch date approached.
DIGITAL BILLBOARD/ WILD POSTINGS
Sponsored by our "advocacy group," we tap into one's emotional response towards injustice and drive viewers online to WeDemandTheTruth.org
We created a URL for a grassroots organization called WeDemandTheTruth.Org. It's purpose? To expose U.S. government conspiracies while protecting and defending the freedoms of it's citizens. This most recent conspiracy, surrounding the possible existence of a secret, Abu Ghraib type detainment center in Alaska.
Written as a mix of documented fact and hearsay, the content followed the exact format structure of other grassroots conspiracy sites, hyperlinking key words to Wikipedia and published articles to give the site an air of legitimacy.
AUGMENTED REALITY PROMOTIONAL STUNT
We "leak" an app to influencers that uses geo-tracking, geo-caching, and augmented reality to drop cryptic messages around the country, eluding to a government conspiracy about an impending event. Users follow GPS coordinates to "dropzones" where they switch to video and search for messages, in real time, through the screen.
"THE EVENT" MOBILE APP SUITE"
This suite of smartphone applications links episode content, providing utility, information and entertainment. Once activated, the home screen would begin counting down the days/ hours/ minutes until "The Event."
Utilizing touch-screen technology, upon launch, the user would be directed to hold their thumb against the screen, allowing for "satellite uplink" and "Code Level Clearance." Once unlocked, the viewer would be treated to blacked-out documents eluding to an unraveling situation that would be unveiled during the pilot episode.
Post pilot, it's continued use would allow viewers to work through the app, unlocking episode recaps, character bios, behind-the-scenes interviews, and short clips of future episodes not released to the web.
ADOBE AIR: "Operation Horizon"
Adobe Integrated Runtime (AIR), is a cross-platform runtime environment developed by Adobe Systems for building rich internet applications that can be deployed on desktops. Using the built-in webcam and facial recognition software, the viewer is granted "Code Level Clearance." Once unlocked, the viewer would be treated to previews, blacked-out documents and video surveillance profiling character dossiers. Links to Twitter and Facebook allow for simultaneous engagement in social networks while exploring content.
3-D PROJECTION MAPPING: "The Event Vortex"
We recreate the "thermite vortex" (featured in the trailers) as a 3-D projection against a building at night. The wind speed slowly builds as litter, vegetation, birds, concrete, and even furniture are ripped from the environment and sucked into the core — revealing the debuting pilot's time and network.
Writer: ACD/Writer Jason Lambert