NEW YORK--Marshall Herskovitz, co-creator of the upcoming Web series Quarterlife, calls his decision to distribute the show on MySpace.com a "deal with the devil."
At a Thursday screening of the first six eight-minute episodes of the show as part of the CMJ Music Marathon and film festival, Herskovitz--best known as one half of the team that created the critically acclaimed TV series Thirtysomething and My So-Called Life--emphasized his aim to bring creativity to the world of professional online video.
"What I'm seeing on the Internet right now is really boring, and I think these big companies are missing it in a big way," he explained in a question-and-answer session following the screening. "All these new things, Hulu and even Joost, they're creating these platforms as though that's the goal. But they're not creating interesting programming. They're reusing content from television."
He continued: "There aren't any very good ideas coming out of it, and I haven't seen anything that really interests me."
Then, according to Herskovitz, there's the YouTube problem.
"People are quite fascinated by user-generated content on the Internet right now, and I'm not against that. And we want that on our site. But I believe that user-generated on the Internet, just like reality shows on television, are not completely satisfactory," he asserted. "There are reasons why we've had classical storytelling for 2,500 years, and across so many cultures. And there are reasons why we've had a film grammar for the past 100 years about how we shoot a film, and there's a place for that."
Which is why he and Zwick saw a window of opportunity for Quarterlife, a series about a half-dozen 20-somethings working in "creative" industries like acting, writing and filmmaking. Divided into eight-minute episodes, the Web series will be the center of a planned social network for fans as well as young creative people in general.
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