Private Beta Begins of "Sims" Creator Will Wright's Interactive TV Series for Current TV

Last month (see the article published on, March 31st), [itvt] reported that "The Sims" and "SimCity" creator, Will Wright, is teaming with Current TV and with former Spike TV president, Albie Hecht, on an interactive TV series with the working title, "The Creation Project," that will invite viewers to create and vote on storylines, characters and all its other elements, and that will employ an online and mobile application, dubbed Storymaker," which will allow viewers to quickly turn their ideas into storyboards, using their own uploaded images, or a collection of pre-existing images. The project has now launched a private beta, and has sent participants the following email, which provides a little more information on how it will work in its early stages:

Welcome to our grand experiment, Current TV's 'The Creation Project.' Ever want to create your own TV? Or even cast the characters? Have you ever yelled at your TV, wishing your favorite show followed your direction instead? Well, now you can! Together we will re-invent TV storytelling and production. This new type of TV production will be collaboration between us, the TV production team, and you, the Web story community. You, the community will use our Web site to create a branching tree of possibilities for each episode. Then, explore, discuss and vote for the best plotline from this pool of ideas. We will then shoot this plotline as our pilot!

Here are some basic deal points…We're developing the pilot for a half-hour, weekly show. The network is Current TV, which is available on most cable and dish networks. It's going to have sponsors so we'd like the community to come up with innovative ways to really integrate them into the show. Since it's experimental, we don't have all the answers on how this is going to work. We're expecting the community to help us figure out the best way to bring this show to life. We don't have a huge budget, some of our choices will be limited.

Thinking about these parameters, we'd like to get your input on a few things to get us rolling. We'd like to engage you, the beta community, in the development of the show concept. We're posting four different treatments for the TV show and we'd like you to discuss and debate the merits of each one, then vote on the one you'd like us to pilot. Or, if you have better treatment ideas that we should consider, then we'd like to hear them.

After that, we'll develop the idea more fully including the genre (tone) character bibles, location, production design and sponsor integration. Then, finally, you will use our Storymaker to create the pilot story. That's the nuts and bolts of the project. Welcome! We are happy to have you aboard. We hope you will participate actively, on time, and respectful of our mutual roles.

You will receive an email shortly with instructions on how to login to our beta site. This will be our temporary home as we're building out the final site.

Looking forward to an exciting and innovative collaboration. We promise to make every effort to make your TV show come alive!

-Will Wright
-Albie Hecht
-David Cohn

Executive Producers

Another communication from the project adds some more detail: "For the episode plots we will have a Web site where viewers can submit story ideas on the site for several days. Then everyone explores, and discusses the web of submitted plots and then votes for what they think is the best plotline. The winning plotline is given to our guerilla film team to produce in 2-3 weeks, then it goes to air on Current TV." (H/t Frisky Mongoose and Mega65ums.)

North America