Archive for April 17th, 2007

Funny or Die

17th April 2007 by Maura McHugh

Via The Hollywood Reporter comes the news that Will Ferrell and Adam McKay’s production company, Gary Sanchez Prods., has launched a new comedy video web site,

The site was launched last week, and the first featured two-minute comedy skit called “The Landlord”, which stars Will Ferrell, Adam McKay, and McKay’s toddler daughter, has garnered over 1.5 million page views.

FunnyOrDie also features user-generated comedy videos, allowing anyone to upload their clips. But unlike YouTube and other popular user-generated sites, the viewers’ ratings for the videos determine their fate — thus the name of the site — with only the highly rated staying on. Those with negative reviews are banished to the “Crypt” section of the site.

Those of you with genuinely funny videos should consider this as an excellent opportunity to pitch your material to a tough crowd.

BBC past to go online

17th April 2007 by Maura McHugh

The Guardian reports that the BBC is going to release nearly a million hours of programming from its vast broadcasting archive for online browsing.

The project is already under trial with 20,000 users, and the BBC hopes it will be available to the British public by 2008. The company has to clear a lot of copyrighted material, as well as contact actors, agents, composers and presenters, and this is a time-consuming process.

The BBC also plans to make a huge amount of supporting material available, including scripts, programme notes and letters relating to shows. If it can secure permission to use them, they will make up a huge database of documents that viewers can search easily and quickly.

Paperwork the BBC hopes to place online includes a signed expenses form Attenborough sent when he was filming in Indonesia: dated 10 August 1954, it requests tropical clothing.

The BBC also has letters from Attenborough, sent care of the British embassy in Jakarta, telling BBC bosses about his first impressions of the country.

The corporation has been planning to exploit its valuable archive for some time. New technology means it is far cheaper to store and distribute video and audio streams, and the growth of broadband has boosted demand for high-quality content.