Continuing to experiment in the Web-TV series space, NBC Universal has launched another original Internet/digital series. This one is with telecommunications giant AT&T, aptly titled "Dial *."
The new series centers around a struggling young actress Celia (Audra Griffis) whose life in Los Angeles changes drastically when TV actress AnnaLynne McCord's ("90201") mobile phone lands at her feet, subsequently opening doors to Hollywood in ways she hadn't expected.
NBC Universal developed the series along with AT&T's Group M media agency, MEC Global, and its division MEC Entertainment.
"Dial *" is a 10-episode series that will be available across many NBC Universal and AT&T digital platforms: out-of-home and broadcast platforms, video-on-demand, and and electronic sell-through.
NBC has been more active than its network rivals in producing Web-series -- about a half-dozen or so have already run. At any given time, NBC will have two Web series on the air. An influential piece of a show's viewing -- around 30% -- comes from VOD airings of the series.
"VOD is a huge platform for us," says Cameron Death, vice president of NBC Universal Digital Studio. "We are seeing a lot of engagement and success."
Earlier, NBC announced it was renewing another show, "In Gayle We Trust," in which American Family Insurance has been a sponsor. This is the first time NBC has renewed a Web-series. "Gayle" debuted in September 2009 and like "Dial*" was developed with Group M agency Mindshare Entertainment. It is also a 10-episode series.
The mobile phone storyline will help highlight the AT&T brand in the "Dial*" series. Chris Schembri, vice president of media sales for AT&T, stated: "'Dial *' is an exciting way to engage consumers with the AT&T brand, while showcasing the technology we deliver to enrich daily life experiences..."
HollywoodLife.com, a digital destination about all things entertainment and celebrity, will also be an integrated brand partner with the series.