AMPAS Premieres First Digital Series “Academy Originals” (Updated)

/ May 19, 2014


Certainly a sign of the times and the momentum of digital entertainment when old guard Hollywood organization The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences (AMPAS) announces its first digital series “Academy Originals.”

The series, which premiered on the Oscars site and YouTube and is produced in-house by the Academy, “examines everything from the creative process, to the moments that changed the course of filmmaking, to the artists who are charting its future.” In the first three episodes mainstream names like Patton Oswalt, and screenwriter, director Tina Gordon (“Drumline”) are featured.

Aiming to incorporate the expertise and cache of its 6000 members, “Academy Originals” will surface the oral stories and behind the scenes experiences that aren’t already being covered. Other talent said to be featured in upcoming episodes include prolific producer Kathleen Kennedy (“Lincoln”, “Jurassic Park”, “E.T”), Paul Haggis (“Crash”, “Million Dollar Baby”), and writer/director Mike White (“School of Rock”, “Nacho Libre”).’

“Our goal is to inspire and educate people about movies through unique content that reflects the Academy – an organization whose membership represents the world’s most talented artists and creators,” says Josh Spector, the Academy’s managing director of digital media and marketing.

AMPAS has committed to release episodes weekly on Mondays “for the foreseeable future,” a rep for AMPAS tells me.

However, in watching the first three episodes, it seems that “Creative Spark” and “Let’s Go to the Movies with Patton Oswalt” could easily be spun into their own series if viewership catches.

Though the Academy wouldn’t confirm future plans for digital programming, “We’re always looking at different platforms and exploring new ways to tell interesting stories. We have close relationships with all the major tech/media companies and love working with them in innovative ways around the Oscars and our year-round initiatives,” according to Spector.

Check out one of the “Academy Originals” episodes here:

*this post was updated to include comments from AMPAS’ managing director of digital media and marketing, Josh Spector.

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