By Evan DeSimone
“Star Trek” alum and social media star George Takei today announced plans to release his documentary series “Allegiance: Trek to Broadway” exclusively on his popular Facebook page.
The 10-episode series will chronicle the page-to-stage development of Takei’s upcoming Broadway musical “Allegiance,” which tells the story of a Japanese-American family subjected to imprisonment in an American internment camp during World War II. The musical will begin previews at the Longacre Theatre on Oct. 6, prior to a scheduled Nov. 8 opening
The first episode is available today. Two new episodes will premiere each month.
With his large following Facebook is a logical choice for Takei, whose witty, socially conscious posts on the platform have already turned the sci-fi star into a social media icon. Likewise Takei is a logical choice for Facebook. Despite making large gains in video views since launching its native player, Facebook still lags behind YouTube in the development of original and user-generated video content ecosystem. While brands and content creators have dabbled in releasing content directly on Facebook, most of those releases have been either redistributions of existing content or have been backed up by secondary platforms after a sampling period.
Takei, who is best known for his role as Hikaru Sulu on the original “Star Trek” series, has experienced a resurgence in recent years as a result of his popular social media brand. He previously created two seasons of the bi-weekly digital series “Takei’s Take,” made in partnership with Fullscreen and AARP. It was released on YouTube, where Takei has 102k followers, a respectable number but a far cry from his 8.8 million Facebook fans.