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Interview: Justus Verkerk: How Paul Verhoeven’s user-generated film went stellar

At MIPCOM 2011, FCCE unveiled UGC project the "Entertainment Experience". Today, "Tricked", its first film, is already an award-winner

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Tricked poster

Last April at MIPTV, user generated multi-platform project the Entertainment Experience won the International Digital Emmy Award in the “Digital Program – Non-Fiction” category. Launched by FCCE, the project has now given birth to Tricked, a film directed by Paul Verhoeven, based on crowdsourced scripts. MIPBlog caught up with FCCE CCO Justus Verkerk to discuss the project’s growing success, and possible next steps.

 


MIPBlog: What do you think impressed the Emmy judges most about the Entertainment Experience?

Justus Verkerk: The Entertainment Experience is a ground-breaking concept that has never been done on such a scale before. We involved a very large community (more than 35 000 people) into helping a major movie director to make the first user-generated film. We showed that with the engagement of the public through a cross media community platform, we created a talent search, a talent development tool and a brilliant film, called Tricked, at the same time.

As The Hollywood Reporter put it: “Tricked (Entertainment Experience) is blazing a trail towards what could be a major advance in filmmaking and creativity”.

 


> How is the film faring in terms of international sales?

The film has been sold so far to the United States, France, Germany, South Korea and Japan, and will be screened during the Dutch Film Festival in September 2013. The Entertainment Experience concept will be launched this year in many territories with other directors. 

 


> What has Paul Verhoeven’s number one feedback been from working on the film? Will he do this sort of thing again?

Paul stated in Rome during the international launch: “I learned more in the past 9 months than in 25 years of Hollywood”.

In an interview with Le Monde, Verhoeven added: “I found it fascinating to work with hundreds of different scripts, written by non-professionals, and see what would happen. I was really curious to discover what the result would be. Would we have enough scenes, dialogues, plot twists to actually make a feature film? The answer was yes! In the first place, I thought that I would only receive two or three good scripts from the public and that we could mix them together to make a good one. But we received hundreds of excellent submissions. In the end we made Tricked, a film about the acceptance of immorality and sexual promiscuity, in which characters lives are based on lies”.

Paul never does something twice… so now we have to come up with something new to interest him.

 

> What’s next? A crowdsourced TV series, perhaps?

Indeed, we’ve developed a user-generated and crowdsourced crime series: Catch the Killer.

 

> What makes crowdsourced entertainment better/more interesting than the usual kind? Do you think it’s here to stay?

We strongly believe that crowdsourced entertainment is a translation of the new “customer-centric economy”. Traditional broadcasters and producers should realise they are a part of the “support economy”, serving clients with context and content. They should transform and adapt to the needs of communities (whatever, whenever, wherever and through a device of their choice). It is certainly here to stay, and will in time be as common as customised websites. All our other concepts: The Party Project, Magic Sensation, Advertising Lab and Lifestyle Scenarios are based on this principle.

 

> How did revealing the Entertainment Experience at MIPCOM 2011, with Paul Verhoeven (interview below), contribute to its current success?

At that time, nobody believed that we would succeed in producing a movie like that. But we did. And when we contacted people again a couple of years later, a lot of them remembered us, be it for the location, the project… or the free drinks!

 

 


Founded in 2005 in Amsterdam, FCCE is an international distribution and consultancy company dedicated to providing movie-related content services, programming and successful international formats.

Join more trailblazing entertainment companies at MIPCOM 2013: register here by July 3 and save 30%!

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