The fast growing collection of online original series and movies is about to grow a little more with the addition of a new series from the Midwest.The new science fiction web series "Reality on Demand" has released an extended trailer and is in the late stages of post-production, nearing a premiere. A mix of experienced actors with relative unknowns will help bring to life this new, independent TV series that follows four strangers trapped in an advanced virtual reality game world composed of their favorite TV shows and movies.
“We are proud to release this extended trailer. We have an extremely talented cast. Some may be familiar to those who follow indie filmmaking in Indiana and Kentucky, but soon the whole world will get to know these talented actors and the characters they portray,” said series creator & director Marx Hernandez Pyle. “If there is one thing I've learned in all of my interviews with web series creators, it is that you have to have a talented cast to bring a good script to life. I'm very happy with the talent we've found.”
Reality On Demand follows four strangers who playtest a highly advanced virtual reality game that puts them into their favorite TV shows and movies. But when they become trapped, a fun adventure takes a dangerous turn where cancellation means death.
Pyle first announced the series on his popular column, The IndieNet and Beyond, on the website ScifiPulse. “Reality On Demand has action, laughs, special effects, and... a few zombies. And everyone knows you can't have a web series without zombies,” said Pyle tongue-in-cheek. “We like to think it is a nice blend of comedy and drama. Once you are done watching season one, you'll keep wanting to follow the adventures of these characters and learn more about this crazy virtual world that is a blend of television and film. Will these very different strangers be able to work together to survive this dangerous game? And what secrets are waiting to be revealed?”
Julie Hernandez Seaton (Daylight) stars as Courtney Thompson, a struggling writer with a secret. Kevin Roach stars as Nick Jacobs, an uber-geek computer programmer, who is obsessed with TV and movies. Kathlin Finn (Reality) stars as Kelli Hartz, a wannabe celebrity looking for her big break. And Aric Dylon Stanish (Silence of the Belle) stars as Trevor Clay, a marine veteran who is focused on winning.
Actor Christopher P. Tyner stars as the Reality On Demand host, Aiden Kingston. Indianapolis actor and filmmaker Jim Dougherty (Scalene, Leach, Fire From Below) stars as Robby, a TV character a monster hunter who helps the trapped playtesters. And actor Louie Lawless, who has acted in over 100 films, stars as the villain, Pastor Jim.
Actors Grant Niezgodski (Reality), Benjamin Crockett, Sidney Shripka (Hell Is Full), and many others portray fictional characters in the game. Many viewers will recognize the characters that inspired them.
Pyle, a Vancouver Film School graduate, has also gathered together talent behind the camera with graduates from New York Film Academy, Full Sail University, Ivy Tech and University of Evansville. While in Vancouver, Pyle interviewed Damian Kindler (Stargate SG-1) about the then upcoming web series, Sanctuary.
Kindler's excitement of the future of web series inspired Pyle to go home that evening and write outlines for three pilots intended to be web series. Reality On Demand is one of those. “Reality On Demand was born after that interview. I wrote the outline to a TV pilot and plotted out a season arc. After returning to the United States and filming Silence of the Belle, I dusted off the paperwork and modified the story for a more modest budget. I quickly wrote the new one hour pilot and then broke it into smaller episodes for a web series,” explained Pyle. “Julie (who also stars in the show) came on board to help add the final touches to the characters and dialogue, making the script even stronger. I'm very proud of the script and excited to show the world what we made.”
Alien Jungle Bug Productions is just warming up. Already, they are writing season two for Reality On Demand, plus they will co-produce another web series slated for filming in early 2012. They are also more quietly working on a documentary and developing a feature film. But Pyle is quick to point out that he has many more stories to tell in the setting of Reality On Demand, with an action packed three seasons planned and a willingness to do more if viewers want more.
“Fans of scifi and fantasy get so frustrated when networks cancel their shows. The great thing about the Internet as a distribution window, is that the fans can support their favorite shows and make sure they don't get canceled before their time, like what happened to genre fan favorites like Firefly, Farscape, Jericho and, sadly, so many more,” Pyle explained. “It's not up to ratings or large networks to decide a web television series' fate. It's up to the fans, which is one reason web television is growing at light speed. They can show their support by watching and sharing, plus buying DVDs and other merchandise. This new method of reaching audiences is showing great success with some shows getting millions more viewers than traditional network television.
And creators are finding it's becoming easier and easier to make a profit and grow their fan base, while retaining control of their creations.” So what kind of shows do these Reality On Demand characters jump into? “We have nods to many shows in the series. I don't want to give away too much, but if you are a fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Supernatural, then you'll want to check out season one. But there are nods to many more shows than just those two,” hinted Pyle. “I've been interviewing web series creators since 2007 and have seen the amazing growth in what many call 'independent television' and I'm excited to finally develop one.”
Marx is a member of the International Academy of Web Television and Society of American Fight Directors. He also writes a popular column about web series, The IndieNet and Beyond, for the news entertainment website ScifiPulse.