Microsoft Enters the Documentary Business on Xbox Video - The UpStream

Microsoft Enters the Documentary Business on Xbox Video

posted Friday Dec 20, 2013 by Scott Ertz

Microsoft Enters the Documentary Business on Xbox Video

When Microsoft made clear its intentions for original programming in 2014, everyone knew it would not be long before we would hear details about some of this programming. This week, Microsoft made good on those desires, announcing a new original documentary series exclusive to the Xbox platform.

The series will be produced by two-time Academy Award-winning producer Simon Chinn and Emmy-winning producer Jonathan Chinn. Simon Chinn described the project saying,

Our collaboration with Xbox offers an unparalleled opportunity to make a unique series of films around the extraordinary events and characters that have given rise to the digital age.

Jonathan Chinn added,

Our goal is to produce a series of compelling and entertaining docs which will deploy all the narrative techniques of Simon's and my previous work. It's particularly exciting to be partnering with filmmakers like Zak Penn who come to this process from other filmmaking disciplines and who will bring their own distinctive creative vision to this.

To ensure the gaming community will buy into the series, the first documentary in the line will be about the spectacular failure that was Atari and E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, the game that ended it all. If this premise sounds familiar, you're right - this is the documentary of the excavation I wrote about in June, which will unearth what some believe is millions of copies of the disaster game.

In addition to the excavation, the film will feature all of the urban legends that have sprung up about the sudden and silent shutdown of the videogame company, along with the path that led up to the middle of the night burial of whatever is in the cement-covered Atari landfill. It will also highlight the ups and downs of the company that brought videogames into the modern common culture and the events that ultimately closed the doors.

In addition to this announced film, the series will feature many other films documenting the early days of our modern digital culture. What stories do you hope the Chinns will tell? Post your hopes in the comments section.

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