Last Updated: Fri Jul 29, 2011 05:32 am (KSA) 02:32 am (GMT)

Noora Faraj: Social Media on the Silver Screen

Directed by DJ Caruso and starring Emmy Rossum, 'Inside' is broken up into several segments across multiple social media platforms, including Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. (File Photo)
Directed by DJ Caruso and starring Emmy Rossum, 'Inside' is broken up into several segments across multiple social media platforms, including Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. (File Photo)

As I was on YouTube to update my report for the day, I was distracted by the right-hand column on the home page. Under the banner of “Trending” or “Features,” not sure which one, there was a trailer of a movie, titled “Inside.”

It had a lot of hits, and obviously that was reason enough for me to click on the thumbnail to find out more. After watching the short movie trailer, I was most impressed by the unprecedented concept. Only in our generation would this idea have manifested that of incorporating social media into a motion picture.

The movie is basically about a young woman in her 20s, trapped in a nondescript location without any knowledge of her whereabouts, motive of being held captive, and with nothing but a laptop in her possession.

Seemingly clichéd storyline? Yawn. But here’s the creative jolt: The essence of the movie is fans are encouraged to audition for “roles” which involve helping the protagonist figure her way out and discover the reason behind her kidnapping. And to keep the hype gaining momentum, the movie is released in parts.

Of course, major product placement, actually scratch that, major sponsorship is involved, namely Toshiba and Intel, so cynics might deem the movie as one major promo that will probably give Mark Zuckerberg extra pocket change, of around several million.

I think this idea takes uncovering new talent to a whole new level. More importantly, I think this movie is a way of boosting interactivity of these social media platforms, which has been on the steady rise with countless corporations having sites such as Twitter and Facebook as a default method of sharing information.

What’s next for social media? I want to be in the movies.

(Noora Faraj is Senior Producer of Web TV at Al Arabiya English. She can be reached at: noora.faraj@mbc.net)

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