WHO - your life into a movie

(a cross media Soap Opera)


Traditional story telling techniques used in cinema and TV are generally one-way lean-back experiences.  We go to a cinema, we sit down and watch the director's vision unfold.

I love going to the cinema.  The very process of leaning-back and going with the flow is key to the cinema-going experience - we are offered an hour and half of escapism in return for the price of admission.  And what's wrong with that?  Nothing!

That said, I for one am excited by new opportunities to combine traditional storytelling with interactivity. This is something I am very keen to experiment with and discuss.  Hence, my development of the WHO project.

Project Description:

“WHO – your life into a movie” is a brand new cross media concept that merges traditional TV with user interaction and co-creation (user-generated content). Based on traditional episodes of dramatic fiction presented in serial formats the WHO project aims to formalise a loose interactive framework that will allow anyone to contribute and participate in the story we will create together. 

In each episode a new character is introduced to the audience. The audience is invited to participate by submitting a short video (which can be produced with mobile phones, web cams or with a video camera) suggesting the personality or actions of a new character. Ideas generated by the audience are then developed by a creative team and an actor/actress will be selected to play the role created.   

Being based on a novel structure, the WHO project aims to create a relationship between the audience and the novels main characters.  By allowing the audience to create the profiles of new characters , people can directly influence the narrative told.  

The idea of having a creative role in the process is the hook to engaging the audience. High quality submissions will be invited to not only participate in the development process but also act and play the role of character's created.  Who wouldn’t like to act side by side with their favourite actors/idols?

Therefore, online version also act as a talent finder and offer people real-world production experience, as each contribution is similar to an open casting session where new ideas and talent can be found.

The TV version is a standard novel and presents the plot-line of the series as a cohesive linear narrative. The online version is based on a branching narrative model (non-linear narrative). It differs from the TV version (standard linear narrative) by providing additional contents (additional scenes / stories that expand the main narrative, exclusive content). The online version will allow users (the audience) to follow one character/story at a time and  “jump” between stories by clicking on relevant and significant objects on the screen. This feature allows users to realise that there are elements in the main narrative (on TV) that are a direct result of another story, and this effects the direction of the main narrative and offers viewers a reason to engage by offering further content and "gameplay" - within the video.

note: The movement from analog to digital systems will allow broadcasters to add interactivity to their shows.

WHO project flow diagram

In order to apply to take part in the show, the candidates must use the online platform and click on specific objects to browse trough the contents before being able to apply.

moneyBrand Integration:

Hands up those of you who fast forward through TV ad breaks on their DVR? Yeah, me too. It’s a growing challenge to the TV advertising model as the sales of DVRs continue to rise. To combat ad-skipping, the industry is advertising by placing products directly into movies and films.

Integrated advertising plays a more prominent part in movies and TV shows. Integrated adverting often takes the form of product placement, something that can be built up around the narrative or simply have presence on screen. Viewers cannot bypass the advertising if it is integrated into the media. If it is done well (seamlessly woven into the narrative), it may not be noticeable to the viewer and may actually add to the experience. This is of growing importance to advertisers as the EU relaxes its rules around product placement.

The opportunity to engage viewers and enrich video material by generating interactivity and combine this with ecommerce and mobile adds a whole new dimension to 'Customer Experience'. Although the online version is designed to force users to click / touch people and objects in video (anything in the video can be clickable), a "find and follow clues with the promise of a prize at the end" feature can be easily implemented to incentivate and atract more users. Taggable and clickable video enables people to interact directly with video content rather than interrupt their content experience.

This way, the impressions delivered will stick the advertised brand in people’s memories. The products are part of the story and can be emotionally associated with actors / stars. This type of ad creates a virtual magnifying glass that highlights the brand and the intended impression in a memorable and indissoluble way. The real trick to TV advertising (or any video execution) is to engage people with content where the brand is an integral part of what is likely to be found memorable. 

In order for all this to work, content must have good story, be relevant to auds to be watched, shared and passed along. 

taggable and clickable video


Once videos can be shared on social networks or embedded on other sites and platforms, the commerce opportunities is limitless and extremely attractive to advertisers. Any person from the audience that comes to enter in the novel will probably share that specific episode with their friends in their networks. This way, the audience will play an important role in the promotion of the branded goods or services placed in the novel.

audience promotes your product

note: The average cost for a 30 second spot on television can cost anywhere from $50,000 to $400,000. Product placement however, costs only a fraction of that, and gets
          products into high-impact situations.

Other Information:

Language: Portuguese, designed for easy adaptation
Target group: 16 +
Genre: Soap opera, cross-genre web TV
Media Platforms:
  • TV
  • Online
  • Mobil Devices
  • DVD & Blu-Ray
  • Social media
  • Newspapers
  • Magazines

This project is cross platform and it supports subtitles and additional audio tracks.

supported devices

We have created a pilot episode (webisode) to demonstrate the online version functionality.


Pilot episode:

We are content-focused and we understand the importance of having high-quality, distinctive and relevant content and it's the impact on audiences. The idea of content engagement is simple – it’s about engaging your audience through the content you provide. The following espisode was created only to ilustrate some of the WHO project online version functionalities. We aim to improve all aspects including the script and all the tasks included in the filmmaking process from development to completion. The core concept for user-created content used in WHO project can be used in any series or season. A sitcom like Seinfeld is a good example where this concept can be applied.

"The show's main characters and many secondary characters were modeled after Seinfeld's and David's real-life acquaintances. Other recurring characters were based on well-known, real-life counterparts such as Jacopo Peterman of the J. Peterman catalogue (nominally based on John Peterman), and George Steinbrenner, the owner of the New York Yankees.

With every Seinfeld episode, the structure is mainly the way the principal characters' storyline is set. A story thread is presented at the beginning of each episode, which involves the characters in separate and seemingly unrelated situations. Rapid scene-shifts between story lines bring the stories together toward the end of the episode. Despite the separate plot strands, the narratives reveal the creators' "consistent efforts to maintain [the] intimacy" between the small cast of characters."

Note: Although the dialogues are in Portuguese, the menus are in english and you will easily understand the concept with no need to understand the dialogues. Enjoy it!




The online version branching narrative model:

The online system functionality it's easy and simple to use. For the user it's just like navigating through DVD menus. To participate and produce a video is as simple as click a button and record using a webcam or mobile phone. For those who prefer to shoot and edit footage before publish, there is also a file-upload system just like in youtube.
The only way users have to candidate to play a role in the series is by using the online version.

basic narrative structure

Creative Parameters:

  • It starts with different characters/story arcs.
  • Each of these different character/story arcs must meet in the jump-off points allowing the audience to jump from one to another.
  • There are elements/actions in one narrative that can indirectly influence the other(s). They are named cross-over points.
  • Jump-off points and cross-over points can be anything in the screen. Any existing object on the set can work as an interactive spot, allowing sponsors to showcase and sell they products.
  • All the characters/story arcs must meet at the end (meeting point) of each episode in order to allow the audience to propose a new character that will be added to the next episode.
  • Ideas generated by the audience are then developed by the creative team and an actor/actress will be selected to play the role created.
  • High quality submissions will be invited to not only participate in the development process but may also be offered the opportunity to enter in the novel and act and play the role of the character they created.
  • The new characters created by the audience are secondary characters and will play a role in the series for limited time (one episode).
  • New episodes will be released every week (one episode per week).
  • All episodes available all season long. By accessing and using the online platform users can jump in and catch up on the full season anytime.

In the pilot, we have tried to very gently combine the traditional with the interactive.  For example, when you watch the pilot you will follow one character/story at a time.  There are cross-over points (with the other characters/stories) built into the film but these are not "jump-off points".

When you do decide to jump between stories you will realise that there are elements (named cross-over points) in one story that are a direct result of another story, and this effects the direction of future narratives.  


Production scheduling:

One month before first episode:

  1. Creative Guerilla Marketing Campaigns - "WHO is Bernardo?", "WHO are you?"
  2. Adds in newspapers and magazzines - "WHO is Bernardo?";
  3. TV teaser campaign;

Here's what will happen....Click on the image thumbnails to preview the Creative Guerilla Marketing Campaigns.

Guerrilha campaign thumbnails


Broadcast of the series premiere:

production scheduling

Project stage:

We have created a pilot webisode to demonstrate the idea and functionality of the WHO project online version and we have tested it with invited users. We have also created a facebook application that allows facebook users to test the pilot project and invite friends to join and play it too. We've built a community and the community is growing. We are now seeking funding or a television production company to produce the series premiere.

We are a small team but we will keep working...

Do you believe "WHO - your life into a movie" is great transmedia project? We're currently searching for talented individuals to join our team.
You can contact us contact us here .


spread the word

 You can help us!

  It's so easy... just spread the word

It's quite easy and fast and you will be helping us a lot. You just need to share WHO with your friends in your social network.

Click here Share   to share WHO with your friends on facebook or copy-past the following link in any other social network or by send it by email:


That's all and you will be helping us to make this project real. Thank you!

Creative Commons License

WHO - your life into a movie by Diogo Pessoa de Andrade is licensed under a
Creative Commons Atribuição-Uso Não-Comercial-Não a Obras Derivadas 2.5 Portugal License.

blu-ray disc Television HD-DVD DVD video Internet Flash-Enabled Mobile Devices