From net to network

YouTube hit to become TV sitcom

A sitcom about making sitcoms that was turned by the networks has been picked up after NBC – after becoming a hit on the YouTube website.

NBC has ordered a six-part series of Nobody's Watching, which was co-written by the Scrubs creator Bill Lawrence.

A pilot was made for the WB network last year, but never made it to air. So Lawrence and his co-creators Neil Goldman and Garrett Donovan posted it on the video sharing website in three nine-minute segments.

Since then, more that 300,000 people viewed the first part, enough to prompt NBC to pick up the series.

The network’s entertainment president Kevin Reilly said: ‘I love the spirit of the experimentation, and I think if we can actually have something find an audience on the web, gravitate over to the network, continue with a web presence and have them feed each other, that could end up being a really cool thing.’

Nobody's Watching is about two TV obsessives who are given the chance to write a sitcom – which they do living and working on a sitcom set, on camera and in front of a live studio audience, as part of a reality show.

Mini-episodes of the show will premiere on the web before making it to air, to continue the viral marketing

Lawrence told trade paper Variety: ‘For it to succeed, it needs to become more edgy and blur the lines between reality and fiction.

‘If network TV doesn't embrace the internet as both a place to launch and test shows but also as a place where shows can live, they're going to fall further and further behind.’

Click here to watch the pilot on YouTube



Published: 21 Jul 2006

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