"The fans of this series are hungry and insatiable; this is a clever way to feed the audience and keep them wanting more."—juror Michael Potts
"A great example of how to use game mechanics in a compelling way. It's not just badges and status, but also surprise, implicit rewards and exploration." —juror Keith Butters
Overview: This interactive film/fan experience promoted True Blood Season 3 on DVD, Blu-ray and digital download; it questions whether fans caught all the details of the third season of the series. It challenges fans to prove just how well they know their True Blood, by embedding Season 3 clues in what at first appears to be a traditional commercial. A custom player allows users to zoom deep into the image; the more clues they tag, the more badges (which post directly to Facebook) they earn. It's a film that becomes a game and proves the more people look, the more they'll see—just as it was with Season 3.
• If fans pore over every detail (and really know their True Blood facts), they’ll discover 60 taggable Season 3 clues embedded in the action.
• Users spent an average of 23 minutes interacting with the Dig Deeper film and began trading answers, bragging, competing and even creating cheat sites to crack all of the clues.
• Within one week, True Blood Season 3 became the year-to-date number-one TV title of 2011 on DVD.
Comments by Greg Hahn, Mike Smith, Rick Williams and Marcel Yunes:
What was the most challenging aspect of the project? "Creating Dig Deeper required us to become experts in every detail of True Blood, scholars of every nuance, prop, character and backstory. Basically, everyone involved had to eat, sleep and dream True Blood for months. The task didn't just involve hiding things in plain sight, but involved selecting the right range of clues, some hard enough to be ultra-challenging for Truebies (True Blood diehards) and some inclusive and overt enough to draw in newbies and give them a reason to buy the DVD.
"Technically, none of this would've been possible without the awesome collaboration among BBDO, Biscuit Filmworks, B-Reel and the HBO team that was behind the incredible one-take shots that held so much information, but the real star was the interface. The real-time zooming, the frame-by-frame timeline, moving tags and elegant badges made the experience not just effortless, but a living, breathing thing that was super-responsive, both socially and as a game."