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MCA taps Melnyk for new slot as interactive media VP

As another sign that MCA is looking to push many of its divisions into the interactive world, the company announced that Alex Melnyk has been named VP of interactive media, a new post, for the MCA Music Entertainment Group.

Melnyk, who was most recently executive producer/project development at Geismar & Groth Interactive, will work closely with the MCA Music Entertainment Group’s labels and artists to develop and market interactive programming. She also will work with Uni Distribution Corp., which will distribute interactive product from other MCA divisions, including the interactive unit.

“The MCA Music Entertainment Group is committed to the development of music-intensive interactive media,” Al Teller, chairman of MCA Music Entertainment Group, said in a statement. “Alex has the experience and vision necessary to identify and implement new interactive media projects. These will be created both in-house and through third-party arrangements.”

While Melnyk said her mandate is to develop music-driven projects, she noted that her unit will “push the envelope” when it comes to music and interactivity.

“I think the kind of title that we see on the market, especially in the music area, have been mostly generic database discs,” said Melnyk, formerly an executive producer/director of Propaganda Films’ musicvideo division. “We need to figure out a way to make them more experiential. The problem is with a lot of them is that once you’ve navigated through them, there isn’t that much depth.”

As expected, Melnyk said she will be working with many of the music label’s artists, looking for interactive projects for them, but added: “I made it clear that I didn’t want to see this division repurposing material that’s on the label. Some artists will warrant product and some probably won’t. I would also like to produce some original programming that is not based on any of our artists.”

In addition to her other duties, Melnyk will supervise MCA’s multimedia lab, where much of the division’s product development takes place. The lab is being moved onto the Universal City lot. Melnyk said the staff of the lab, which consists of a producer, two artists and a production coordinator, will expand as the unit’s projects increase.

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