AFI sets workshops for enhanced TV programs

Teams will develop interactive program add-ons

HOLLYWOOD — The American Film Institute kicked off its sixth year of workshops developing enhanced TV programming this week, and will take applications through May 23 for the five-month workshop process.

Teams of show creators who are chosen for the program will work with broadcast, hardware and software specialists to develop program add-ons such as interactive games, polls, background information and other material that can expand the utility of TV. Last year, eight teams took part, including several PBS programs, Turner Classic Movies, TVLand and the Food Network.

This year, the workshop will expand its focus to include developing enhancements that can run on a range of devices beyond standard set-top cable and satellite receivers. Those devices could include videogame consoles, Internet-capable DVD players and wireless devices.

“The platform landscape in the United States has developed in ways no one anticipated a few years ago,” said Marcia Zellers, who directs AFI’s enhanced TV program. “The workshop’s focus is on deployable concepts, so we felt it was important that this year’s direction reflect market realities.”

Applications can be found at www.afi.com/etv.

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