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Fox.com mingles with ‘Malcolm’

Cyberbiz brief

In what appears to be one of the first baby steps toward the often-promised vertical integration of online and primetime production at Fox, the network has begun introducing video interviews with cast and crew of the Fox TV series “Malcolm in the Middle” on Fox.com. The interviews, recorded on set over the last several months, are broken into short streaming responses to fan questions by actors as their on-screen characters. It’s believed to be the first such video extension of fan Q&A areas on Web sites.

Perhaps more significant is that the interviews were produced by Esther Riggin of Fox Foundry, a digital production pod set up for Fox Television Studios. It also represents the first such project for an inhouse series. “Malcolm” is produced by Regency Television, one of several studios under the Fox Television umbrella. Fox is also considering extending the synergy even further by perhaps using the behind-the-scenes footage in possible DVD versions of the series.