The Art of Immersion: How the Digital Generation Is Remaking Hollywood, Madison Avenue, and the Way We Tell Stories

Frank Rose, Norton, $25.95 (256p) ISBN 978-0-393-07601-1
The world's a stage—and an ad—according to this breathless dispatch from the new media marketing frontier. Wired contributing editor Rose (West of Eden) hails an infoscape teeming with alternate realities that are "non-linear," "participatory," and "immersive." Traditional entertainments like movies, TV shows, and music are getting higher-tech production values and are increasingly cross-linked to Web sites, video games, and YouTube. One result, he contends, is more engrossing narratives, exemplified by video games whose characters display emotional complexity while slaughtering zombies, and online communities obsessed with the tangled plot of Lost. The more tangible payoff is a raft of avant-garde marketing ploys, like a publicity campaign for a Batman movie featuring mysterious e-mails that sent recipients scurrying on a real-world scavenger hunt. But even as the ad agencies, production companies, and media consultancies the author profiles gush about these storytelling and revenue-generating innovations, Rose's language is repetitive and bland ("Interactive advertising efforts have meant getting people involved with a brand and its stories") and might leave readers wishing he'd taken more care with how to convey his own message. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 11/29/2010
Release date: 02/01/2011
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 384 pages - 978-0-393-34125-6
Open Ebook - 368 pages - 978-0-393-08079-7
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