The BBC today announces a major new online drama commission, Waterloo Road Reunited.
Waterloo Road Reunited is being produced by Shed Media Scotland and will give fans of the BBC One hit series the chance to catch up with the lives and loves of favourite characters from past series including Bolton, Michaela, Janeece, Philip, Aleesha and Paul, as they all make their way in the world away from the classroom with mixed results!
Using a combination of scripted episodes, fictional social media networks, audio and interactive fan sites, Waterloo Road Reunited will allow the audience to extend their relationship with their favourite characters from the screen to online.
Sarah Clay, BBC Drama, Multiplatform Commissioning Executive, says: “Unlike most dramas, Waterloo Road is unique in that every year popular characters have to leave the show because they leave school. This leaves Waterloo Road’s massive online fan base with a natural thirst to find out what happened to the likes of Bolton, and Michaela. We wanted to give fans a chance to follow their lives online. The video will focus on events that bring the ex-pupils together, but the story extends beyond video allowing the audience to follow their lives as if they were friends with them on Facebook.”
Victoria Jaye, BBC Head of Fiction and Entertainment Multiplatform Commissioning, says: “The BBC is in unique position to help grow the audience for distinctive, high quality fiction beyond broadcast TV. Our focus is to look to TV story worlds, like Waterloo Road, already popular with our audience and extend these across the digital canvas in ways that will both delight and surprise. This commission follows the success of online extensions: Eastenders: E20 and Doctor Who: The Adventure Games.”
Margaret Scott, Head of Business Development for Shed Media Scotland, says: “We are delighted the BBC appreciates the increasing appetite for extended content by young people and the growth of social networking and streamed content to mobile devices and online platforms. Fans of Waterloo Road are prolific users of the web as activity on BBC iPlayer, the Waterloo Road website, many Facebook fan sites and Twitter testify. Waterloo Road Reunited is a natural extension designed to sate this appetite. Shed Media Scotland aim to be at the forefront developing and producing engaging and entertaining content that taps into and exploits these emerging trends.”
Waterloo Road Reunited is due to launch in Spring 2011. Series six of Waterloo Road, which regularly attracts over than five million viewers a week, returns to BBC One in the New Year.
The BBC executive producer for Waterloo Road United is Gaynor Holmes, BBC Scotland.
Ann McManus, creator of Waterloo Road is the joint executive producer with Margaret Scott for Shed Media Scotland Ltd – the show will be produced by Kat Hebden.
Waterloo Road Reunited is being overseen by Ann McManus, the creator of the BBC One series, and a brand-new team of Scottish-based writers.
Waterloo Road is produced by Shed Productions through BBC Scotland for BBC One.