By now, we’ve all heard about the Steven Spielberg produced Halo series coming to Xbox. Its been described as a “Game of Thrones” quality project by Nancy Tellem, the seasoned TV executive turned president of Xbox Entertainment Studios. Although more recently, Tellem has described it as a slow-moving project, and one that we shouldn’t expect to see until early in the second quarter of 2014.
The troubles behind the prolonged production are due in part to the ambitious nature of the program. “We aren’t Netflix, we aren’t Amazon, we’re a different animal,” Tellem told Variety. Microsoft is trying to inject interactivity into television, and that’s a difficult task to tackle. However, Tellem understands that if the content “doesn’t resonate, interactive features won’t matter.” For Microsoft, success with their original shows means being progressive; offering interactive content that will keep viewers glued to their TV. Tellem doesn’t want the 48 million Xbox Live subscribers to simply watch an original episode once, but rather give multiple viewings incentive.
Today, there’s a level of freedom that didn’t exist when the TV executive began climbing the ranks in 1987. “This new millennial generation are multi-tasking and leaning in. They want the option to watch when they want to watch,” said Tellem. “We don’t have the layers traditional media has. Our studio is very lean, which allows us to be a lot more nimble and have a direct relationship with talent and help them realize their vision.”
While it’s still unconfirmed whether Microsoft’s original shows will have the expected QVC qualities, or even micro-transactions during cliff-hanger moments, they seem to be taking the high-road as far as content-creation is concerned, and it seems as if Tellem is excited to introduce the next-gen television experience to the next-gen Microsoft gaming console, one exciting show at a time.