'Lizzie Bennet Diaries' Follow-Up Asks Fans to Contribute


The company behind hit web series The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, a modern take on Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, is back at it with the follow-up Welcome to Sanditon.

From Pemberley Digital (which began as a fictional company and now is real), Welcome to Sanditon is a modernized tale based on the unfinished Sanditon novel by Austen. Unlike the popular Lizzie Bennet Diaries, which wrapped its 100-episode run in March after nearly a year, Welcome to Sanditon will allow viewers to create their own characters who will interact directly with the storyline through Pemberley Digital's team-up with interactive entertainment company Theatrics.

Through the use of Theatrics' storytelling platform, which will power the in-story beta test of the fictional Domino "life-revealing" application, the viewers will be able to crowd source material to add to the Welcome to Sanditon story.

The new take on Sanditon, which officially launches Monday, is set in the beach town of Sanditon, Calif., as it attempts to reinvent itself as a resort destination. The story will be told through Georgiana "Gigi" Darcy's (Allison Paige) videos, following a similar format to the Lizzie Bennet Diaries and its many offshoots, which will provide updates on the Domino beta test.

“With the recent launch of our new customer-facing storytelling platform, Theatrics.com is well positioned to collaborate with innovative partners such as Pemberley Digital, who, like us, are committed to creating experimental entertainment that pushes the boundaries of audience interactive storytelling,” said Biff Van Cleve, CEO of Theatrics.com.

"Using Sanditon -- where literally no one knows what Austen's ending was going to be -- as the basis for our next project seemed like the perfect way both for us to do something new and to be able to invite the fans to help create the town alongside us," said Margaret Dunlap, co-showrunner of Welcome to Sanditon.

Lizzie Bennet Diaries has won several awards, including two Streamys for best interactive series and best comedy writing. Its Kickstarter campaign, to raise funds for a DVD release, has raised more than $462,000 from more than 7,100 contributors.

Theatrics has partnered with USA Network for social game Psych: The S#cial Sector and launched its first web series Beckinfield.

Welcome to Sanditon is created by Jay Bushman and Dunlap, who executive produce. Dunlap was co-EP on Lizzie Bennet Diaries and Bushman was its transmedia producer.

E-mail: Philiana.Ng@thr.com
Twitter: @insidethetube

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