DVD video and Web-delivered content have converged to give rise to a new breed of interactive murder mystery film and game, Jack Kain. The film, which was officially launched on Thursday, will be delivered in multimedia installments until 7 June.
Acts one and two of the story have been bundled in an hour-long DVD feature, while future updates, which include fictional newspaper reports, police files, suspect profiles, still photos, video footage, and online polls, will appear on the game's Web site.
The game offers a $100,000 cash prize to the person or persons who successfully identify the 'Digit Serial Killer'. Participants begin playing by purchasing a $29.95 film on DVD or via a download from the Jack Kain Web site, which gives each player a unique game-playing code that allows users to submit their answers.
When the game concludes, each submission will be judged on how well it identifies the killer and motive. Players will also be asked to give their reasons for nominating the particular suspect, and the best answer or answers as judged by a panel of three judges, including the game's producer and founder Darren McNamara, will win the cash prize.
Jack Kain is expected to be the first of many films in this new interactive space. McNamara revealed that a sequel to the film is already in the works, with a script ready to go pending Jack Kain 1's success.
While McNamara initially found marketing the new breed of film to distributors and resellers a challenge, he said conversations with resellers have been very positive. The DVD is currently being distributed by LA Entertainment and will be made globally available in NTSC and all regions format.
A long-time fan of interactive games, TV and movies, McNamara expects successful players to have good problem-solving skills. The winner of the $100,000 cash prize could potentially be a member of the police force or a lawyer, he said, although he was careful not to discount the detective skills of women around the age of 35, who have been proven to be a prime demographic for murder mystery TV shows and movies.