Film grads win second Emmy in five months

Xenophile Media, a pioneering producer of TV programs, games and interactive content founded by two York film grads, has won its second Emmy Award this year for another television reality game.

Fallen: The Alternate Reality Game produced for Disney and broadcast on ABC Family in the US, won a Primetime Emmy for Interactive Television Programming last Saturday at the 59th Annual Creative Arts Emmy Awards in Los Angeles.

The award comes less than half a year after the Xenophile Media team picked up their first Emmy in Cannes for ReGenesis Extended Reality Game, Season 2, a Web site associated with a series aired last fall on Global TV and nominated the most popular site in Canada. The game was created by Xenophile Media’s senior producer Patrick Crowe (BFA ‘90) and producer Keith Clarkson (MBA ‘93), and included senior producer Thomas Wallner (BFA ‘91) as a writer.

Left: From left, Thomas Wallner, unidentified female, Keith Clarkson and Patrick Crowe at Cannes

Fallen: The Alternate Reality Game was commissioned by Disney to sustain viewer interest in a TV series about a fallen angel between its pilot and its final release as six one-hour episodes. Over the summer of 2006, players were invited to help the heroine Faith on her mysterious journey around the world in search of her origins. They took part in a virtual scavenger hunt of clues placed on fictional and real Web sites.

Fallen the game also won a Banff World TV Festival Award and a South By Southwest Interactive Award for best experimental project in Texas this year.

In April, Xenophile Media’s ReGenesis Extended Reality Game, Season 2, tied with the Canadian animated series Zimmer Twins for the Interactive Program award at the International Interactive Emmy Awards in Cannes. Created to support the TV series ReGenesis, about a team of scientists who investigate biotechnology disasters, the online game invites viewers to take part as investigators to uncover the story. The game also won a Gemini Award for cross-platform project, a Canadian New Media Award for excellence in cross platform, and a Banff World Television Award.

Crowe and Wallner founded Xenophile Media in 2002. They met while studying film at York. Crowe is an award-winning writer, producer, game designer and filmmaker. Wallner, also an award-winning producer and writer, has a background in interactive and documentary film and TV production.

Xenophile Media is making a name for itself in the new frontier of interactive online games to support TV shows. It has worked with clients and partners in Canada, the US, Europe and Australia and won a slew of national and international awards.

The company also produces more traditional fare. Wallner wrote the Gemini award-winning screenplay for the documentary Beethoven’s Hair and is scripting Inside Hana’s Suitcase, based on the internationally best-selling children’s book. Both projects are collaborations with Rhombus Media, also a company founded by York grads. Wallner is also writing the screeplay for a documentary about Cuba’s legendary Tropicana nightclub.