NBC: New Web Shows, Pact With Omnicom

NEW YORK NBC Universal is developing a pair of new Web series within its recently revamped digital studio, including a sci-fi series starring actress Rosario Dawson, as well as a show about a college kid who turns into a zombie. And to underwrite the development of these and other upcoming series, NBCU has forged a sponsorship partnership with Omnicom Media Group Digital.

The Dawson star vehicle, Gemini Division, is a future set New York cop show featuring human clones. The show, which also stars Justin Hartley of Smallville, has already snagged Intel, Microsoft, UPS and Acura TSX as sponsors.

Meanwhile the zombie-themed Woke Up Dead, depicts college student Drex Greene, whose life is thrown out of whack when he realizes he’s actually deceased. That show is still in development, according to NBCU.

For each project, NBCU is allowing advertisers to have a say early in the development process on how their brands are integrated into scripts. “This is the first time that programming with the distribution potential of NBC Universal will be centered from the start around advertisers,” said OMG Digital CEO Matt Spiegel.

To help lead the expanding, agency-friendly studio’s growth, NBCU has reached out to the agency world for talent. The group has added former OMG East Coast digital director Suhaila Suhimi to serve as its director of brand strategy, said officials.