Exquisite Minx

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Rhea Scott, founder of the Little Minx division of RSA, enlisted New York-based creative boutique Idealogue in an attempt to address all these issues.Together they came up with a promotion that riffs off the idea of the Surrealist parlor game Exquisite Corpse. While the original game challenges players to create a story piecemeal, each participant adding line by line to create a bigger, sometimes ludicrous tale, this new-school version applies the theme to film, in stories that interpret the Little Minx name.

So far, five of the company's directors—Laurent Briet, Chris Nelson, Malik Hassan Sayeed, Josh Miller and Phillip Van—are playing. Briet is up first, with his interpretation launching Oct. 1, distributed via an Idealogue-led new-media strategy that targets content aggregators, social networks, blogs and peer-to-peer trading. Every two weeks, a new short will be released, and the rules state that the next player's film will start where the final line of the previous director's script left off.
"We were inspired to showcase a new competency directors need to have in the new-media world," says Idealogue co-CD Jacqui Bosnjak. Co-CD Mark Beukes says the shop also found inspiration in nonlinear narratives like Time Code, Short Cuts and Memento, as well as in interactive games. "The proposal, by its very nature, is extremely gamelike and feels very contemporary," he adds. While the effort might seem an unconventional approach to marketing her company, "Creating an original entertainment property was the most sustainable way to inspire our directors, showcase their talent, brand the company and ultimately create something that was bigger than the sum of its parts," says Scott. "Content is king."

"For the viewer, as well as for us the directors, there is quite a bit of mystery surrounding each film," says director Malik Hassan Sayeed. "None of us obviously knows what the other is doing, so that unknown generates excitement and intrigue. How each of these films plays off of the others will also be very interesting. I feel like we are running a relay race with a Cracker Jack surprise at the end." Although any content venture today faces the challenge of attracting eyeballs, Scott is banking that the quality of the films—a sneak peek looked very promising—will help them land a loyal audience. "We're hoping to create a cult following for the films and perhaps even inspire other directors or the culture at large to continue the Little Minx Exquisite Corpse," she says. "There are no risks in doing this, just financial challenges. I think the real risk is not to recognize the opportunity we have now to experiment in visualizing new formats for a new world."

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