The "Storyline" from StoryCo - Issue 005 (The One Where we Launch our First Co-Created Story Branch)
Issue 005 (The One Where we Launch our First Co-Created Story Branch)
"Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious."
In Chapter 1 of THE DISCO BALL we are introduced to the affable and charismatic Marcus Rhoder (voiced by the great Lionel Boyce).
We are only given a glimpse of his persona through the eyes of Alma, but there's more to Marcus than meets the eye. He has his own compelling narrative that our community has brought to life through our Co/Create initiative!
That's right: Marcus' backstory is now live at story.co/discoball/branches/marcus for your story consumption pleasure!
In this issue of the "Storyline" from StoryCo:
-A recap + helpful links on the launch of THE DISCO BALL
-Profiles of the co-creators who brought Marcus' backstory to life + a recap video from our community manager, Vicky
-Announcing our next Co/Lab: How to Write a Song with Eva Hendricks!
-Our StoryCo Producer highlight
🚀 The Disco Ball Launch: A Quick Recap 🚀
Two weeks ago, we launched our first collaborative narrative: THE DISCO BALL. THE DISCO BALL is written by Kyle Killen, illustrated by shelby and sandy, and stars Stephanie Beatriz, Costa Ronin, and Lionel Boyce. We were absolutely stoked to put it out to the world after over a year of hard work, hope you’ve all been digging it, and can’t wait to release subsequent chapters and features to continue creating THE DISCO BALL experience with you (speaking of which, head to Story.co/create to learn how).
ICYMI, here's a quick collection of helpful links to get you caught up with what transpired during launch week:
This is just the very start of our journey with THE DISCO BALL. There is SO much more to come.
Let's keep it rolling 🚀
Marcus Rhoder's Backstory is Here (✍️ + 🎨 + 🎭 = 🎞)!
Marcus' backstory chronicles his relationship with his college sweetheart, Jackie, as they chase their shared dream of exploring space together. It exemplifies our vision for THE DISCO BALL - a narrative universe continuously evolving and expanding through the creative contributions of our community.
Marcus' backstory is a “Story Branch” from the core narrative of THE DISCO BALL - like how Rogue One or Book of Boba Fett are story branches of the initial Star Wars Trilogy. Story Branches give our community the ability to tell any story in the world of THE DISCO BALL in whatever medium they choose.
And the best part is; you can pitch your vision for a future Story Branch right now by submitting to our Ideas Co/Create!
There are so many types of stories to tell within this universe, and we can’t wait for our community to expand it in whatever way they chose.
For more on Marcus' backstory, read our Twitter thread and blog post announcing the launch and check out the below recap video from our esteemed Community Manager, Vicky Giap!
Introducing the Co-Creators of the Marcus Rhoder Backstory 📈
We are excited to celebrate the incredible talents of the three co-creators who brought the Marcus Rhoder backstory to life. Each contributed to the backstory their unique skill sets, adding entirely new and original depth to the character.
The Marcus Rhoder Backstory co-creators include:
-Screenwriter Michael Lewen: Michael started his career working for Judd Apatow’s production company, providing him the education and experience to break off and write and direct his own feature films (his first film Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between premiered on Netflix last year, and he’s at work on his sophomore effort with Seth Rogen’s Point Grey Productions). Read our full writeup on Michael Lewen in our Co/Create Winner Profile!
-Illustrator Ron Ackins: Ron is a preeminent illustrator who has collaborated with brands like Nike, Sony Music Entertainment, Roc Nation, and most notably, Marvel Comics, for whom he’s contributed to titles like Miles Morales: Spider-Man and Moon Knight. Read our full writeup on Ron Ackins in our Co/Create Winner Profile!
-Actress Lauren Neal: Lauren Neal is not only an acclaimed actress (landing roles in shows like Westworld (2016) and many other independent features, short films, and digital series), but she is also an experienced director of commercials and has a graduate degree in data science from the University of Virginia! Read our full writeup on Lauren Neal in our Co/Create Winner Profile!
Our next Co/Lab: How to Write a Song with Eva Hendricks
Need an idea for a unique, personal Christmas gift? 🎁
Writing a song for your loved one will definitely put you at the top of this year's Coolest Gifters list!
It's not hard, we'll show you: come join us for our next Co/Lab featuring the extremely talented Eva Hendricks, lead singer and songwriter of the acclaimed New York-based power pop band Charly Bliss!
Eva, a graduate of NYU’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music, is celebrated for her dynamic stage presence and unique sound. She's toured globally, performing at major festivals and alongside artists like Bleachers, CHVRCHES, and Death Cab for Cutie. Her current band, Charly Bliss, has released two albums - Guppy(2017) and Young Enough (2019) - to wide critical acclaim from major publications such as Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, Entertainment Weekly, NPR, and The Ringer.
In this Co/Lab, Eva will guide us through the fundamentals of songwriting — from crafting memorable melodies and catchy lyrics to exploring different song forms. It's a hands-on experience designed for music lovers and creators of all skill levels.
Whether you're a seasoned musician or just starting on your musical journey, bring your creativity and enthusiasm for a session full of learning and fun. Hit “Interested” at this Discord event to get reminded of the Co/Lab.
Let’s cook up some bangers together 🎵
StoryCo Producer Spotlight
Amidst such a big few weeks at StoryCo, we’d be remiss to highlight some of the incredible Producers we have in our community who inspire and uplift us in our mission to democratize storytelling.
Starting with the multi-talented Lauren Neal (yes, the voice of Jackie), who is soon releasing her new movie Under the Influence, a micro-budget indie film for which she is the technical director, editor, VFX artist, executive producer, and lead actor!
The logline of the film: “When a struggling digital artist has her work appropriated by a popular art curator, will she remain a victim, or become the perpetrator of a more deleterious crime?”
Next, Fred Grinstein and Minh Do recently launched a TikTok series called “Machine Cinema,” where they review the latest films and shorts made with AI. So cool to see our community members building at the bleeding edge of entertainment, go give them a follow on Instagram and TikTok!
Lastly, Transient Labs, co-founded by Producer Marco Peyfuss, recently released the “Story Inscriptions” protocol. Story Inscriptions allow artists and collectors, alike, to attach unique, textual stories or descriptions to their NFTs. Think of it like a digital label or a diary entry that provides context, history, and personal narratives to each digital piece, enriching the intrinsic value. Creating strong bonds between creator and fan via storytelling - it’s no wonder this project caught our attention. Congrats to Marco and the Transient team!