THE COLLECTIVE JOURNEY: Transmedia & the Rise of a New Form of Story

The Internet continues to transform communication and commerce, but few anticipated how it has given birth to new narrative canvases capable of profound social and artistic expression. In this exclusive talk, Jeff Gomez, CEO of Starlight Runner Entertainment and pioneer in the field of transmedia storytelling, will describe how the time of the Hero’s Journey espoused by Joseph Campbell is now giving way to a fascinating new narrative model Gomez calls the Collective Journey. Signified by Game of Thrones, Orange is the New Black, The Walking Dead, Minecraft, #BlackLivesMatter, the revival of Star Wars, and even the media tactics of ISIS, the shift to the Collective Journey presents soaring opportunities, says Gomez, but there are also dangers.

Jeff Gomez, CEO of Starlight Runner Entertainment, is a leading expert in the field of transmedia storytelling, specializing in the expansion of entertainment properties, premium brands and socio-political themes into highly successful multi-platform franchises and international campaigns.

As a transmedia producer, Jeff also develops the story worlds of films, television shows, toys, books, comics, apps, videogame titles, and theme park attractions across an array of media touchpoints, which deepens audience engagement, and generates massive fan communities and multiple revenue streams. Jeff’s pop culture work has impacted such blockbuster entertainment properties as Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean, James Cameron’s Avatar, Hasbro’s Transformers, Sony Pictures’​ Spider-Man and Men in Black, Microsoft’s Halo, and Nickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Jeff is currently the transmedia producer of Mark Burnett’s Lucha Underground TV series. Other current clients include Sesame Workshop and Disney Parks & Resorts.

Jeff’s proprietary transmedia development and implementation methods have also been applied to educational and geo-political causes, accelerating positive social movements and increasing resistance to organized crime, violent extremism, and corruption. Through applications of transmedia population activation, he has helped to address crises in Mexico, Colombia, and the Middle East North Africa region. He has recently started work at Curtin University to use transmedia techniques and a new narrative model he calls the Collective Journey to increase retention among first-year students, particularly those from Low Socio-Economic Status, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, and Regional and Remote backgrounds.