Wednesday, December 17, 2014

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App Wrap: "Haunting Melissa"

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NY1 highlights the coolest and newest apps for your cellphone or mobile device in the twice-weekly segment "App Wrap." NY1's Adam Balkin filed the following report.

One of the modern masters at scaring you out of your theater seat is now trying to scare you out of whatever seat you happen to be sitting in at any moment in time.

Neal Edelstein, who produced "The Ring," "The Ring 2" and "Mulholland Drive" has just released "Haunting Melissa". It looks and feels like a traditional movie and for the most part it is...only, it's told through an app so that Edelstein can break it up and decide when to scare you.

"I wanted to tell a story, I wanted to tell a ghost story, I wanted to scare people on a personal level but I also wanted to do it in a different way. I wanted to leverage the technology to be able to tell them a story that comes with them when they least expect it, in bits and pieces," explains Edelstein. "There should be an anticipation of what's coming next, you don't know when it's coming you don't know how long it's going to be but the story will unravel and if you have your device close by which we all do you're gonna know when the next piece is coming. So that anticipation is really exciting because the unknown is as exciting as the known and that's part of the drama."

Creators say not only is an app a cool new way to scare viewers but also it's just good business in that A, it's a great way to foster that relationship with a fan and B, it's also a great way to keep those fans in the loop on future projects.

"It's a channel, the app is a channel. This is not a movie stuffed into an application to compete with Netflix. This is a way for us to keep things original and ever-changing and pushing content to the end user so the company has designs to do similar projects but initially it's all about the app and going into that world and branding the app and making that the experience," says Edelstein.

"Haunting Melissa" starts off as a free app for iOS devices. That is, you get the first installment or episode for free; the second for free as well if you help spread the word on Facebook. After that, you can get a full season pass for $6.99 in standard definition or $14.99 in HD. ClientIP:, UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 ( Profile: TWCSAMLSP