Australia’s drought remains severe, but the award-winning interactive drama project, Scorched, offers a searing reality check for Australians nationwide. The year is 2012 and Sydney, facing raging bushfires, is finally out of water. As politicians, journalists, and ordinary citizens race to save their country, the project urges real Australians to join the not-so-fantastical fiction.
Using popular new media tools, the project turns viewers into participants in the unfolding crises — delivering Orwell’s dystopia into the 21st century. Scorched uses of a television series, live characters reporting on YouTube, cell phone alerts, mock news updates, blogs and social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter to weave a complex theater of narratives staging a desperate future for Australia.
To date, at least 10 percent of Australia’s population has taken part. Recent winner of an International Digital Emmy Award for best fiction program at the Cannes MIPTV conference, Scorched continues to earn attention and accolades across the world.