Web Series: ‘Unicornland’

Unicornland is both a funny and serious look at sex. Unlike most web series about anything – especially sex – the show is actually mature. Yes, for reals, about grown ups having, you know, sex.

Truth to tell, Unicornland is more mature than our first paragraph. Definitely something to see here.

Something very good.,

Stareable, our fave website devoted to web series, gives Unicornland 5 stars. But we here at TVWriter™ believe it’s a better series than most of the 5 star shows out there.

Unicornland on Stareable is HERE

The entire series is HERE

So You Want to Make a Web Series – Step 2

Pre Pre-Production
by Bri Castellini

Plenty of screenwriters might go their whole careers without ever filming something themselves. But you, my friends, have chosen that web series way of life — indie film at its most indie. In general, making a film is broken up into three parts: pre-production (planning), production (filming), and post-production (editing). In reality, though, each of those parts is a process unto itself. So today, we’re going to talk about the pre production you do BEFORE pre-production truly begins.

Pre-pre-production is essentially where you answer the question, “can we actually pull this off?” Spoiler alert: probably.

Since you’re fresh off your script writing, a good next step is doing breakdowns. Make a document or spreadsheet of every element of your script. This will then become your shopping list as you move forward in the production process. Elements include characters, locations, props, wardrobe, etc. For my breakdowns, I like to have the basic list, plus a version that’s organized by characters and locations. This will be super useful during *real* preproduction when you’re preparing your schedules, because you’re almost certainly not going to film in order of your script. In reality, film schedules are driven by when you can get the correct group of people in the designated location. Knowing who needs to be where for the whole story will be invaluable for those decisions.

Filmmaking is a collaborative process and at this point you’re going to want to start bringing more people on board. If you haven’t done much film production before, find a trusted person who has, and make them a producer. The producer’s job is to know what’s going on at every level of production and make sure each task gets completed. The most valuable quality in a producer is experience in film, even if they’ve never actually held the role of “producer” before. They’ll provide a vital perspective and knowledge-base for turning your awesome script into an awesome show. They’ll fill in blanks you might not even realize were there, and suggest shortcuts to make your life easier.

Most projects have multiple producers, all with different strengths. A dream team would consist of someone with film experience, someone who’s really organized, and someone who has a big network. Sometimes you’ll get an all-in-one, and sometimes you’ll mix-and-match. It really depends on who you know and how interested in the project they are. Your producer team is your lifeboat in a sea of uncertainty and stress, and you’re going to want to sign them on as early as possible.

You’re also going to want to find a director, because without them, there’s no one to actually film the thing. Maybe you’re considering directing the series yourself, and if that’s the case, good for you! Just know that directing consists of more than calling “action” and “cut”— it’s about visualizing every angle you need for each scene, paying attention to pacing and transitions, and coordinating and communicating every person on set. It’s also about having all the answers to everything happening at any given time. I don’t say this to deter you, just to clarify that being a director is a massive undertaking, and having someone confident in their film experience in this position is going to be invaluable.

Got your people? Great. Schedule a meeting, share your script, and collectively go through your breakdowns. The goal here,, remember, is to answer the question, “can we actually pull this off?”

This is when your more production-knowledgeable friends and partners will really help you out. They’ll be able to point out places where you’ve made the script too complicated, or why certain props and locations might be difficult to attain, and offer educated alternatives. A lot of the time, you can accomplish what you want with your story in simpler ways. You just need to understand what your options are, and having partners with more experience allow you to uncover those possibilities.

Now it’s time for what I’ll call “realistic rewrites” of your show, accounting for the resources you have available and the realities of what you can accomplish on a microbudget. This can be as simple as changing a location from a busy club to an apartment, or as drastic as cutting a character. Compromise is part of the process, so get used to killing your darlings and making sacrifices where you can in service of actually getting this project to the finish line. Once you make it big, you can plan to revisit those more ambitious ideas, and you’ll have the experience to know how to make them count.

Before you bring any more people on board, we have to talk about money, which we’ll do next week. To be clear, we don’t have any to give you. But we’ll help you understand your different options for funding or simply affording your production. See you then!


Bri Castellini is an award-winning filmmaker and the Community Liaison at Stareable, LB’s favorite hub for web series. Check out www.stareable.com to find and read reviews of thousands of web series, all in one place. For more great articles about the craft of web series, visit the Stareable blog.

Indie Video: Precipicio

We’ve been in an indie video kind of place this week at TVWriter™, exploring its potential, both creatively and business wise. The following indie video, by Wendy Eduarte, is less than 2 minutes long, but it has had a huge effect on those here who’ve seen it.

FWIW, we’ve never been certain of what “art” really is…but all of us think this could be it:

Life is…ephemeral, and when least expected things come to an end.
This short animation touches on somebody going through their daily routine, while realizing they are going to die at the end of this day.

 wendyeduarte.com/#/precipicio/

Web Series: ‘The Call Room’

At last! A web comedy series set in an arena that has nothing to do with showbiz. We don’t know about you, but TVWriter™ definitely has been waiting for something like this.

Especially a something that’s, you know, funny as hell. Take the first episode, for example:

THE CALL ROOM
Created by Adam Carr
Written by Adam Carr & Craig Tovey
Directed by Craig Tovey
Produced by Nic Shafer

Starring
Adam Carr
Jonathan Schwartz
Alexa Rose
Nathaniel Meek
& Sean Harrison Jones

Original Music by Jonathan Schwartz & OMBB

© 2016 Sweetboy Productions

Discover more about The Call Room at the following highly informative locations:

http://www.callroomseries.com

http://www.vid.me/callroomseries

http://www.youtube.com/user/thecallroomseries

http://www.facebook.com/callroomseries

And they’re doing the Twitter thing too, of course: http://www.twitter.com/callroomseries

Indie Video Makers – Have You Discovered ‘New Form?’

New Form is a digital studio/production company that modestly says about itself that it “creates entertainment for the digital generation. We develop, produce and distribute original scripted series created by some of the best storytellers from around the world for an online audience.”

And, yes, New Form does in fact do that. But the way it does, oh, man, that’s something else. See, they give new creators money, but instead of taking over the creative process as a result, New Form actually sits back and ever-so-gracefully enhances it.

Here’s an example of the kind of gold their “Inclubator” series for new talent has discovered and brought out to the world:

And another one:

Whether you’re a fan who wants to be entertained and inspired by New Form’s latest production or an aspiring film maker looking for that last push you need to make your masterpiece, it’s definitely worth your while to find out more about this “New Form of Entertainment:” HERE:

YouTube Channel

Facebook

Absolutely Killer Website

Web Series: ‘Bill, the Therapist’

The interweb series world is blossoming with excellent series these days, especially with short episode comedies that expose most cable channel and entertainment website “humor” as naked emperors who wouldn’t know fine clothing even if they had it.

One of the best new web comedy series to come along recently is Bill the Therapist. This TVWriter™ minion is going to give it our highest possible recommendation:

“Watch this fucker, goddammit! You’ll be very, very, very glad!”

A great place to start is right here:

And you can watch more HERE

A very informative article on Bill, the Therapist and how it came to be is HERE

Best Puppet TV Show You’ll Ever See

The puppet series for those who hate puppets. Don’t believe us? Check this out:

See what mean?

Now are you getting it?

Two seasons of Callie & Izzy await.

See ’em HERE

And HERE

Read a very cool analysis HERE