Alex Dobrenko - Creator / Writer / Actor / Anxious Human Bean - AMA!

Hey Alex! waves Welcome and thanks so much for taking the time to share your knowledge and advice on web series production. Have you figured out any way to potentially make this web series, and other filmmaking projects, financially sustainable? If so, how can web series creators do that - based on your experience?

3 Likes

Oh yeah Bri linked this article in another thread- I’ll check it out and get back to ya :slight_smile: Thanks! (separately, I guess, is social media your big takeaway? What about email, email newsletters, supplemental content, live events, anything like that?)

1 Like

And how did you manage to secure investors for DISTANCE?

1 Like

Thanks! Appreciate that. We had 2 writers (1 male, 1 female) from our writer’s team take on each episode after we outlined the entire season. Then we read thru it all, I gave big and small picture notes, then everyone rewrote. Then we read thru it again, then people rewrote again. Then I rewrote it all as needed. Then I got feedback from a few key confidantes, and then I rewrote. And then we shot it during which we rewrote all the time. And then we rewrote again during editing.

Did I say rewrite enough?

2 Likes

THIS IS SO HELPFUL THANK YOU!!!

2 Likes

Your team. Find people who are awesome and who care as much as you do. And keep things small. Contained. It doesn’t cost a ton to make something look beautiful. The key is what you say ‘no’ to - we had to cut entire episodes because they didn’t make sense financially. So just know what the heart of the show is and keep that. For us, that was their relationship - the interactions of Sam and Emily. Everything else could go, but if we kept that, we were cruising.

2 Likes

haha ummmmmm don’t give line reads. I hate those.

Don’t think about it as acting. Think about it as who is this person. Make it a conversation. Let the actor take chances. encourage failure, encourage risk. We are here to experiment and fuck around. If you are calm, they will be calm. If you are stressed, they will be stressed.

Love em like family, and youll be fine. I think directors can go one of two ways, towards love or towards hate - go towards love.

3 Likes

He answered earlier in the thread I think :slight_smile:

1 Like

@HailstoneHarper unsubtleCOUGH

4 Likes

lmao thanks Bri!

3 Likes

Treat it like a business. Have a really good business plan for how you will get a return, and understand that the risks are still high. MORE THAN ANYTHING know who your audience is. If you know who they are, and can connect with them, everything else (I think), becomes very easy.

Everyone wants a sure thing in this town, so give them one. Once you come with an audience, no one can stop you.

2 Likes

Alright folks that’s our hour. HUGE big thank you to @Alex_Dobrenko for being here and being so lovely today! I’m sure I’m not alone when I say we’d love to see you in the forums more often :slight_smile:

Check out his new series Distance here:

5 Likes

Thank you Alex!

2 Likes

WHAT AN HOUR JUST WENT BY?? have I missed any questions?? God it feels like 5 minutes. Y’all ask good questions :blush:

3 Likes

thanks man! good luck with everything!

3 Likes

just mine I think but it was like a weird phrase so :slight_smile:

2 Likes

Ah hi Meg! Yeah so…its all important? Just depends on what is available to you. We did a few live screenings, which I think were super important. And e-mail newsletters. I would pick a few key areas and dive deep on them. Versus doing everything.

Like late in the 4th quarter before we released, I decided to try and get us on Tumblr. It was a disaster. The kids these days! So I just said “ok, we gotta let that go.” and we did.

You can’t be everywhere all the time. And you don’t need to be!

3 Likes

SIGNAL. BOOST.

1 Like

Thanks!!

1 Like

YALL ! Thank you so much for having me - that was genuinely fun and reminded me that maybe I do know more than absolutely nothing (as you all do too!).

I gotta run catch a flight but I’ll check back here later if you have more questions. Also please feel free to email me with anything you wanna chat about - WE GOTTA HELP EACH OTHER - alex.dobrenko@gmail.com.

And of course I gotta keep up my hustle and say - please watch distance! www.distancetheseries.com.

4 Likes