Chris O'Brien - Web, Film, TV, and Stage Actor - AMA!

(Sunny Larkson) #21

Cooooool!!! Do you ever see yourself writing a web series (or a short film!) for yourself? I know you’re a writer, and I would love to watch that!

(Kate Hackett) #22

Fun fact: Chris sent in like 80 takes. We watched them all. (but I also kind of wrote Ewan with him in mind, so really I’m just a big jerk)

(Bri Castellini) #23

I cannot express how happy it makes me that you two are friends due to third party Twitter harassment on your behalf. That’s an amazing story.

(ps- no one take this as support for Twitter harassment, from me or Stareable.)

(Bri Castellini) #24

That… does not surprise me. On either end of that.

(Chris O'Brien 🤖) #25

Hi! Thanks for joining in!! And thanks for the congratulations.

Budget affects everything - so it’s hard to separate that, but they all basically operate the same way, depending on the style of the thing you’re shooting. I’ve mentioned this as advice before, but for efficiency and safety, almost all sets function basically the same, regardless of the resources. This is so people know what their roles and responsibilities are, so that communication is expedited, and everything is as streamlined as possible.

Other than that, there are just way more people working on a traditional commercial or TV show. And the catering at lunch is amazing - just really <<chef’s kiss>>

(Jaime Lancaster) #26

Hello! I’ve never seen any of your shows but I will look into them after this because you seem awesome! I love how detailed your answers are :slight_smile: On the subject of detailed answers… Any advice for first time web series actors? Things they should keep an eye out for, ask for, that kind of thing?

(Chris O'Brien 🤖) #27

Honestly - the truth is that on the series I’ve been in with her, she’s usually wearing like four different hats, as a writer, producer, co-director in some scenes, and actor. So working with her is all about business. You show up, you get the work done, and then you move on. She’s a pro who knows how to get things made.

(Kate Hackett) #28

This is a very kind way of saying 0 fun.

(Meg Carroway) #29

That makes sense! Thanks so much! Any ideas on other options for funding that you’ve seen, aside from crowdfunding?

(Jaime Lancaster) #30

Oh my gosh you guys are too funny :rofl::rofl::rofl:

(Chris O'Brien 🤖) #32


Honestly, that can look a lot of different ways. I’ve talked about this in other discussions (Bri, please link for me!!) But here are three quick rules:

  1. Communicate well and set clear expectations, meet them, and then provide a little more.
  2. Respect actor’s time - understand that sitting and waiting to be used is not easy or relaxing. It’s more like being stuck at the doctor’s office.
  3. Give room to socialize and to rehearse.

After the basics (food, water, shelter, bathroom), 3 is probably the most overlooked. It’s not always possible to provide it, for understandable reasons, but if you aren’t paying actors or aren’t paying a lot and you’re asking a lot in terms of time commitment, it can really help morale if your actors don’t feel like they are trapped in a library, a few feet away from set, scared to talk, move, bite into a crunchy chip, or whatever.

Space to have some privacy is another nice luxury that more indie sets could probably provide. It can be exhausting for some actors, especially introverts, to be stuck in a group area for hours having to make small talk and stuff and then suddenly be asked to get to set and perform.

For me, the ideal indie set can look a lot of ways, but after the basics, I definitely think having my own space to make a little camp for myself, away from things, where I can feel like I’m out of the way and I can have a little privacy is really nice.

(Chris O'Brien 🤖) #33

I am currently writing a webseries, I’ve finished co-writing a TV Pilot, I have co-written a short film which is in pre-production right now (I’m not very involved at this point), I have written a short horror film, and I’ve written two feature-length screenplays - both are still only first drafts and both are terrible haha.

Eventually, some of the stuff I’ve written will definitely get made and I’ll promote the hell out of it. If you follow me anywhere, it will be hard to miss!

(Kallum Weyman) #34

Hello Chris, as an actor how do you feel when being approached for the lower budget, indie projects, epsiecally web stuff? Did you expect a lower or maybe quality level and you where surprised by the quality of what you were involved with, as in the writing, direction or production in general?

(Bri Castellini) #35


Thread on what makes a set seem professional

Thread on similar themes that Chris weighed in on

(Chris O'Brien 🤖) #36

Kate is leaving out the part where it was the director who wasn’t entirely sold on me and kept wanting to see more. But yes I was maybe… uh… overzealous?

(Chris O'Brien 🤖) #37

thank you!!

(Bri Castellini) #38

FUCK YES I’m already hyped and I know literally nothing else about it

(Kate Hackett) #39

Excited! I like to think you were excited. :slight_smile:

(Bri Castellini) #40

We started a bit late so if Chris is having fun maybe he’ll stick around, but technically, that’ll do it for today’s AMA! Huge big thanks to @microbrien for being here and wonderful today! You can find him on his website:

And on Patreon!

(Meg Carroway) #41

Thanks Chris! This was a really informative one!