James Brent Isaacs and Omar Najam- Making That Web Series

(Kernen Wing ) #41

Omar: what brought you to, and how did you manage starting the SunnydaleStudyGroup podcast and how do you manage to fit it in with all of the other things you do?

(omar najam) #42

Oh no I can’t choose!!! These are all our fictional babies! I will say, I think I’ve had this image of Gregor in my mind since the day I read Metamorphosis in my junior year English class. He’s going to be moody and whiny and well I guess me in the mornings. I will definitely be sending that episode to my teachers.

(Bri Castellini) #43

Can you expand on this? Especially when you’re not working with an established brand, how do you define, find, and cultivate an online audience?

(Blair Beveridge) #44

The webseries is my favourite medium to deliver content, but it has taken a bit of a beating over the last few years. What do you think needs to be done to make it as viable and appreciated as it once was?

(omar najam) #45

I was James’s stunt double on the show by the way. No one ever talks about it but I did all of his intense stunts. I was also his hair guy. You know how everyone said he had nice hair in that show? That was me. I deserve that credit.


(omar najam) #46

OKAY LISTEN THEY WANTED TO PUT ME IN THE TRUNK AT ONE POINT. I’ll let James reply but everyone needs to know they were going to throw me in the trunk! Like a bag of laundry or a spare tire!

(Sunny Larkson) #47

I wondered why his hair looked so much better in certain scenes!! :wink:

(Meg Carroway) #48

That was kinda what I was assuming was happening!! IF it’s roomy enough with a monitor… I mean… also where do you hide audio/mount camera so you’re getting the most coverage without sacrificing quality?

(James Brent Isaacs) #49

Hi J,
We wanted to have as many of the bases covered as possible before we created our campaign. Cast, locations, crew, everything. We wanted the only thing standing in our way to be our budget. Which it is! We hit the ground running with our cast announcements first, and since then have been promoting perks, as well as announcing various charities attached to every episode, so that we’re not the only ones benefiting from the show. We also reached out to as many blogs, podcasts and websites as we could before we launched so that as many places could spread the word about us when we did.

(Chris Hadley) #50

Hey Blair! waves Great to see you here too!

(Blair Beveridge) #51

gotta support my boys :slight_smile: I really love this project and really want to see it made :slight_smile:

(Bri Castellini) #52

I was gonna ask a question about this, actually! What is your general marketing strategy, and what does your marketing outreach look like?

(Chris Hadley) #53

How do you and @JamesBrentIsaacs deal with each other’s feedback during the writing process? What’s the “give and take” like as you guys bounce off ideas at that time, and does one idea usually win out over another?

(Kernen Wing ) #54

is there any chance my my years of loyalty and love might earn me a second chance at the immediately sold out Production Journal perk? and what all will there be in the ones that sold out? will they be hand written and copied, typed out, or mixed media?

(omar najam) #55

Oh boy, haha I’ll keep it short but expect a book on the subject by the end of this project. There are going to be more rewrites than you ever expected. You are going to love notes because they take pressure off of your brain to know what is right and what doesn’t work. Weekly meetings sounds like a lot but it’s actually not enough. Find someone who loves organizing ideas and to-do lists and documents. But first and foremost, the biggest thing I learned was to write down what the show is, why you’re making this story and what change you want to see after this show is done. Having that keystone will make everything in your life so much easier because at the end of the day you can say “this show is about HARMONY” or “this show is about FINDING COMEDY IN SAD SITUATIONS” and every choice you’re making in your campaign and your production and your marketing can revolve around that.

(omar najam) #56

This is such a beautiful question! So in college my trusty Canon ZR90 broke and I couldn’t shoot videos in the wild anymore so I started making videos on my iMac in my kitchen, which is how I got into shooting vlogs. I fell in love with the process and then when I moved to Los Angeles, Mia Resella and I thought it’d be fun to make a channel dedicated to life advice as we were learning life lessons. But since we were huge nerds we instead decided to make it less of an Apartment Therapy thing and more of how to save money while being geeky. When Geek&Sundry announced the vlogs search, Mia called me while I was working at the Apple Store and we agreed it would be a good idea to submit. And it was the best idea! I can’t believe we got picked, we’re these two little weirdos that just like reading comics and making movies with toy dinosaurs. But we found out after the vlogs search was done and we had to keep it a secret until VidCon when we got to hop on stage with Cristina, Amy, a few of the other vloggers, and of course Felicia. Then we went to the Jazz Kitchen in Downtown Disney for a friend’s birthday and I had myself the martiniest of martinis. Hendricks gin. Two olives. And the fireworks went off and we sat there and took it all in.

(Jane) #57

Thanks!! Next question: How do you get people excited for a show before it’s officially a real thing?

(Kernen Wing ) #58

What are your favorite films and what have you taken from them, style elements, technique, etc, to incorperate into your own work?
And the same question for books. Which type of books are your favorites and how have they influenced the way you write?

(Jane) #59

I feel like everyone is really missing an opportunity so I guess I’ll just do it: James… tell us about martial arts! In relation to film, I guess, specifically! lol

(omar najam) #60

This is a great question, Elias, and I will do my best to answer it because I would need to solve for factors like wind resistance and sliding friction on the rails, whether both trains have a similar (negligible delta) value of friction, the original velocity of the pineapple, the diameter of the pizza, and, of course, what planet we’re running this model on. But at a cursory glance, I’d have to say I would be convinced right at the beginning to get whichever option was cheaper.