Paula Rhodes: Actor, Producer, Mom, Founding Member of the 5'2" & Under Club!


(Paula Rhodes) #1

Hi, guys!

Thanks for having me : ) I’ve loved being a part of the webseries community for the past decade! I first joined Brett Register and Rick Rey in producing A Good Knight’s Quest, then brought our life-long love of the comic Elfquest to life in ElfQuest: A Fan Imagining with Stephanie Thorpe, hosted What’s Trending, IAWTV Awards carpets in Vegas, Endless Summer for Capital One, and the 2016 HollywebFest Awards, judged The Geekie Awards and other webseries fests including the St Louis Film Fest currently, played in Hollywood Wasteland, Just Us Guys, QVG and Knight in Hyrule for Machinima, joined the cast of Social Medium, The New Adventures of Peter & Wendy (joining the production team in s2 & 3), created Casting Doubt, and now am gearing up Fictional Fares. The ability to be a storyteller online is something I’m very thankful for. It has given me some of my dearest friends, stellar footage, new skills, a wonderful community, some lovely awards, and confidence to move forward with things like writing/directing my first feature film.

There’s so much I still have to learn, but bring on your questions! I feel pretty solid about chatting all things:

*following your dreams related (and the fears/judgement you face to do so)

*producing

*acting

*life-balance

*parenting (I’m a momma to 2 little guys under 3)

*and general adulting as an artist.


We've got an AMA for that!
(Bri Castellini) #2

Hey Paula! So awesome to have you here today! My first question is… how did you get into filmmaking, and specifically web series as a format, in the first place? Was it on purpose you found web series, or did it just kind of keep happening until it became a trend in your career?


(Bri Castellini) #3

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(Pia) #4

I loved New Peter and Wendy!! Did you know the team behind it before joining the cast?


(Meg Carroway) #5

You mentioned you joined the production team of Peter and Wendy in season 2 and 3… what led to that? And what new did you do on the team? You were primarily an actress in season 1, right?


(Blair Hunter) #6

Please give me following-your-dreams advice, Paula!!


(Paula Rhodes) #7

Well, there have been some happy accidents along the way, but my move into online content was purpose driven. Way back in 2008 my friend Cathy Baron had appeared in a successful Canadian webseries (first time I’d heard the word) and she began taking me to the Tubefilter meetups. I met SO many of my now peers and close friends there, and we started crafting a horror series called Final Cut. Tho we didn’t do more than shoot the teaser for that, we did end up connecting with more creators and got ourselves cast in a few more things. Then I introduced Brett Register to his now-wife Jamie, he called to see if I’d like to be in and produce a show for an Escapist contest for him, I googled what that meant and we did it! We won, and had a blast making A Good Knight’s Quest. By then I was hooked, anytime the “actor blues”/impatience hit in mainstream media, I’d turn to creating to feed my soul. I got to try on so many hats and play with so many people, it’s been such a lovely part of my life.


(Paula Rhodes) #8

Hi! Thank you, I loved it too! I knew Jenni Powell from the web world : ) I actually submitted myself for that, got called in to audition, and ended up booking Wendy. I was overjoyed! After filming s1 and helping put together the premiere party and press they asked me to join the production team for s2 and s3, now they’re my Pan Fam : )


(Jaime Lancaster) #9

Welcome to Stareable, Paula!! I would love to ask you more about producing! I’m an aspiring producer and sometimes I feel so overwhelmed by how much there is to do with so little money available. What has been your experience raising funds for a project? What avenues do you recommend for total newbies?


(Paula Rhodes) #10

Yep, just an actress in s1. Then they had need of a producer for s2 (we lost one to a TV show) and it happened to be in my skill set. I’m like a “mom” producer, whatever needs doing I do. I location scout, wrangle cast, do union paperwork, suggest crew, give my advice, reach out to sponsors, plan parties and press, make companion shows, keep people warm, dry, clothed, and fed.


(Pia) #11

What changed between seasons (other than your new role and obviously the story)? Anything you guys added/tweaked based on experience and new opportunities?


(Paula Rhodes) #12

Do it! You’ll be happier, and you only get this one life. It can be challenging at first, but dumber people than us do it daily. Find a thrival job to make it work until you make your living doing what you love. Mitigated risk is the name of my game.


(Bri Castellini) #13

Have you always produced and acted, or was producing new?


(Marc L) #14

Hello, Paula, thank you very much for being here. I am an actor and I would like any advice you may have for being an actor on very low budget sets. I have had the displeasure of some very unprofessional experiences and though I like the idea of working on independent productions, I have not had the best outcomes from them before.


(Meg Carroway) #15

Ooooo can you expand on this?


(Matt Newcomb) #16

Hi Paula, has your career changed by becoming a parent? Asking for a friend…


(Paula Rhodes) #17

Hi! This answer might require a novel hehe. It can be overwhelming! Much like raising kids, there’s no one right way to go about it. Some projects scream for a sponsorship deal, others are perfect for crowdfunding, some need to be self financed so you can control it and focus on it, some are great for pitching to the bigger leagues. I will say it’s always a bit stressful, not my favorite part, but you have multiple irons in the fire so that if one isn’t ready yet, you pop it back in until it is and go on to the next (to not go insane). For a first time project? Make magic with what you have (self finance) and then maybe put it on a crowdfund for finishing funds? Make it a calling card type project. Congrats and welcome to producing regardless!


(Blair Hunter) #18

Do you have any recommendations for “thrival” jobs? I’m graduating soon and am not really sure where to put my energies so I can have as much time and as much expendable income as possible for the whole dream side of things!!


(Jaime Lancaster) #19

Haha thank you so much!! So if I’m self-financing (seems likely tbh) what’s your low budget, high quality secret? What do you prioritize so it CAN be a calling card?


(Jane) #20

How is hosting different/unique from acting? Do you have to be an actor to do it well?