What makes a web series a success?
If the web series, now weekly TV series, Sanctuary is any example, its success lies in a devoted fan base, its creator Damian Kindler (the man behind Stargate SGI-1 and Stargate Atlantis), fantastical CGI-enhanced scenes and elaborate storylines and a cast that includes Amanda Tapping, Robin Dunne, Ryan Robbins and Christopher Heyerdahl. You can learn more about the series here.
If the web series is the highly popular three-part mini Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, from the creative mind of Joss Whedon, his equally talented brothers Zack and Jed Whedon and Jed’s girlfriend (nee wife) Maurissa Tancharoen, its success lies in the talented crew, the cast, which included Neil Patrick Harris, Nathan Fillion and Felicia Day and the worldwide fan base dedicated to all things Whedon-esque. To watch the worldwide sensation, go here.
If the web series is Riese: Kingdom Falling, from creators Ryan Copple and Kaleena Kiff and producers Galen Fletcher and Nicholas Humphries, its success is due to a devoted crew, a forward-thinking network – that being Syfy who took the web series under its fold, updating it and adding a voice over by Amanda Tapping – and a terrific cast that includes Christine Chatelain (Sanctuary), Sharon Taylor (Stargate Universe), Ben Cotton (Harper’s Island), Allison Mack (Smallville), Ryan Robbins and Emilie Ullerup (both of Sanctuary), Patrick Gilmore (Stargate Universe) and Alessandro Juliani (Battlestar Galactic). To learn more about Riese and see the episodes as they unfold, visit here.
If the webseries is The Guild, from the mind of Felicia Day, its success lies in the comedic timing of the cast, the witty writing by Day (who also plays the lead role in the series) and the incredibly entertaining world of online gamers. You can learn more about this long-running webseries here.
While the aforementioned web series are the more notable successes, that doesn’t mean they are the only web series available to viewers who want more than just the regular television fare. Warner Brothers seems to have a strong handle on providing web series with a variety of themes. Among the web series that the WB has on tap are the following:
Blood Cell – This webseries is from indie film director Eduardo Rodriguez (Open Grave) and is about Julie who must save her kidnapped friend before her cell phone dies.
Chadam – This 3D animated webseries is about Chadam, who lives as the “chosen one” in the hyper-stylized and exaggerated metropolitan island city of Vulture. His power of imagination is strong enough to physically change his environment and, therefore, his world to save it from evil.
Downers Grove – This webseries follows Alden, Brett, Pudge and Jodi – four friends who never grew up. When everyone their age went away to college, they stayed in the suburbs, always on the prowl for the next party and never far from disturbing the peace.
Exposed – This webseries follows a college student haunted by a hidden past, trying desperately to remain undercover when former associates hunt him down and threaten to expose the truth about who he really is.
High Drama – This webseries follow cast and crew of Freedom High School as they put on The Wizard of Oz.
Pushed – This webseries is about London who has it all, but who can she trust? Her sister, her father, her husband or her therapist? How far will she go when Pushed?
Rich Girl, Poor Girl – This webseries is about a wealthy Pacific Palisades girl and a low-income teen from Los Angeles who switch lives for a week to learn what makes us different… and what we all have in common.
Joni & Susanna – This webseries is about best frenemies Joni and Susanna.
Rockville, CA – This webseries, from Josh Schwartz and Alexandra Patsavas, is a contemporary, music-themed romantic comedy set in a fictional rock club in Los Angeles.
Sorority Forever – This webseries is about Phi Chi Kappa, the hottest sorority on campus. For every freshmen girl, getting in seems like a dream come true, but there are mysteries around every corner. Behind the sex, the drama, and the beautiful people lies a terrifying secret.
The Lake – This webseries, directed by Jason Priestley, is about six teens who come to Lake Eleanor for a summer of romance, reinvention and rivalry.
You can visit here to learn more about all of these webseries and to watch the episodes of any that interest you.
Two other webseries that might interest viewers are the following:
In Gayle We Trust is about Gayle Evans, a trusted American Family Insurance agent in the town of Maple Grove whose clientele ranges from sweet to sympathetic to outright bizarre. The series stars Elisa Donovan. You can learn more about this webseries and watch its episodes here.
Also, there is Vampire Mob, which is about a hitman who also happens to be a vampire. He turned his wife and his wife turned her mother, who is now moving in with them…for all of eternity. You can learn more about Vampire Mob here.
Musician Spotlight: Musician and singer Mat Kearney was born in Eugene, Oregon, but is now based in Nashville. He first picked up a guitar in his junior year of college and not that long after began writing songs, performing at coffee shops and making a small amount of money at that. Around this time, he met friend and future producer Robert Marvin, with whom he moved to Nashville with and collaborates with on his music. Mat has 7 EP’s under his belt as well as three studio albums – “Bullet” in 2004, “Nothing Left to Lose” in 2006 and “City of Black & White” in 2009. His next new album is expected to be released in 2011. He has had 4 top 20 hit singles on the Adult Top 40 charts and has toured with Keane, John Mayer, Sheryl Crow and Train and headlined the first ever VH1’s “You Oughta Know Tour” in 2007. His songs have been featured in quite a number of TV shows such as 30 Rock, Dirty Sexy Money, Kyle XY, The Unit, Without a Trace, Bones, Jericho, Friday Night Lights, Wildfire, What About Brian, One Tree Hill, Scrubs, The Closer, NCIS, Life Unexpected, The Vampire Diaries and Grey’s Anatomy. You can learn more about Mat Kearney here.