You don’t cross the family, especially when they’re vampires. This week, The IndieNet and Beyond joins the mob… the Vampire Mob. More news and web series episodes, plus an interview with writer/director/editor Joe Wilson and actor John Colella from Vampire Mob. WARNING: The language in this interview may not be suitable for all humans.
“We are all famous to a few people.”
Those are the words that begin the unpredictably funny season one of the vampire meets mob comedy series called Vampire Mob. It comes from the mind of award-winning filmmaker and comedian, Joe Wilson.
“Vampire Mob is about a hitman who is also a vampire that just found out his mother-in-law is moving in for eternity,” described Joe Wilson.
It’s an interesting concept that’s execution goes into an unexpected direction. I had to know where such a concept of blending mob with vampire came from and it turns out that the concept had an unexpected origin.
“I was working as a private investigator until last year. I was working in the intellectual property field, where essentially I would have to get information for lawyers at giant law firms and giant companies that had to do with trademarks or patents… The reason a lawyer hires a private investigator is because we can legally misrepresent ourselves and a lawyer can’t,” explained Joe. “So I was misrepresenting myself to someone regarding a trademark that had to do with the mob. It wasn’t actually like the actual organization, just the name mob was part of it. It was July of ’09 and Johnny Depp had his gangster movie out [Public Enemy]… and I joked, ‘Hey the vampire thing’s huge and mafia stuff seems to never go away very long, where is the vampire mob thing.’ I was like holy shit!”
John Colella (CSI: NY, The West Wing), a graduate of the Goodman School of Drama, plays Don Grigioni, the hitman who finds himself facing a newly vamped mother-in-law who is moving in with him and his wife. John leads a cast of very talented actors, many of whom you have probably seen before: Reamy Hall (Criminal Minds, General Hospital), Marcia Wallace (The Simpsons, The Bob Newhart Show), Chris Mulkey (Twin Peaks, Friday Night Lights) and Kirsten Vangsness (Criminal Minds).
On March 11th you’ll see John Colella in the upcoming Sebastian Guitierrez film Girl Walks Into a Bar. It’s the first feature length film made for YouTube and will be available to watch for free. John will be starring with a stellar cast: Carla Gugino, Rosario Dawson, Danny DeVito, Zach Quinto, and Vampire Mob‘s Reamy Hall.
“It’s actually the first little role I’ve had that’s more about character than just moving the story along type thing. I’m excited for that to come out,” said John.
How did Joe manage to convince so many talented actors to join Vampire Mob? First it started with John, his neighbor in Hollywood who became his friend after working on various projects together.
“I told John, ‘What do you think about this as a short?’” Joe said. After explaining the concept, John wasn’t so sure about it. John was actually surprised that Joe even wanted to do something with vampires, because Joe knows almost nothing about vampires. They joke that their wives, who love Twilight, were some of their sources for information along with a Vampire For Dummies book. But they are quick to point out that their vampires are nothing like Twilight vampires.
“Our twitter followers are anti-sparkle. They like us because we are anti-sparkle,” John made sure to point out.
But Joe explained to John that the show was a very different kind of show than what you would expect from a vampire mob series. The show was at first planned to be a stage play and later would turn into a web series.
“It’s really more about character and family. I think a lot of people don’t watch the show, I think because… some people hear Vampire Mob and are like ‘Hey Lou we’re fucking vampires and we’re in the mafia…yeah!’ It’s so not that show.”
“The idea of making this show was really… I was just so sick to fucking death of writing stories and spending years to try and please some giant corporate conglomerate cluster fuck so they could say yes to my story,” said Joe. “I just wanted to make something and tell a story and tell it direct to an audience, because that’s what I love about this is that you can do your own distribution. But the other thing about it is you don’t know if anyone is going to like it or watch it.”
Vampire Mob also had a unique distribution approach with their view-ransom method.
“I stole it from Stephen King and Greg Stolze. The idea was that the first episode had to be viewed 5,000 times before the second one was released. That took about a month I think. It was very stressful for everybody involved, but we’re doing it for the second season,” said Joe.
Second season is currently in the works; filming is set to begin in March. Joe managed to rope in even more talented actors to join the cast, including Tony-Award Winning Actress, Rae Allen (The Sopranos, Seinfeld) and Retta Sirleaf (Parks and Recreation).
“It’s a much, much bigger story in the second season. The second season is twice as long and twice as many characters. The first season really just sets everything up and the second season dives right in from where we left off. It’s way more of a roller coaster ride,” said Joe.
Joe couldn’t say enough good things about the fans of the show and their support. So far over $6,100 has been raised for season two, meaning the standard definition cameras gets replaced by an HD camera.
“The V Mob or V Mobbers as they are now called, they… 97 people donated the money so we could get the camera so we could shoot in HD. The audience of this show… they rock! Letters, emails, cards, presents… it’s been unbelievable how much the audience for this show… it’s like they get it. They get this isn’t a TV pilot. I’m not walking around town going ‘wouldn’t this make a great TV show?’ Because it wouldn’t make a great TV show. I think it makes a better web series because we can do whatever we want. I need this language, I need to be able to swear a lot. It’s the only thing that makes it real.”
After finishing season one, what advice does Joe have for future web series creators?
“I would listen to everybody and always keep in mind that there are a lot of people that call themselves experts. There are a lot of people who are mining the miners. Which is a term that came out of the Gold Rush. The people that made the most money during the Gold Rush were the people who sold pick axes to the people looking for gold. And there are a lot of web series people that are looking for gold. Keep in mind that this is still new and that this isn’t still figured out. Don’t pay anyone to tell you how to make a web series,” said Joe. “How many times in your life are you going to get this much freedom to tell the story you want to tell without anyone fucking it up? That is what you can do making a web series, indie TV, whatever you want to call it. You can do whatever you want and say whatever you want.”
It’s still to early to know for certain, but Joe hopes to have season two of Vampire Mob ready for the virtual airwaves by June. Until then, you can check out the first two episodes below. You can find the rest of the episodes at: http://www.VampireMob.com
A quick update for those wondering about progress on my own web series. Reality On Demand finished auditions and we are now making the tough choices for casting season one. Soon we’ll announce the cast and start making a scifi web series that will hopefully leave its mark in the web television community. I was so inspired by all of these chats with web series creators that I just had to create a web series as my next project.
Elsewhere On The Web…
Last week was Lazy Teenage Superheroes, this week it’s a trailer for an upcoming superhero web series called The Dirty Do Gooders.
Meanwhile… Great news for fans of Riese: Kingdom Falling! The fantasy-adventure steampunk web series is getting a television broadcast premiere April 9 at 9 p.m. ET on SPACE.
What I’m Watching… Are You?
Haywire – Episode 4 “The Situation”
The horror/scifi web series Haywire is back with an all new episode. They recently announced that they are joining KoldCast TV.
Mind’s Eye – Episode 10 “Practice Makes Perfect”
Illia and Darius remember an old friend now gone, while the rest of the Dreamweavers take the opportunity to hone their skills.
Throwing Stones – Episode 4 “Sticks and Stones”
Have you watched the new teen horror web series Throwing Stones? It’s a feature length horror screenplay adapted for the Internet.
Vampire Zombie Werewolf – Episode 6 “Wolves of Endearment”
There is tension in the marriage as the vampire guests arrive. Will the Producer escape? And even more importantly, will they think of a cool web series idea to impress the vampires?
That’s A Wrap
Got a web series, web comic, web… whatever, then I want to know about it. Contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
That’s a wrap for now. Take care friends. Until next time… marX out.
You can find me on twitter @MrMarx
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