Introducing …. SPARKS!
So for the last month or so, Lisa and I have shamelessly been touting our own recent work. Is this our natural instinct? NO. Was I taught to talk about myself nonstop, providing photos, silly anecdotes, imdb links and other fodder? NO. (No! Says my mom.) No, no, no.
But guess what? It’s the new world for indie filmmakers. For years now, but in the last year or so more than ever, filmmakers have had to very carefully strategize every aspect of distribution. Partnering with a distribution company, if one is lucky enough to actually get one, as opposed to simply handing over a film, is simply the new way it is. (A recent indieWIRE event had a panel of experts generously doling out twenty great tips on distribution and festivals. The level of strategizing, which implicitly includes talking up your work, is an example of the level of involvement I’m talking about here. Read the summary here.) So with chin-up spirit, and not complaining at all, because who doesn’t like to retell what unimaginable feat they accomplished on the set, or how they survived the perils of micro-budget filmmaking, or how fabulous, gorgeous, talented and fashionable their actors are … introducing SPARKS.
It’s a web series. We made it at an achingly slow pace over three years, on weekends. It’s awesome. It’s like nothing you’ve seen on the web. It’s slow, it’s warm, it’s weird. It features nary a trash-talk gag or a sex joke. There’s significant attention paid to the frame. And if you are at all a conscious, communicative human being who over-relies on technology and reaches for the iphone before you leave your bed each morning, it’s for you.
So here’s the premise: 30 year-old Sarah Sparks, of Manhattan, is sick of temping. She decides to follow her bliss (think wires) and become a freelance technologist. This means not only helping New Yorkers fix whatever tech disaster is plaguing whatever device doesn’t work, but also ‘fixing’ whatever human emotional problem is getting in the way of technical harmony. Sound like a shrink for your tech? Check. There are six episodes up NOW on this very website, SundanceChannel.com, and we want you to watch them, because they are funny … and very importantly, they are short. Sarah falls in love with a three prong adapter. Sarah disciplines a computer. Sarah feng-shui’s a laptop. She also uncovers the beginnings of a massive mysterious force that is surging through Manhattan (she thinks … this is the cliff hanger part of episode 6).
The series stars the amazing Sarah Hudnut.
You’re gonna fall in love with how she deftly plays this character with her straight-forward, alluring charm. It also features André Holland as her boyfriend Leon, who is both cool and super caring.
There are other characters too – special guests, a GURU (played by Mary Beth Peil), and interviews with regular ol’ New Yorkers on the street.
Oh, we made a feature this summer, based on the series. But we blogged about that already. (Here.) I’m sure we’ll blog even more … fulfilling the new duties of indie filmmakers.
Watch SPARKS here.