Melbourne WebFest 2015: FÉMININ/FÉMININ (CAN)

26 June 2015

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Ahead of the third edition of Melbourne WebFest, we are profiling all the official selections that will be screening 10-12 July at Deakin Edge. 

FÉMININ/FÉMININ is a web series created by Chloé Robichaud and Florence Gagnon and made in Canada. The series aims to offer a new look at the universe of lesbians. The objective is to address the multiple facets of the daily lives of ten characters.

Tell us about what made you decide to film part of the series in documentary style, and part in fiction?
The “faux documentary” allowed real lesbians to have a voice, have a place in the project. It’s the only part that is improvised in the series. The actress knew the question beforehand and Chloe had given them a lead for the answers. Improvisation added certain spontaneity to the answers. Ariane Moffat had complete freedom on the answers she could give, since she was displaying her own reality.

This series unmasks common misrepresentations or stereotypes about being a lesbian, is this one of the reasons you created the series?
We wanted to give more visibility to Quebec’s lesbian community. We felt like we didn’t have any Ellen Degeneres, or any known celebrities who were OUT and ready to do something about it. There was a flagrant lack of models. FÉMININ/FÉMININ’s mission is not to represent every lesbian. There are way too many distinct communities inside our community. It is impossible to think that we were able to represent each of them. The more positive models there are, the easier it will be for girls to feel depicted. We wanted a realistic series; a series that was well thought of. It was important for us to talk about what we were going through, about our everyday lives. Made for and by the community, F/F explores different lesbian lives. It was a rewarding experience since we feel like the community really contributed.

What’s the magic formula for a successful web series?
We try to transmit our message with passion since it really reflects who we are, it’s our history. It’s more than a project for us, it’s part of our lives. We met so many interesting women who greeted us with their stories since the beginning of the adventure; it created dialogue. That’s why the series was and still is a big success.

In what ways do you utilise social media to further your brand?
We used social media to keep the community informed throughout the process and to make people feel involved. Whether it was to find extras, to introduce the actresses or to recruit for the documentary parts. It’s also from socio-financing and social networks that we raised funds for the pilot. The people involved became ambassadors of the project and when it came out, they all shared massively on social medias.

What is your favourite thing about making web series?
The web format is the best way for your project to gain popularity and for it to be available around the world. It’s amazing that it can be viewed by an unlimited number of people.

Describe the ultimate fan of your series?
The ultimate fan is one that participated in the project, while being an ambassador on social medias. We had parents of young lesbians who contacted us to thank us for helping their daughters blossom. It’s important to highlight that. That and the fact that not only lesbians showed an interest in our series, their entourage too!

What’s special or different about your series?
Our series is unique in the sense that it demystifies the lesbian community while being entertaining and pleasing to a larger public. It’s not only meant to be for lesbians.

How many people worked on this project?
12 actresses plus guest stars and a filming crew of around 20 people.



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La Trobe University is Melbourne WebFest’s exclusive learning partner.