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.
Starting From … Now! is an online drama that explores the lives of four inner-Sydney lesbians as they struggle to work out who they are, find a place where they belong, and maybe even find someone to love along the way.
Set in Sydney, Australia, Starting From … Now! stars Bianca Bradey, Sarah de Possesse, Rosie Lourde, and Lauren Orrell and was created and directed by award-winning filmmaker and writer, Julie Kalceff.
Why should people watch your series?
People should watch Starting From … Now! because it’s highly addictive, beautifully acted and well-written. It has all of the elements of the high-quality drama you find on network television but in accessible 7-10 minute episodes freely available on the internet. It also offers an alternative to mainstream representations of women in regards to sexuality and ethnicity.
What do you want audiences to take away from your series?
I want audiences to become engrossed in the drama and not the sexuality of the characters. I want audiences to see that even though these characters are lesbians, their sexuality doesn’t define them. They’re complicated characters who make bad choices, just like all people. They have the same relationship dramas as heterosexuals and they fight about the same things.
Is making your characters mysterious an overall important part of the series?
It’s not so much a matter of making them mysterious, but more about only revealing aspects of the characters as they become relevant or important to the narrative. In a short-form drama, economy of storytelling is crucial.
Is your series an ongoing project? If so can you give us some clues about what comes next?
It is an ongoing project. We’ve released three seasons to date and will be shooting seasons four and five later in the year. In the upcoming seasons we’re looking to expand the story world and explore issues not usually dealt with in online drama.
How long have you been making web series for?
I’ve been working on Starting From … Now! for almost two years. Prior to that I was one of the writer/directors on another web series called The Newtown Girls.
What was the most difficult challenge you had to overcome in production, and how did you go about it?
Like most independent productions, we had very little money. This was perhaps the most difficult challenge. When people are volunteering their time and talent, you need to schedule around them and you need to work with a very small crew. At times, it also meant compromising on things such as locations, set design and costume. Everyone who has worked on the series has been extremely generous. We wouldn’t have been able to make it without their generosity and talent.
What can traditional media like film and TV learn from series like Starting From Now?
Traditional media like film and TV can learn there’s an audience for women-centric drama, that there’s a demand to see women in more diverse roles than just the supportive wife or temptress. They can also learn that characters do not need to be defined by their sexuality or ethnicity. Not all people in Australia are white, male and heterosexual. Audiences want the stories they see on screen to be a more accurate representation of the world they live in. The fact that Starting From … Now! has amassed over 13 million views in 14 months is proof of this.
Please tell us a quirky and/or interesting fact about yourself or team that’s unrelated to your web series?
Rosie Lourde and Sarah de Possesse, whose characters are in a relationship in Starting From … Now!, have played sisters in another production and Lauren Orrell and Sarah de Possesse who play friends in Starting From … Now! have played lovers in another short film.
Starting From…Now! on the web:
Watch Starting From…Now!
Starting From…Now! on Facebook
Starting From…Now! on Twitter
Starting From…Now! on Instagram
Starting From…Now! on Tumblr
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La Trobe University is Melbourne WebFest’s exclusive learning partner.