Wednesday, 21 October 2015

4. TIME - how it evaporates

Time is a constant enemy that tortures deadlines. There is no doubt those who took/hacked our YouTube channel down did what they set out to do, which was give us extra work. It is for those unknown disasters, when work turns to survival that you have reservoirs of episodes ready to be uploaded. We are now back on YouTube, as well as many other platforms so the disaster made us grow stronger. All the links below and channels and pages below are back, they were all taken down.

This weekend (Oct 26th) we upload episode 23 of Shades Of Bad, but I have just today edited episode 38 which has been on the desk waiting for about 4 weeks because of our work turning to channel maintenance and survival. YouTube down is explained in another blog but the work became about functioning links away from YouTube that did not work for us, to Vimeo and Daily motion. Every mention on Twitter and Facebook, etc had to be changed. Now YouTube is back we have to remake links though the referrals that go to DailyMotion will stay, we like Daily Motion. The YouTube links will go back but our audience did move and we are finding new audiences starting from Episode 1.

Why were we taken down. I guess when we went into the charts it caused attention and a few others may have gone down a little, but we have stayed world top ten since the summer, so we thank everyone at We Love Soaps and Indie Series Network in the USA who also had extra work changing links to keep Shades in the race to be voted for. They had seen YouTube Channel removals before so had some very supportive words. Eventually it gets sorted.... eventually you get back.

So although we were taken down at about episode 16, episode 16 went straight up on Vimeo and Daily Motion and ZooliTV, and we never missed a week. We had about 32 finished episodes so could have not filmed for another 16 weeks and still been in front. The temptation is to just load everything when they are finished, but having been on Emmerdale for 26 years you learn to set a schedule, stay to it, and build the reservoir to stay in front.

Having just edited 38, I now jump to 43, the ones in-between are done. They were done out of order because they were ambitious episodes, a huge fight, a night shoot etc etc... Episode 43 is the first one we shot abroad, and the rushes have been on the drive for months. The UK side of that episode and the ones to 52 when I think Norway ends, start shooting at the weekend with our new star. He is an Olympian and we will start to leek that information next year. Coincidently, if you work out our schedule, you will see those episodes all release in the run up to the Rio Olympics - isn't that funny how these things happen. Then episodes 58 to 60 are the Barcelona episodes and again the Barcelona parts are done. They take us well into next summer.

We will then spend the time editing mega episodes, which is the joining together of three of four. Again that sounds easy, but it is not. The episodes are designed for a 3 minute slot, and are music heavy. They drive themselves as little programs. We edited the first seven together and whilst we all felt they worked better, the story seemed stronger, we noticed that the edit needed a little attention as there were repeat moments to go. The thing we noticed most was, the music then seemed too heavy. Mark Blackledge the composer who watched it separately in his studio in the East of England came back with the same comments.

As season 2 runs, it is all done, all ready. We are filming season 3 and we want it to be better. But, we are looking at new ideas for a second series.

We also have to get more involved with Maker Studios, and work more on the spin offs that we so desperately wish to add to the channels. We have so much experience in publishing which we feel can help the self publishers, just as we have learnt so much from the web publishers, us only having been in major film. So, do we still make films, YES ... and tomorrow I have a day away from Shades as I read a script I am to produce with two A list stars.

Team wise I have Buster editing an episode so he can see what he delivers as the director to the edit suit. The cast are thinking Christmas, Lynn (Wilma) is in panto. I am off to the USA with Doris ..... which means I will miss some of the great season's BAFTA voting screening, but having already seen Steve Jobs with Boyle, Sorkin, Fassbender, Winslet, Rogen, Daniel et al, and The Martian with Ridley Scott and Matt Damon all doing post screening Q&A's it has not been a bad start to the season.

To close, I thought we might be fully operational and on all platforms by the end of season 1 which has come and gone, I now think that is will take until the end of season 2 for me to get the whole TV channel fully running and have another series plus other content like our previous films Bula Quo, Freight, The Scarlet Tunic, The Usual Children, and Devil's Gate. Then we will have a channel with content. Two series is the exact length of the first book, Who Dies Today?

If you have questions, do send them to us. We have started a blog of FAQ.

Just to say, episode 23 is this weekend, and it is Halloween..... so, given we are a web series about three women, a kitchen and a serial killer it is about time someone died.