Blankverse Season 2
Blankverse Season 2
A Webseries about William Shakespeare and the great writers of his time re-imagined as modern day university students.
A Webseries about William Shakespeare and the great writers of his time re-imagined as modern day university students. Read more
About this project
In Season 1 of Blank Verse, Will Shakespeare was inspired by Hollywood darling Chris Marlowe to attend Bankside University. Shakespeare aspires to become a famous writer, but struggles to understand just what that means. Throughout the series he is constantly challenged by his best friend, the optimistic and wide-eyed Ben Jonson, to re-define his expectations and strive to be the greatest writer of this generation. Over 5 Acts, we were able to follow Shakespeare's journey as a struggling writer up until his inspiration for Romeo & Juliet - and now we want to continue to tell his story.
In Season 2 we will start with thematic inspiration from A Mid- Summer Night's Dream and pick up the next part of Shakespeare's story as he enter's his second year at Bankside University. The story will explore how each character deals with Chris Marlowe's death, delve deeper into Will's relationship with Henry and Mary, and see how the loss of their friend has affected the dynamic between Ben and Will. In addition we will further explore Shakespeare's personal struggles as he continues to grow as a writer, and look at the complex life he leads straddling the divide between his family life in Stratford and creative life at Bankside.
With $5,000 we are going to create a solid second season featuring the characters we fell in love with in season 1. The story will include 3 Acts worth of content split into 2-3 scenes or episodes per Act. We were really ambitious with the first season, and while we are really proud of what we created, we are also cognizant of what worked, and what needs tweaking as we move forward. We hope to be much more concise with our storytelling and create a cohesive arc over fewer episodes, including more integrated narrative between the different plots and a core focus on single narratives during longer individual Acts.
We had a really strong transmedia element to the first season that we want to continue to develop in the second. In addition to twitter accounts for our main characters, we will continue to develop Will Shakespeare's personal blog (WillShakespeareWrites.wordpress.com) as well as the student run newspaper The Messenger Speech. Both of these elements allow us to explore the world of the characters in real time beyond just the story told on screen, and connect with each character in a more intimate way. We will also build upon our audience integration into the story though various levels of interactivity.
With the kickstarter at $5,000 we can produce the basic story we want to tell, but of course we have ideas to expand beyond this initial goal. If we are able to achieve more than our target, we will not only add some amazing perks, but we can also deliver richer content.
$10,000 - Extend our season with 1 additional Act, accompanying transmedia content and longer episodes.
$15,000 - Hire additional production staff to expand our Transmedia and Production team, allowing us to tell a much richer and more complex story outside the episodes. We will also be able to put money toward supplemental equipment rentals or upgrades that would diversify our storytelling ability and make the entire story more dynamic.
$40,000 - Extended Length Season - We will make a FULL 20+ episode season of Blank Verse, using what we have learned during Season 1 to produce a tighter, richer story that covers an entire year at Bankside University.
$100,000 - At this stretch goal, we will approach Anne Hathaway professionally and make a serious offer of the cameo role of Anne Hathaway in Blankverse. We can not promise she will accept, but this level of funding will allow us to pursue her casting with a reasonable pitch and storyline. (We also have some amazing ideas for this!)
Risks and challenges
With any production the biggest issues we face are time and money. We have budgeted for a more condensed season to make the practical issues such as actor availability and design prep time as efficient as possible. This will also enable us to utilize our resources as best we can and increase the quality of the content that we deliver.
We use all of our own equipment, produce original graphics, music and scripts and have now become really familiar with the strength of what resources and talents we possess, so delivering a second season of content could be easily achieved. We also have all of the foundation already in place for the show after filming Season 1 and would be able to build upon and improve the quality of that which we have already produced.
Something that we learned from the first season, is that the challenges we encounter encourage us to be more creative storytellers. If we were ever dealing with limited actor schedules or location issues, we would work together to find the essence of the story and create the best we could with the resources at hand. With this in mind, we are confident that even if we hit snags, there are enough dedicated individuals on board to make the story come alive and even thrive when presented with challenges.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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