Interview with Filmmakers Anna Maria Hozian & Brad Riddell (OTHER PEOPLE’S CHILDREN Web Series)

OTHER PEOPLE’S CHILDREN played to rave reviews at the June 2018 Web Series FEEDBACK Film Festival in Toronto.

What motivated you to make this web series?

As professors, we really wanted to get into the web series arena as many of our students are motivated to make them these days. Web series provide filmmakers and writers opportunities to develop an audience and to try their hand at the episodic arena. And as feature film writers, we wanted to try a different type of storytelling. Also, as suburban parents, we realized we had a goldmine of content – parents with good intentions who behave badly – that could last for season after season.

From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make your first season?

We started the ideation process in July, wrote and rewrote the script up to our shoot time, which was five days in December — and then the post process took another six months. The majority of our crew was either a DePaul professor or student, so we had to work around numerous schedules.

How would you describe your show in two words!?

CRAZY PARENTS!

What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing the first season?

Time. If this was our only job, or our crew’s only job, we would have been able to move so much faster! But as something we did on the side and asked people to volunteer their help, it was tough to reach the finish line.

What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

WE LOVED IT! Normally, you only get the reaction of being in the audience and hearing laughs. The best part is hearing how people connected with the material and responded to it. We had so much fun making it; it was golden to hear how much fun people had watching it. We especially loved the teacher who said that that is exactly what she goes through time and time again. It confirms that we were on the right track with our instincts.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video of the Short Film:

How did you come up with the idea for this?

We brainstormed a number of ideas, but once we pitched this one, we knew it was right. Honestly, it came from talking to a teacher about a parent who was trying to do what was best for her and her child without realizing the ramifications on anyone else. It’s parents behaving badly for what they think is best for their child. We have a line that was cut (for now) that said, “When the sperm hits the egg – instant nut jobs.” We, ourselves, have been known to be nut jobs from time-to-time when it comes to our own children.

What film have you seen the most in your life?

Anna: Shawshank Redemption or Little Miss Sunshine

Brad: I saw Star Wars so many times as a kid, nothing else has had time to catch up!

You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

We love it. Indie filmmaking life became 1000% easier when FlmFreeway came along, and anything that can make this insane process easier, is greatly appreciated.

What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

Anna: Smooth by Santana (with Rob Thomas)

Brad: Pride by U2

What is next for you? More episodes? Another series?

Anna: I have a feature that has been optioned, so hopefully, we’ll get that into production soon. I also want to shoot a short this year and I’m working on a few new scripts. We also hope to write the pilot for the full series of Other People’s Children.

Brad: I’m raising funds for a feature comedy about an 80s Prom Reunion Party called LATER DAYS (https://bit.ly/2Kgazee), which I will direct, and I’m also writing a skateboarding comedy for a Hollywood production company.

_____

Interviewer Matthew Toffolo is currently the CEO of the WILDsound FEEDBACK Film & Writing Festival. The festival that showcases 20-50 screenplay and story readings performed by professional actors every single month. And the FEEDBACK Monthly Festival held in downtown Toronto, and Los Angeles at least 3 times a month. Go to http://www.wildsoundfestival.com for more information and to submit your work to the festival.

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