Somojo Magazine

Alice Cutler

Actor/Writer/Producer for the web series‘Saving Rent’

Hi Alice, thank you for taking the time to do this interview with us. How are you?
Great.

Did you always want to be an actor when growing up?
Ever since I could speak I wanted to act.

Do you prefer stage or tv/film acting?
I grew up acting onstage and will always love the energy of a live audience.  I think nothing can compare to that.  But since moving  to Los Angeles and acting in front of the camera more, I’m growing to love that as well.  The two are such different mediums and hard to compare.

Who are your acting heroes? 
I really admire the great comedic women, like Lucille Ball and Lisa Kudrow.  I wish there were more great comedic roles for women like that.  I also think that Meryl Streep can do no wrong.

Do you have a favorite film?
One of my all-time favorites is “Kicking and Screaming,” written and directed by Noah Baumbach.  The humor is so intelligent and I can relate so well to the characters.

Which actors, writers, film directors would you like to work with?
I would love the opportunity to work with Noah Baumbach, mentioned in the previous question, just because I find his writing so intelligent.  I also think it would be a lot of fun to work on “Curb Your Enthusiasm” because it’s non-scripted and the cast is so funny.

You recently finished your web series ‘Saving Rent’. How did you find that whole experience considering that you co-wrote, produced and starred in it?
It was an invaluable experience.  I’ve never been with a project from the very earliest development stages all the way to through post-production. It’s really amazing to write something and then see your words come to life. Producing was definitely the most challenging part of the whole process, yet so rewarding to have creative control over my material.

Was this your first time as writer/producer on a project?
Yes.

Who else was involved in the production and writing of ‘Saving Rent’?
Gary Teperman and Ernie Lee were the creators of the idea, Gary Teperman and I wrote and executive produced it together, and Jonathan Zweben was also a producer.  Mike Jones was our Director of Photography and Tarek Karkoutly was our editor.

Had you worked with these people before?
Yes, Gary had directed me in a play in New York several years ago.

Who is in the cast for ‘Saving Rent’?
Mike: Vincent Giovanni
Paul: Jacob Lane
Suzie: Mallory McGill
Tina: Ashley Palmer
Chucho: Alex Ruiz

Did you do a traditional casting for ‘Saving Rent’ or did you have an idea of who you wanted for the parts when you started writing the script?
I wrote the role of Kelley for myself, but we had no one else in mind for any of the other characters when writing it.

When the writing began on ‘Saving Rent’ was it always the intention to have it as a web series?
Why not shoot a pilot episode and try to get the series into a mainstream tv channel?

We always intended to shoot it as a web series.  It would have been great to write it as a TV pilot, but the odds of it actually getting picked up are so slim.  When you write a web series, you know you can shoot it all yourself and have a much better chance of getting distribution.  Then, in the worst case scenario if it doesn’t get sold, you can still post it online for free.  We do, however, hope to get picked up for TV.

Due to ‘Saving Rent’ being a web series, were there things that needed to be considered during production that differ from producing a traditional tv series?
Not during production.  We did have to keep everything very tight and succinct when writing it, but as far as the shooting went, not much differed from a traditional TV series.

What film format did you shoot ‘Saving Rent’ on and what equipment did you use during production?
We shot it on video, using a Sony Xcam with a 35 mm adapter.

Will there be another series of ‘Saving Rent’?
If there’s demand for it.  The characters’ storylines lend themselves to an additional season.

Do you see the internet and web series like ‘Saving Rent’ as a viable long term option for small production teams and new writers to get their work in front of an audience?
Definitely.  More and more people are watching TV on the internet, higher profile actors are appearing in web series, and it’s so easy to promote online content.  And with sites like
Facebook and Twitter, you can get the word out to thousands instantly without spending a dime.

Are writing and producing something you would like to do more of in the future?
Absolutely.  Writing always seemed so daunting to me because I didn’t think I was good enough at it, and producing is something I never thought I’d do.  Now that I’ve accomplished both, I know I can do it again and much better the second time.

What projects do you have lined up next?
I am currently writing a new web series based on a bar.

Is there anything else you would like to add?
Please go to our website www.savingrent.com for more info on the project

 

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