Leesa Dean: Adventures of a Web Series Newbie

frankgehryChapter 36 – The Meeting
by Leesa Dean

So, the meeting was scheduled for early this week. The way it happened? Kinda serendipitous. My producing partner happened to be out at an event, bumped into an old friend who, its turns out worked out at the gym with Mr. Celeb #1, the b level musician we were hoping to get. He said he’d put in a word, he did and Mr. Celeb #1, unbelievably, was interested.

He wasn’t our first choice, but he did have a big twitter following, a major record deal and some name recognition. And he agreed to meet us for drinks.

It was nerve-wracking. Meeting Mr. Celeb #1 wasn’t. I’ve met a number of celebs and, in general, I’m WAY too much of nerd to be over-impressed hence nervous around them. No, I was frazzled because earlier I took the Defensive Drivers Course online and it was unexpectedly CRAZY.

For those who don’t know, taking the Defensive Drivers Course reduces what you pay in car insurance so I need to take it to continue to get a really affordable rate.  FYI, instead of Defensive Drivers Course, they shoulda retitled it: “Every Horrible Thing That’ll Ever Happen To You In A Car Replayed a Million Times Til You’re Shell-Shocked Into A Lifetime Of Probable Panic Attacks. Happy Driving!”

This was the first time I’ve taken it online (thought I’d save time, plus it’s cheaper) but, it turns out it’s WAY worse than the long uneventful & boring movie they show when you take it in person. It’s 6 hours long and I started in the morning, figuring I’d be done in plenty of time to make my meeting.

Partly written, it’s also got tons of mini movies executed in 3D (kind of a mashup of Taiwanese news depictions and Grand Theft Auto V) and every single one of them depicts a terrible, horrible, bloody crash (“You might think nothing can happen just driving down this serene suburban street, but a car can come out of nowhere and then **CRASH!!!!*** ” with bodies toppling every which way and the 3d driver looking dazed and confused.)

Worse, during each section, they force you to call a number and speak a code (a number they tell you) into the phone and you never know when it’s going to happen. One minute, you’re reading about the 8,000 ways you might die just by exiting your garage, the next, you’re calling this number for a voice spot check. If, for whatever reason, the computer doesn’t hear you correctly, you FAIL that part. And if you FAIL the call in part two times, you have to start from the beginning–even if you’re at the bitter f*cking end.   So, I had that *that* hanging over my head the entire, anxiety-ridden 6 hours.  Just the thing you need before an important meeting.

But, I somehow managed to pass with a three hours to spare and got down to the place K, my producing partner and I, picked for the meeting.

We agreed to meet about a 1/2 hour early to go over our game plan before Mr. Celeb #1 arrived and when I got there, K was already there. I had a beer to shift the mood. I’m a lightweight when it comes to alcohol (that nerd thing again) so normally don’t drink during meetings, or too often for that matter, but after taking that course, I thought it would be in our better interests and it did the trick (no, I wasn’t loopy.)

We looked over the work-in-progress sizzle reel we’ve been putting together and exactly at 6pm (our appointed time), Mr. Celeb #1 walked right in with his manager.

He was charming. The manager seemed cool. We chatted a bit. We bought them drinks. He ordered the same beer I did (Brooklyn.)  Turns out he and K took martial arts from the same instructor back in the day. After schmoozing a bit, I pitched him the project and…they laughed! Oh man, do I love it when that happens. So I pulled out my ipad and showed them the work-in-progress sizzle reel. And…they loved it!

We agreed on a date to record, K and I left REALLY happy. Well that was easy, I thought. And while Mr. Celeb #1 wasn’t who I really truly wanted, the idea of working with him was starting to really grow on me.

Til yesterday.

K texts me. He had just heard from the manager and while they really want to be involved, a big tour overseas that they had been negotiating for a while to be a part of, came through.  Mr. Celeb #1 was flying to LA the next day for a few weeks of rehearsals and then off to Japan and more. He’d be gone for a few months, wanted to see if we could push the date back but we really want to lock things in by then and with animation, voiceovers have to be done first. It just wasn’t going to work.


So, back to the drawing board. On the bright side, down the line, he might be involved. But, onto the next one, wherever he’s gonna come from.

Author: ChilltownTV

I'm primarily a writer. Sold a few series to tv networks and production companies but never had anything get on the air. So I taught myself how to animate and completed 3 digital series, launching two. The first, Chilltown has been named one of "Five Web Series That Should Be on Your Radar" by ABCNews/Univision and a "Show to Watch" by Tubefilter. The second, Lele's Ratchet Advice Show, garnered a fanatic cult following. As a result, I now do Lele's 60 Second Wrap Up, a weekly comedic entertainment report (which I write & perform) that airs on urban radio stations Rhythm 105.9fm and the Just Wake Up Morning Show on WWRNfm.

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