How I got HIJACKED!

It’s funny where a little brainstorming can get you…

This experience has been a whirlwind to say the least. When I came on board for the summer, I never expected to be creating a web series with the Institute for Health and Human Potential (IHHP) team. It was an idea that just sort of came out of a brainstorming meeting about our social media future. Back then, it was just a passing thought, non-challantly brought about as a way to get the ball rolling.; but like Inception drilled into our heads back in 2010, there is nothing more infectious than an idea.

You could tell that there was a shift in the meeting, as light bulbs turned on and gears sped into motion. A Web Series! It was the perfect collaboration between the fictional world and the business one; and with our first business fable in the process of being written, it was the icing on the cake. We all left the meeting excited for what was to come and hungry for more.

Over the next few weeks, we held several meetings, strategically laying out our plan of attack. Deciding on a September launch date, we had to cover as much ground as quickly as possible. Everyone passionately contributed their ideas and expertise to the project, helping us move the train full speed ahead, and by the beginning of June we were right on schedule.

Finding actors definitely had its challenges. We had a minimal budget, which made searching for talent outside of our area difficult. We posted advertisements at local theaters, acting groups and sent the IHHP staff home with some homework. Within the first week, we were getting promising responses – it was all coming together.

Shooting the episodes has to be my favourite part. It was interesting to see how the actors worked with one another, and how they each started to take on their own individual characters – some even suggested subtle changes to be made in scenes that we had overlooked. I don’t think I ever gave actors as much credit as they deserved. To be an actor it takes a lot of dedication and perseverance. I was so impressed with the talent that they each brought to the table.

Of course no project is without its challenges. Once we got to the editing stage, bringing the whole thing together was more complicated than I’d imagined. When you watch a movie you don’t realize how much extra footage one scene takes. For us a two minute long episode had at least triple the amount of video, spread out between several takes. Don’t get me wrong, I love editing and enjoyed doing it, but it definitely is not as glamorous as the finished project makes it seem.

To summarize, this was a humbling experience to say the least. Each and every person brought their own skills to the table and it was so neat to watch it all unfold. I definitely learned a lot – more than I thought I would, and enjoyed every minute of it. It really is amazing where a little brainstorming can get you!

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