IPF invests $1.5 M in web drama series


The Independent Production Fund on Monday said it invested a combined $1.5 million in 15 scripted web dramas.

The projects were chosen from a short list of 31 web series, which was whittled from an initial 153 application.

Investments ranged from $50,000 to $150,000 per project.

From Ontario, Insight Productions’ But I’m Chris Jericho, a 10 x 4 minute series produced by Shannon Farr and Chris Jericho, and written by Gary Rideout Jr., Craig Brown and Bob Kerr was selected, and the second season of Guidestones, from iThentic Canada and 3′oclock.tv, received backing for 40 additional three-minute episodes. Guidestones, which recently won a Rockie award for best interactive fiction web series, is written by Jay Ferguson and Jeremy Diamond.

Also receiving funding are Long Story, Short, a 10 x 5 minute series produced by Gail Harvey, Katie Boland, Shelly Gillen and Russell Bennett of Long Story Short Productions and written by Boland ; S.O.S Save Our Skins, from Farmhouse Productions, Duopoly Canada Inc. and Baby Cow Productions for 30 three-minute episodes, produced by Kent Sobey and Catherine Tait, and written by Derek Harvie; and a second season of Space Janitors, produced by Davin Lengyel and Geoff Lapaire and written by Lapaire and Andy Hull.

Smokebomb Entertainment’s Unlikely Heroes, produced by Daniel Dales, Jay Bennett and Jarrett Sherman and written by Tim Burns, Miles Smith and Graham Seater, also received backing.

And Versus Valerie, a 12-ep series following the life of YouTube’s fictional Sexy Nerd Girl, was also selected. The series, directed and produced by Mike Fly and written by Stephanie Kaliner, will launch in early 2013.

From Quebec, Productions Babel’s 1000 jours, produced by Marco Frascarelli and written by Eric Piccoli, Mario Ramos, Julien Deschamps Jolin; Productions Pixcom’s La Brigadière, produced by Nadine Dufour and written by Barclay Fortin; a third season of Juliette en direct from Le Productions Passez Go, produced by Vicky Bounadère and written by Yvan DeMuy; season two of Manigances, from Isabel Dréan and Simon Côté and written by Ghislain O’Prêtre; and Le Productions Noir de Monde’s Motel Chevreuil, produced by Jean-Francois Aubé and written by Aubé and Nicolas Fournier were selected to receive IPF funding.

And selected from P.E.I. is Just Passing Through, produced by Jeremy  Larter, Geoff Read, Adam Perry and Michael Kenney of Rear Gear productions; while Mila’s Fountain, from Saskatchewan’s Homeside Productions and Wolf Tree Media, produced by Leanne Schinkel and Nils Sorensen also received an investment.

Elsewhere, Halifax’s Everyone’s Famous, from Gorgeous Mistake Productions, was also selected. The seven-ep, seven-minute series written by Andrew Bush and produced by Walter Forsyth, Angus Swantee and Bush, follows a man who quits his day job in a search for fame, after appearing in an embarrassing viral video.

“Although web series are a newer medium, the genre itself is becoming mainstream. Hollywood actors and executives are appearing in or creating web series more often. This backing from the IPF and Nova Scotia gives us a huge boost towards creating a successful show,” said Swantee in a statement.