FNF: Stubs4:06 PM
Tonight's Friday Night Feature was a little more challenging for me, but in a really good way. I got the chance to interview two of my friends, who are absolutely talented and extremely fun; Mike and Marc of Stubs. They took a hobby, movie watching, and from it created an extremely entertaining web series. The guys took the time to tell us about their series "Stubs" and also answer some questions for us. I have included a few of their episodes in this feature, to get a glimpse of how awesome Stubs is.
*Note: They have over 90 episodes between Stubs and their game-review web series "Level-up". I only posted a few of them here, but be sure to check out the rest.
Mike Seidl is a 24 year old film enthusiast, who is a full time editor. He is currently working on a degree from Oakland Community College and believes the best way to go about learning is to do it.
Marc Bartsch is a 29 year old art lover. He loves it all forms from written word, to comics and celluloid. His love of the obscure and the pursuit of knowledge keep him going.
Meet the company:
Duidl Productions (pronounced Do-Idle), was created in 2007 by Will Duff and Mike Seidl as the production company they would produce their films and shorts under. They started with their student films; "Profile", "Customer Service", and "The Toque".
1) Where did the idea for Stubs come from, and who came up with it?
MB: Mike came up with it during D&D, while talking back and forth with friends about a web series. Will would review the movie, because originally Mike did not want to be behind the camera. [Mike: “no camera!”] Others would partake but eventually Mike reviewed as well.
MS: We would see midnight movies and on the ride home we would back-talk each other about the film, we would be in hysterics just going back and forth on our views. Will came up with the title “Stubs”.
MB:I originally hated the title, I said “No, I am NOT going to do a web series called ‘Stubs’!” But one day I was lying in bed and thought how amazing this would be and I was just like: “Let’s go!”.
2) Is there a certain plan that you guys follow? Do you ever write out a script or practice before you film or is it more of a free-style approach?
MS & MB: we’ve tried. But the spontaneity just brings out something wonderful.
MS: We do have a layout, but we always have to cut out a lot, we will go on and on about an actor or go into a debate and then stop and start filming again. We do a lot of skits, so we might write one out-
MB: Like the beams in-and-out for the Star Trek episode.
MS: Skits are fun, We try to do them as often as we can but time, budget, and acting ability (neither of us are good at acting) make it hard.
3)What is the deciding factor on the movies and films you choose? Personal taste, recommendations, etc?
MS: I tell him what we are doing. (laughs)
MB: Yes of course we take recommendations!
MS& MB: We hear about movies from people, we check it out and we’ll go see it. That is how we did the episode on “Jennifer’s Body”, some one let us know on Twitter-and it wound up being one of our favorite skits.
4) How often do you film an episode of stubs, and how often do you see films?
MS: If I had it my way-right after the movie, in the theater. It usually takes a day or two though, we try to get them out as quickly as possible.
MB: Sometimes we go see a movie once a week, sometimes 2-3 weeks go by. It depends on the movie.
5) Which episode is your favorite so far and why?
MS: I hate everything, but I am my own worst critique. I keep thinking, “we’re not there yet” but I eventually have to stop and post the episode or it won’t get posted. We do have some great nuances, Marc’s facial expressions, there are camera tricks, comic references & jokes.
MB: The jokes, they can get old fast. But some stick for awhile. We sometimes try different ways to “name” Stubs. There was the Spider Man themed one on the “New Moon” episode; “The amazing , Spectacular, Sensational, Friendly Neighborhood & web of Stubs!”
6) What is your guys ultimate goal with Stubs? Do you want to make a career out of it, or make them just for fun?
MB: Yes. I would love to continue doing Stubs. At first I was a volunteer, I thought it would be a blast! But I really want to make it a career. Mike wants to do other things.
MS: There is a lot that I would like to do, I am still on the production end, and I would like to do short-films as well as Stubs.
7) I have noticed that there are quite a few comments from fans on you tube, and that your episodes are pretty creative, do you guys use any feedback that you get from fans in your episodes? And what inspires the creativity behind each episode?
MS&MB: Yes, we do use feedback and we also try to use something funny in connection to the movie, like in “Jennifer’s Body”.
MS: We try to listen to feedback, the most people are willing to leave is usually “This is the best thing I have ever seen!” or “These guys don’t know shit.” On our ‘Halloween II’ episode, an anonymous viewer left this huge page-long commentary on how Stubs should have been filmed (He saw the film with us).
A lot of feedback helps shape Stubs, from the clothes we are wearing to formatting the show.
8) Are there any challenges that you come across while taping Stubs?
MS: Yes, mostly because we are filming in our friends attic. The lighting and the sound are always a challenge. Neither of us are very articulate, there are a lot of “um’s” and we stumble a lot. We also get off track.
MB: (laughs) yes we will get on each other on our views, or go off on something weird, then we will just crack-up. Mike will go “start again!”. There are times when I am sitting on the couch and there are tears just pouring down my face because I am laughing so hard!
9) Is there a specific genre of film that you guys prefer to review?
MB: Comic-comedies mostly. Sci-fi, (I am really geeky) but we try to go across the board with the films.
MS: Sci-fi, comedy, comic. I will watch anything, but I look forward to the comic and comedies.
10) Finally, what is up next for stubs?
MS: Working on two Stubs right now, looking forward to shutter Island. We are also changing the set soon- it’s going to be slick.
MB: We are looking forward to the summer movie season, Iron Man II is a big one.
MS: Hollywood nights will be coming up again, it is 24 hours of straight movies for the Childrens Leukemia Foundation of Michigan. We review right in the theater, Will and I are always running around trying to get everything done. It’s hectic and draining, but a lot of fun.”
I would like to thank Mike & Marc again for letting me conduct this interview and for sharing their work on my blog. If you would like to find out more about Stubs and Duidl Products, here are a few links: