The script for season one of the Crowned webisodes is ready, and the cast is set. All that’s left is the fund raising to start filming.
Josh Bednarsky and his wife Brianne Sanborn created an eight-episode series that will appear on the Web, but will look like it’s from any network TV station. Bednarsky said season one will contain eight episodes (each five to 10 minutes long). They have created a Kickstarter webpage to raise funds that will be applied to the cost of cinematography, sound, wardrobe, makeup, locations, animation, editing, post-production and special effects and getting the best cast possible. They’re even trying to get cameos of recognizable actors. They’ve already enlisted the help of Shelton — now California — resident Kurt Peterson.
Bednarsky, a 2004 graduate of Shelton High School, has a background in theater with tutelage at Center Stage Theatre, acting in high school and more. He has a bachelor’s degree in communications and a minor in musical theater from Marymount Manhattan College. He studied acting in New York and trained in Los Angeles at the Groundlings School. He now lives in California.
“Many many people assume acting is a very lucrative career,” said Bednarsky in a phone interview on Friday. But that’s just maybe 2% of actors, he said, and that is when you play in “the big leagues.”
Bednarsky has played leading and supporting characters in theaters across the country and has appeared in films including Viette, the Killing of Jacob Marr and Zero Day, and the TV show Harry’s Law.
A Web-series is born
Bednarsky and Sanborn married in his Shelton home in April, and they set off to start their lives together. “We just used our honeymoon as a trampoline to get here” to Hollywood, he said.
Sanborn quickly found a job as a Party Princess — she would dress up as characters such as Ariel from The Little Mermaid and Alice from Alice in Wonderland — and would entertain parties by singing, dancing and games.
“During these jobs all of these things would happen … a lot of them are ‘mocumentaryish,’” said Bednarsky.
He said some of the stories have been embellished to make it more entertaining, but for the most part they are true. According to the script, the character Macey gets a last minute call to go to a party — she puts on a Pocahontas wig and goes, only to find 24 seven-year-olds dressed up as little mermaids. Or, another time she goes to the party as Alice from Alice in Wonderland, entertains for two hours before the mother says she should leave because she was too timid and had an unrealistic costume.
“Before you knew it, we had eight episodes written,” said Bednarsky. “Some of these princess parties are pretty kooky.”
One time when Sanborn was leaving a party and a mother approached her saying, “You took our money, and that’s all we get?”
“Basically I budgeted $1,000 an episode,” said Bednarsky. “We want it to look like it can go on any channel. We’re going to commit the time to do it right.”
If they reach their fund-raising goal, Bednarsky said the first episode should go live in October or November. The problem with going through Kickstarter, said Bednarsky, is if they do not reach their goal, they will not get any of the money.
“The longer you play, the greater the chance you have” of being discovered, he said, and he hopes this will be one step closer to making it.
To learn more about this project or to make a donation (even $5 will help), visit kck.st/MfmlF9. Donors get treated to a special prize for donating different amounts. For donating $450, Bednarsky’s brother Matt will create a short original song based on you, and will put it on his YouTube channel.