Today we were fortunate enough to have the chance to talk with creator Scott Brown about his guerrilla production ‘Stockholm.’ You say you don’t have any money, or locations, he says ‘So What?’
STOCKHOLM (Written/Directed by Scott Brown), based on the psychological phenomenon known as Stockholm Syndrome, unravels the story of a kidnapped woman (Brittani Noel) who discovers something unexpected in the basement of an insane, yet captivating serial killer (Zack Gold)…There is also a cat named Maurice.
Producing for the web is unique – a medium where constraints exist to be embraced, not to be used as excuses.
Armed with a scrappy budget and a desire to spearhead a dynamic project with a unique story, Actress and Producer Brittani Noel, who made a cameo appearance in Brown’s hit web series Blue Movies, approached him to collaborate. The parameters were to set the film in a place where a compelling, character driven story could unfold using only two actors, the director and his camera. In many ways these constraints defined the project and fueled creativity at all levels of the production.
Brown, having successfully tackled both comedy (Blue Movies) and drama (Asylum, acquired by BET Digital) genres in larger scale series, was up to take on this completely indie series (in the utmost sense of the word) and challenge himself to create something a little twisted for the web-verse, combining elements of both thriller and humor spawning an unexpected dark romantic comedy set predominantly in the confines of a basement.
With the fundamentals in place: an enticing story, a director with a bold vision, and a cast ready to tackle the material…the only vital missing piece was the location.
Finding an abysmal basement, a crucial element to the story, was key to the production of Stockholm. With no budget to rent or create a space, Noel had to get creative. She called upon a “friend” who will remain nameless, to pull some strings and get access to an empty house containing a perfectly grim location. This is how the shoot unfolded…
In the darkness of the night, we make our way through two locks, a gate, and two heavy doors to enter the shady neighborhood spot. We quickly set up the shoot and start rolling. Bang, Bang, Bang! Suddenly, a pounding on the door. We freeze. We aren’t sure which is more terrifying…the idea that it’s a gang of local hooligans breaking in or an ofﬁcial agent of sorts coming to check on the should-be empty house. We shut down production and stand motionless in the basement for what seems like hours until the mystery knocker disappears. Then lights, camera, action! Guerrilla ﬁlmmaking presses on…
This is the spirit in which Stockholm came to be, as indie spirited as you can get, with no room to question whether or not this project’s vision could come to life. Noel enlisted the help of Mom Eva Noel, who certainly earned a Production credit by the end of the shoot, to draw upon their passion for Stockholm to rally others to join in the effort to bring it to life – from convincing a Manager to shut down a grocery store to using the powers of persuasion to get a special bonus reveal in Episode 6… Stockholm really taught us that the secret is in the KISS and showed us just how creative you can get within the constraints of very limited resources.
With huge amounts of determination and absolutely no amounts of shame, we managed to bring this vision to life. There are always excuses, or reasons you can’t do something, the real test is whether or not you go on and do it anyway.