Clothes and web series: two things that definitely don’t make themselves. At this point, Jessie Katz and Lindsey Goodman know a little bit about both.
After meeting while working in PR for fashion industry, the two have used their inside-brand experiences to help write, produce and launch their web series “Labeled.” After releasing the first three episodes in mid-December of last year, Katz and Goodman turned to Kickstarter to raise funds for rounding out the show’s freshman season.
Following a successful campaign, “Labeled” was selected by Indiewire readers as May’s Project of the Month. Next up for the show is production on an additional seven episodes to dig into the unseen careers and experiences of the individuals who help keep some of the fashion business’ biggest names afloat.
The show’s co-creators chatted with us via email about the process of bringing all of these stories to fruition.
What’s next for the project?
We’re gearing up to shoot the next seven episodes of “Labeled’s” first season this fall. Currently, we’re in pre-production dreaming up new adventures for our characters, writing the season, pulling together a crew and location scouting.
Thanks to our successful Kickstarter campaign, we were able to raise the funds we needed to film the remainder of the season. With that wrapped up, we’re continuing to meet with producers and content developers who can help us find a home for “Labeled” beyond YouTube. “Labeled” was originally written as a 30 minute pilot for TV so we have that versatility going for us as we look to pinpoint the right platform.
What are the biggest challenges for the project?
We shot the first three episodes of “Labeled” a year ago this July. Since then we have both gone on to shoot many other projects – both separately and together – and have become much stronger filmmakers than we even were a year ago. We’ve also honed in on some themes that are particularly germane to women in their 20s and 30s – largely while shooting our spin-off series “Clock Out” on the fly while we fundraised for “Labeled” – that weren’t fully realized in those early episodes (specifically, self-exploration in the face of dating, aging and everyone’s favorite topic these days: sexual fluidity). So one of our biggest challenges is to make sure those seeds we planted in the early episodes blossom into the story that’s most important to us to tell now.
Additionally, while we are thrilled to have reached our Kickstarter goal with the help of 130 incredibly generous backers, it is the absolute minimum we needed for filming and post-production. Our creative challenge is to write within our means and we need to be realistic about locations and other logistical and production details that we can control. “Clock Out” has been a good exercise in that and has taught us that you can tell a great story with any budget.
What are your goals?
Over the last few months, we’ve had a lot of time to watch, re-watch and reflect on the first three episodes of “Labeled.” Moreover, we’ve had a chance to step back and take deep dive into our characters and their motivations – what drives them, what eats at them, how we see certain relationships playing out, etc. In the first three episodes, we focused on telling stories inspired by our experiences working in the fashion industry, finding humor in a world that we learned is way more bizarre than glamorous. As we continue to expose this environment for what it is, we want to dig deeper into our characters’ interior lives, as they each struggle to reconcile how they see themselves with what everyone else assumes about them (the individual versus the label). While keeping our characters grounded in reality and exploring the dysfunctional work family dynamic that everyone can relate to, we will also be challenging the assumptions made about people who work in this industry.
What do you wish someone had told you before you started?
For all the long days, sleep deprivation, bodily exhaustion, emotional fatigue, and general insanity of set life, we now understand that shooting is the easiest part of the whole process, the last time you won’t be dependent on anyone else helping you over the next hurdle. So, enjoy every moment of it!