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11 Canadian Web Series Trying to Win Funding
Independent Production Fund applicants try to build an audience with hilarious trailers

Morgan Waters and Mark Little from House Sitters

The Independent Production Fund‘s deadline for submissions has just passed and subsequently, emerging Canadian filmmakers in search of funding for their web series have flooded the Internet with trailers. New requirements this year mean that creators have to produce a two-minute proof of concept video to be made available to the public so evaluators can judge how effective teams are at actually attracting an audience to their shows. The number of views and comments these trailers can generate factors into whether or not these projects receive funding, so if you want to see any of these videos as a full series, share them with your friends. It’s not clear how many projects applied to the IPF this year, but these were all the trailers we could cobble together by our deadline. Enjoy!

Get Rich Quick

Two idiots will try anything to make a million dollars so they can be more like their idol, George Clooney.

Starring Tom Henry and Chris Locke. Produced by Dave Hodgson, Scott Stephenson, Geoffrey Webster. Directed by Andrew Strapp.

Message from the Creators: “Uh… okay, so I want Get Rich Quick to get funding because I want to make a series with Tom Henry where we play Clooney-obsessed idiots and Fun Time Internet are just the right producers for comedy meets action! I also want to make shorts where we yell and people get shot.”

Psychic Brothers

A pair of non-psychic brothers inherit a psychic shop from their dead uncle and try to make a go of it.

Starring Tim Gilbert and Nick Flangan. Created by Tim Gilbert, Nick Flanagan and Michael Schaus. Directed by Adam & Dave.

Message from the Creators: “This is going to be insane. Two morons that aren’t psychic run a psychic shop. Crazy supernatural. Ghosts, witches, a genie, trading brains, etc. Also violent! I just wanted to stress that this whole thing is supposed to be a hundred million times crazier than our video implies. The whole thing is very supernatural and will hopefully just turn into the monster mash song. We’ve been really obsessed with psychic shops since coming up with the idea and are into the idea of two complete neophytes entering that world of comfortable couches and homes/businesses. It will be magic. Gross magic.”

Space Riders: Division Earth

What if the Power Rangers were less earnest and more neurotic?

Written & Performed by Dan Beirne & Mark Little. Directed by Jordan Canning.

Message from the Creators: Think Earth is safe? Then your memory has been wiped! We are in constant danger & only the Space Riders can save us! Space Riders: Division Earth… when the Earth needs saving, call two dudes with ‘tude! (Actually, more like two duds who are also buds, but very fun to watch.) In this episode teaser, the guys need to save Earth from a moon monster, but Patrick faces the ultimate dilemma: is it worth getting naked in public?”

It Girl

What happens when VJs grow up?

Starring Misty Fox, Jason Couse, Sophie Grapes, Andrew Williams. Created and Directed by Claire Edmondson.

Message from the Creators: It Girl is about an “aging” it girl who is over it. It’s a story arc most people can relate to in terms of grappling with that final step in becoming an adult, but what’s different about this series is that it takes place in the fashion and music industry. Toronto is known world wide for it’s rich music scene, I think because of this, the show would also appeal to international audience who are interested in what is happening here at the moment. We see a lot of shows that showcase “quirky Canadian culture”, this series showcases another side of Canada that we collectively seem to deny – the fact that we also have cosmopolitan cities with forward thinking music, art and fashion scene’s. I think it’s time the world (and the rest of Canada) saw we are more than just snow and Mounties!”

Hogtown

Can you guess which mayor this is based on?

Starring Pat Thornton. Created by Keith Berry and Jesse McLean.

Message from the Creators: “Hogtown is a single-camera workplace comedy about the country’s biggest and most hated city and its bungling Mayor. He may not be perfect–in fact the term “imperfect” is woefully inadequate. He may not know all the ‘fussy little rules’ regarding conduct, libel and aggravated assault, but we like him. We can’t help it. For a while we had been batting around the idea of a series most definitely not inspired by a divisive mayor of a certain loathed city. But once we thought of Pat Thornton in the lead role (an embattled mayor absolutely not mirrored after anyone living, dead or a football coach), everything came together. If Pat had not been interested, we would have let the series die a lonely death. Just like After MASH.

Patients Please

Think Bad Santa but with doctors.

Starring and Created by Colin Mochrie and Patrick McKenna.

Tri-Curious

Prettttttttty sexyyyyyyyy.

Starring Dani Barker and Ryan Leslie Fisher. Produced, directed, and edited by Dani Barker.

Message from the Creators: “An unforeseen wet dream has Sam on an impetuous quest, with the assistance of her boyfriend, Jacob, to fulfill her newfound fantasy of being with a woman. It is throughout this journey that these two twenty-somethings are exposed to an unconventional world of polyamory and sexual experimentation while struggling to maintain a modern-day open relationship- while fun- is ultimately destructive.”

The Amazing Gayl Pile

Like the Newsroom for the Home Shopping Channel.

Starring Morgan Waters. Created by Morgan Waters & Brooks Gray. Produced by LaRue Entertainment

Message from the Creators: “After winning two Geminis for our previous series, Cock’d Gunns, we figured it was time to follow it up with a web series made for a fraction of the budget in an effort to maintain our underdog status. More importantly, the world is long overdue for an exposé of the rampant sex, violence, prescription drug abuse and spiritual corruption that goes on behind the scenes in the world of home shopping.”

House Sitters

Party Down meets Stella.

Starring Mark Little and Morgan Waters. Created by Mark Satterthwaite.

Message from the Creators: “The House Sitters concept has a simple premise that allows for tons for jokes. Frees us up to follow the whims of our characters into ridiculous situations. One episode the guys could house sit a kid’s treehouse, the next, a millionaires bachelor pad. It’s about packing in as many jokes as we can, messing around with storytelling conventions, and sending the viewer down a hilarious worm hole.”

Everyone’s Famous

A Being John Malkovich for the YouTube generation.

Starring Ryan BeilPat Thornton, Kayla Lorette and Kyle Hickey. Created and Directed by Andrew Bush.

Message from the Creators: “People ask me what my series about and I tell them it’s about what happens when you try to be original on the internet but you suck. Basically, the series follows a guy who doesn’t know anything about making anything trying to make something from nothing.”

The Grill

Friday the 13th meets Weekend at Bernies.

Starring Craig Anderson, Tess Degenstein, Roger Bainbridge, Evany Rosen, Scott Yamamura, Stephanie Tolev. Created by Craig Anderson, Conor Holler, Jordan Christianson. Directed by Mike Fly.

Message from the Creators: “Sure we love our summer cottages, but do we love our barbecues enough? The Grill is a lust-letter to summer’s greatest hero. Its an absurdly comic story about a group of cottage vacationers, and their living barbecue who just wants to be one of the gang.”

Did we miss your web series? Send an email to mkolberg@torontostandard.com and we’ll add you to the list.

Clarification: Previously, this article stated that receiving funding “depends” on views and comments, but those metrics are only one of several factors being considered by the IPF evaluators.

____

Michael Kolberg is The Sprawl Editor at Toronto Standard. Follow him on Twitter for jokes @mikeykolberg.

For more, follow us on Twitter at @torontostandard and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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