WonderCon 2009: Ed Brubaker talks about "Angel of Death" WebSeries

Whedonopolis: What made you decide to be involved in a webseries?

Brubaker: (Producer) John Norris mentioned they were talking to Zoe Bell about doing like a web feature that would be shown episodically, and I thought why don’t I create something new for Zoe Bell, because I’m a huge fan. I looked through my notebook and had an idea that I thought I could change, that would be perfect for her. I just wrote it up overnight and sent it in to him, and we were off to the races.
Whedonopolis: So what is Angel of Death all about?

Brubaker: Angel of Death is about a professional assasin who has absolutely no conscience or no remorse about anything she’s ever done. She gets a head injury and starts to grow a conscience, and starts to be haunted by the things that she’s done. She turns on all the people she’s worked for. It’s sort of left up in the air whether she’s actually losing her mind or whether these things are really happening to her, but you’re basically watching that journey.
Whedonopolis: Doug Jones, one of the Gentlemen in “Hush”, has a very interesting role. Tell us about that.

Brubaker: Doug Jones plays the junkie mob doctor. It was great because we knew that he was interested in doing something where he didn’t have to wear makeup. He’s such a great physical actor. I always say about Doug in this movie that he’s sort of like “The Big Lebowski’s” rug. He really holds the project together. In every scene he’s in, even if he’s in the background, you can see him, whatever he’s doing, reacting to everyone else, really holds the scenes together. He’s fantastic. His character is the mob doctor who they have to take Zoe to to get the knife out of her head.
Whedonopolis: Xena fans will also recognize a couple of familiar faces, Lucy Lawless and Ted Raimi.

Brubaker: That was a big coup for us. The director swears he’d didn’t actually tell them that it was for Zoe’s project. Ted Raimi’s part actually was a one-day thing for him. He has one of the best parts of the movie. He really has no dialogue. He has dialogue under a gag. It was great because we needed a really good physical actor for it, and they just asked him, and he came out.

Lucy’s part was actually written for her in the hopes that we could get her.  She really brought everything to it, too. She brought this whole Southern accent, and she came in with these bruises on her. She really got into the character. I wasn’t there the day she was on set, but the producer told me that they were talking and she just  loved being part of it, and loved getting to do something that weird. She plays an ex-high priced call girl who now is in Narcotics Anonymous, in the has found Jesus kind of world…and she’s the nosy neighbor.
Whedonopolis: How would you compare writing for a web series to writing for comic books?

Brubaker: It was really similar, actually, becaue I’ve written screenplays before for projects. Screenplays and comics are a little bit different, but doing something that had to work  both as a feature film and work so that you could break it up episodically was, I think, coming from comics, made that actually a little bit easier. On the schedule that we were on, it really helped to be able to have to concentrate on every 10 or 12 pages, and make sure those were really, really tight before I moved on to the next chunk of the story. I think coming from comics where everything is done in six or 12 part stories, and things like that, made it easy to do that.
That is one of the challenges of putting something on the internet. We don’t know yet how long things can be. I think Dr. Horrible really proved that people will sit there for 45 minutes and watch something. I watch tons of stuff on the internet now. If I miss “The Office”, I watch it on Hulu the next morning. I think that we are underestmating what people will do, how long people will sit still and watch something on their computer or iPhone or whatever. I think we’re underestimating it by saying it has to be ten or 12 minutes or whatever. I think you can release a 45 minute long thing, and if it’s good people will watch it.
Ten years ago this would have been a direct to DVD feature.  Now, when the DVD comes out, or when it’s released on iTunes as a feature, tons of people will have seen all or part of it already for free on the internet. We’re actually being able to get things viewed by millions of people before we actually release the saleable versions,. I think that’s really an interesting way to use the internet. I’m really excited about that.

 

Angel of Death will be shown daily over two weeks starting March 2nd on Crackle.com. It is one of several webseries that can be found at Crackle.com, which is backed by Sony Entertainment, and also includes classic movies and TV shows.

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Post Author: David Mello

Worked nearly eleven years at a radio station as a board operator, news reader, and assistant producer for baseball broadcasts. Have been a staff writer for Whedonopolis since July 2008

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