I don’t think it’s a secret that I really – really – like watching web series. (Series? Serieses? Meh.) The Lizzie Bennet Diaries was the first one I watched, and I soon got slightly addicted. I’ve seen bits and pieces of different shows in the style of the LBD, but it’s hard to find any that are even close to the amazingness that is the LBD. (Shameless plug: I’m sure Masked will be amazing and I can’t wait to watch it!)
Enter Classic Alice.
I discovered CA a few months ago and instantly watched all of the episodes that had been released up to that point. Here’s the synopsis from the official website:
‘Classic Alice’ is the brainchild of series creator and star, Kate Hackett. It is the story of Alice Rackham, a college student with a huge drive to succeed. When she gets a bad grade on an essay because she isn’t emotionally connecting to material, she decides to take it a step further and live her life according to classic novels. Her friend, Andrew Prichard, uses the opportunity to make a vlog-style documentary about the process, and together they create ‘Classic Alice’.
See what I mean? Besides a few very minor cautions (some language and a few mild innuendos), I’d recommend it to anyone who loved the LBD or Emma Approved. Seriously. You’ll love it. It’s top aces. 😉
So, without further ado, here’s an interview I did with the creator, writer, and star of Classic Alice, Kate Hackett!
Thanks for having me!
First off, let me just say that it’s a pleasure to have you and that I’m so excited to be interviewing you! I discovered Classic Alice in August, so I had quite a few episodes to watch in a row and get addicted to. : ) I’m a huge fan of The Lizzie Bennet Diaries and Emma Approved, and CA was the perfect thing to get hooked on after EA ended.
Oh, thank you so much; getting compared to Lizzie or Emma or really any Pemberley show is such a huge compliment; the Emma cast is such an amazing group of friends too, so I’m honored to be lumped with them.
My first question has to do with the concept. I love the premise of the show! Can you explain it for my readers and tell us about how you came up with the idea?
The concept came about because I was asked to do some hosting & I have no real love of hosting. So I asked the people who had approached me if they would mind a scripted narrative told in a format that bridged the gap from ‘hosted YouTube show’ to ‘TV programming’.
A lot of the show seems very casual and unscripted. How much of it is scripted and how much of it is ad lib?
Everything is scripted, but we do allow room for the cast to improv at the end of some takes. Sometimes we include those moments, sometimes we don’t, but the meat of every episode has been pretty meticulously written. Tony will generally get a few takes out with the lines nailed word-perfect & then add some of his own flavor to it. Kate does the same & will react to what Tony (usually) gives her. Elise gives us improv first then hits the lines for safety. Reid was word-perfect until we told her she could play and Chris gave us AMAZING improv during the Ewan-introduction, but then stuck very carefully to the script! (…as far as I recall.)
I think your cast is absolutely perfect, too. It must be so much fun to play the main character in something you created! Did you know from the beginning who was going to play every character, or did you have to look a little to find the perfect actors?
I did not know! I offered Cara to Elise, who was a buddy of mine already, but I had Tony, Chris, and Reid all audition — I had to find them.
I especially like the idea that the show can go on for as long as you want it to. Did you have the entire story planned from the beginning, or is a continual work in progress?
I have an idea of where I want things to go, but it’s a creative industry: things can change! I keep things open for adjustment.
Andrew was originally an Abed-from-Community kind of guy who we had to completely morph when my first draft wasn’t what the original producers wanted; after their projects fell to the wayside & I decided to make Classic Alice on my own, I went ahead and kept Andrew as he had became! He’s based on what I wish my boyfriend would be. WOMPWOMP!!!! Kidding. No, I think I just wrote him as a kind of human being that I could see in the Valeton universe; his development comes from me caring very much about the character I made!
Last question! Can you give me any hints about what’ll be happening in the future between Alice and Andrew? I ship them… REALLY hard. : )
Well. Without spoilers: you really want us to have a book 8.
Well, that’s fantastic, because I already wanted a book 8. YAY. Thank you SO much!