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BTS: Many more questions.

Syndicated from Bernie Su‘s Tumblr

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Q: When you started the LBD, what kind of audience did you guys envision and how has the audience now met your expectations or not?

A: Hank and I had no expectations going in because we didn’t know if people would even like it. Watch his intro video again from way back in April. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LEC27KwxmAE&t=2m43s
It’s fascinating if you consider the success of the series now with all the hesitations we had pre-launch. “Are people going to like this?” – “Is this any good?” – “Will people even understand what this is?”

If there’s a lesson to take from this it’s don’t be afraid to take risks. Or as Hank has  said, “don’t be afraid to try.”

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Q: Loving the way LBD is going, Bernie! Cheers to the whole team! Is it weird being around so many good looking people all the time?!?

A: Thanks! Yeah it’s difficult but sometimes you gotta make sacrifices.

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Q: Kind of wondering why Bing calls his best friend by his last name. I understand that to the general populace he’s known as Darcy, but I can’t think of anyone that I know in 21st Century America that has their best friends call them by their surname. This isn’t a complaint either, I was just wondering! Thanks for all the amazing work on the show!

A: It’s not last naming, it’s nicknaming. Friends do it to friends all the time and I do it to most of the team members on The LBD.  Ash, Kiley, M-K, C-Sean, I could go on and on.

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Q: When do we get to see Darcy?

A: SHOCKER! I have never been asked this question EVER. Not by fans, not on tumblr, not by my friends in real life. :P

Anyway, you’ll see him. When? – Well there have been a lot of good guesses and one of them is right.

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Q: How did you come up with the wonderful Hipster! Darcy update?

A: It just kinda happened and we look forward to showing him to you.

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Q: Hi Bernie, question for Saturday: I LOVE the LBD – I watch the show religiously and want it to be super successful because I love it so much. :) How can I get the word out about the show?

A: Thanks! My philosophy in getting the word out is to tell “one to tell many”. I mean sure if you have a friend that’s a Jane Austen fan, they should at least check out The LBD (if they like it, great, if they don’t, oh well). But I like trying to tell someone or some organization that has the ear of lots of people. For example, I’ve been fascinated by the level of educational interest in the show (professors, libraries, schools), so I’d say to start there. Other places to target are media sites all the way down to your own social media destinations (which so many of you do so well). When you share it with your followers, FB friends, Tumblr, G+ whatever, you’re putting the show in front of a lot of people. Just don’t over do it because your friends may get sick of you :)

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Q: First I wanted to say that I am not a crazy anxious person to see Darcy. Am I in the minority here? I don’t know, I like the wait! :) But anyway, here’s the question: Do you ever look at the youtube comments for some thing that could happen in the future? Cause, some of those commentors are really creative! Or do you have every single thing planned out already?

A: I actually think there are just as many people patiently waiting for Darcy as there are people who are dying to see him. It’s just that the people who want to see him now are way more vocal.

For story, we have all the big events figured out. We need to have a solid framework so we know where the story is going. As for the comments, yes they are really creative, and yes sometimes they are right on with what we plan to do. I don’t know if it bugs the other members of the team when someone is totally accurate to how we’re gonna address something but I have no problem with it. It tells me that “the idea” has some weight.

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Q: Are y’all planning to revamp another classic?

A: The LBD is a lot of fun and I want to keep it at a high level so I’m focusing my “revamping” skills on this one. When we get towards the end of the story we’ll see where everyone is at. So currently no plans… yet.

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Q: Hi! Big fan and everything. I’m impressed by how you’ve handled such a daunting project so far, and was wondering if you could clue us in on your creative process. Did you map all of the weeks out before you began writing? Have there been many unexpected changes/additions along the way? How far ahead are episodes filmed and written? (Thanks, in advance.)

A: Thanks! This is by far the hardest and most daunting creative project I’ve ever taken on. It wouldn’t be what it is if not for the hardworking team working with me. This is far, far, far from a one person show (in front or behind the camera). I remember Hank saying at the Vidcon panel that something like this (right book, right skill set, right person) could be done with literally one person, I remember thinking to myself, wow… that would be REALLY REALLY REALLY difficult. :P – But sure it could be done.

As for creative process? For me, I go through the book and the chapters we’re working on and pick out what I feel are important character moments/plot points. – But again, it’s not all me. There have been several times where one of the writers picks out a moment in the story that I missed or didn’t give much value to.

Then the writing team comes together and we “break” out the next block of episodes. For example the “Netherfield” arc was rough outlined in one evening with all of us sitting around one table.

After the episodes are outlined they’re assigned to each of the writers and they go write them. Once they’re done, they turn them into me, I do my pass on them and then we rehearse with the actors (and writers), where more changes happen. I’ve never worked in television on a TV show but I’m told that this process is similar to many TV show writer rooms. So I guess I look at this process like making a mini-TV show.

How far ahead we are totally fluctuates depending on where we are in the process and where we are in the story. But the person on the team who is the furthest ahead in the story is me and I’m about three months ahead.

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Q: Are you guys planning on providing captions for episodes 23 and above? It makes it much easier for me to understand what is going on (I am hard of hearing).

A: Yes. My sincerest apologies on that. For some reason YouTube doesn’t auto caption for us anymore. Before we would go in and just correct the auto generated file, so it wouldn’t take very long. Now we have to hand caption everything and it takes some time. If anyone wants to volunteer to help us out email

captions(at)lizziebennet(dot)com

This also includes anyone that wants to volunteer to translate for us. We have a few languages covered but we could always use the help.

BTS: Lydia/Mary Q&A

Syndicated from Bernie Su‘s Tumblr

So here’s part 2 of me answering questions about the past month of The LBD.

Part 1 about Netherfield is here.

Part 3 about everything else is here

In this post I’m focusing on questions about the Lydia/Mary arc.

Before I start, I’ll just say that the Lydia spinoff brought me a lot of joy.

It felt that the Lydia story stood on its own and not as “Lizzie Bennet Diaries lite”. You could follow Lizzie’s story to Netherfield or you could follow Lydia’s story to Mary’s, and now they unite back at the Bennet house.

Don’t be surprised if we do another story split like this in the future.

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Q: Would you guys consider having Lydia’s multiple location phone vlogs going on at the same time as Lizzie’s? Because Lydia moves around with her camera, wouldn’t it be a good way to show scenes with the characters as opposed to re-enactments?

A: Creativity vs Economics again. It’d be nice but we don’t have the resources to do it. Also I like the reenactments, they make me laugh… a lot.

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Q: Will we be seeing more of Mary, or will she just be on Twitter from now on? I really like how you guys modernised the character (make that all the characters) and I think that it would be a shame if we didn’t see her anymore..

A: Thanks. I’ll say that we love our version of Mary as well. The “emo” direction felt like a bolder/modern/cooler choice than just “bookworm” Mary. I’ll also say that Mary Kate, Rachel, and I loved working with Briana and we’d love to work with her again.

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Q: Do you plan on having Mary come on to Lizzie’s vlog?

A: Well, we aren’t planning to NOT have Mary come on Lizzie’s vlog. Vague enough? :)

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Q: What is the story behind the cat who plays Kitty? Did you have to find a trained cat to play her?

A: That’s Rosie. She’s Mary Kate’s cat and she takes the “be cute” direction like a pro!

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Q: Will Lydia still be putting out videos on Tuesdays and Fridays?

A: Not for now. Lydia’s channel follows Lydia’s story, but there isn’t as much of a need for it when we’re essentially getting a version of it from Lizzie’s channel.

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Q: The obvious question is “will we see Mary again?” But I wonder what role she’ll play in the grand scheme of things? Will Lydia and Mary continue their reluctant friendship when hurricane Wickham comes to town?

A: Just putting this here to illustrate how much Mary support there is, and that makes me happy. To be honest, the Lydia spinoff is something we wanted to try and we’re thrilled that it was such a success. Props to Rachel Kiley, who basically had to write that whole arc by herself, it was fun, cool, and lovable. It also let us do something that the book never did.

1. Give Lydia depth and her own adventure
2. Tell us what happens to her while her sisters are at Netherfield.

We plan to continue giving Lydia depth in ways the other adaptions never do and whether that involves Mary specifically, well you’ll just have to see.

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Q: I found Episode 3 of TheLydiaBennet (The Lodger) somewhat off-putting, in that both Lydia and Mary’s actions seemed implausible to the point of unbelievability. On the other hand, I really loved Episode 7 (Going Home), in part because it seemed like a believable human interaction between Lydia and Mary. Does writing for a faux real-life vlog impose special constraints in terms of maintaining believability? And are there any other lessons you’ve learned about writing for this particular medium?

A: Like everything about the show, this is all an experiment. I know that the Lydia/Mary arc was something Rachel had a lot of fun with, especially since she wasn’t constrained by following the book. She’s someone who takes a lot of risks as a writer and taking risks leads to hits and misses, but I personally loved how she got all the Dr. Who references into that episode. I don’t think we could do that in the Lizzie show, but Lydia? – Sure! Let’s have fun with it, let’s see what happens, and let’s see if the viewers like it.

As for lessons about writing for this medium. Well I’ve personally been writing for this medium for a long time. Four years (an eternity for the internet). But yeah there is this sense of believability for this particular show that actually predicates how the show is executed. For example in Going Home, you can hear the sound of Lydia bumping the mic on her camera. Well as much as that would be “unreal” in a 3rd person series, it’s very real in our show (even though we didn’t intend you to hear that).

One of the things I love about our show is that it focuses so highly in the writing and the performances. We don’t have fancy camera shots, special effects, action scenes, or any of that. Don’t get me wrong, I love those as much as the next guy, but that’s not our show. Our show is about people interacting with people and it’s a lot of fun to just watch the actors do the scenes.

Personally, for a guy that lives in Hollywood, where everything is essentially “fake” and constructed, it’s fun and refreshing to a have creative piece that is pure writing and performance.

Part 1 about Netherfield is here.

Part 3 about everything else is here

BTS: Netherfield Questions

Syndicated from Bernie Su‘s Tumblr

Phew, that was an exhausting month for The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. Going from two videos a week to four is no easy task. I think about some of the YouTubers who do daily videos by themselves and I’m amazed. It’s a ton of hard work. Even if you say “well they can just wing it”, they still have to plan, record, and edit these videos and wow that is a lot of work no matter who you are.

Anyway as promised I’m gonna answer a lot of the submitted tumblr questions.
I’m going to split these into three posts. -

1. Questions about Netherfield
2. Questions about Lydia and Mary
3. Questions about everything else.

Oh and there are spoilers (that aren’t spoilers if you’ve read the book) but you’ve been warned.

First up Netherfield.

Q: Why did the Bennet sisters stay at Netherfield for a month as opposed to two weeks as it is in Pride and Prejudice?

A: This is one of those creative vs economics battles that show business has all the time. It’s a question of “if you’re gonna spend the resources to make X for the show, are you going to get enough out of that X to make the resources worth it?”

There were early discussions of whether or not we were going to cut the Netherfield trip all together since we’d have to go and find/build/get this new location. But this “arc” felt so important to the story it just needed to happen. Also a lot of iconic events do happen at Netherfield and we felt we needed to cover it over as many videos as needed.

Those of you who thought we went really slow through that arc kind of puzzled me. There was only one video that didn’t cover a specific event/interaction from the novel and that was episode 27 (getting us into Netherfield, which really sets up Caroline). Anyway, our answer is both creative and economical. We needed time to hit all the major scenes and we also wanted to get as much out of that set/location as possible.

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Q: What do you think of the “Boo Lizzie” effect (mainly playing out over the video’s YouTube comments)?

A: I’m guessing this is coming from the comments that point out that Lizzie isn’t being very likable, or that they want her to be more likable. To be honest, I don’t mind this criticism at all. I think there’s this unrealistic expectation as to how perfect Elizabeth Bennet is supposed to be for many P&P fans. I mean that’s fine, she’s considered the most revered heroine in literary history, but the Elizabeth Bennet we’re interpreting is awesome but far from perfect.

1. In the LBD, we’re trying to make everyone seem as realistic as possible. As Lizzie Bennet is a “presence to behold” she’s also incredibly flawed. re: PREJUDICE :) – Our Lizzie is a vlogger, she’s got a ton of opinions and she’s stubborn about them. You’re not going to always like her and that’s okay. Everyone in our lives, no matter how much we like them, do things we don’t like. That’s life and that’s human.

2. There was a lot of this criticism coming from the Netherfield arc and well there’s a reason for that and her name is Caroline. Re-watch the arc, listen to Caroline’s words to Lizzie, and what she encourages Lizzie to think and feel. She’s trying to rattle her, to make her “disagreeable” (especially to Darcy), and to keep Darcy and Lizzie apart. The more Lizzie rants and hates Darcy the better it is for Caroline, so her manipulations naturally drive Lizzie to this “ranty, unlikeable” place. Caroline also has the advantage of Lizzie being already uncomfortable being at Netherfield due to her mother’s mettling and that affects her personality and her judgment. Lizzie is vulnerable and Caroline exploits it.

Finally, I’ll remind you that since it’s a “break the 4th wall show.” So if you’re finding yourself liking Caroline and hating Lizzie (even just a little) well that is exactly what Caroline wants. ;)

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Q: Why did the girls keep commenting on how much they missed Charlotte when they were only at Netherfield. I thought it wasn’t too far from their old house, so shouldn’t they be able to see her just as much as they did when they were at home?

A: To be honest, this was one that bugged us too. In the book, Charlotte doesn’t go to Netherfield, so having her there would have changed the dynamic a lot. Also, not having Charlotte and her voice of reason would keep Lizzie vulnerable to everything else, which is what we needed. My only logical explanation is that Netherfield is not super close, and Charlotte didn’t want to intrude. (it’s not great, but it’s all I got).

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Q: Why didn’t you include Mrs. Bennet’s visit?

A: Didn’t feel like we needed it. We’ve already accomplished bits of Caroline and Bing observing the “embarrassing” family and we’ll include more later. We also hit Lydia getting Bing to “throw a party”. We didn’t see a reason for Mrs. Bennet to be there. We figured she wouldn’t want to get in the way of her own convoluted matchmaking plan (or risk Jane coming back with her, which she could do since Jane isn’t deathly sick in this version).

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Q: What do you feel is the “point” of the Netherfield arc? What were the most important points/ideas/relationships you wanted to establish in Lizzie’s time there? Why?

1. Bing and Jane are perfect for each other. But Bing, though completely infatuated, has insecurities about whether or not he’s doing the right thing and if he’s truly winning her heart over. I’ve been in this exact situation and as a guy, this felt very real to me. You’re into someone so much that you do everything you can to make sure everything is perfect but you’re unsure and you misread/second guess anything and everything.

2. Hint that Darcy actually likes Lizzie but his “flirting” is being completely misunderstood by the very stubborn and prejudicial Lizzie.

3. Caroline driving/manipulating Lizzie away from Darcy and making her hate him more. To me, this is the biggest departure we’ve done from the book. If you don’t like this direction you can blame me, I pushed for this and pushed hard. The Caroline in this version is manipulative, covert, and deceptive and she’s really good at it. So good that Lizzie can’t see it and that even members of Lizzie’s audience can’t see it.

As for Caroline’s motives, if you’ve read the book, you know she wants to be with Darcy and wants Bingley (Bing) to end up with Georgiana (Gigi).

If Darcy saw Lizzie’s vlog, the “misunderstanding” part of his relationship with Lizzie immediately ends. If Bing saw the vlog, he knows that Jane truly likes him and that misunderstanding/insecurity immediately ends. The guys seeing the vlog is the absolute worst thing that can happen to Caroline and the BEST thing that could happen to Lizzie (but of course Lizzie doesn’t know this).

So Caroline strategically befriends Lizzie, gains her trust, and then convinces Lizzie into thinking what actually would be the best thing for her would instead be the absolute worst thing for her and that makes our Caroline the powerful adversary that I felt she needed to be.

“The best way to destroy an enemy is to make him a friend.” – Abraham Lincoln.

Read Part 2 – about Lydia/Mary is here

Part 3 – about everything else is here

BTS: The Polarizing Lydia Bennet.

This is post is syndicated from Bernie Su‘s Tumblr

I’ve been wanting to post about Lydia for a while and now that we’ve temporarily split her off from Jane and Lizzie I feel it’s now a great time to do it.

Lydia is such a polarizing character in our version.  You either REALLY love her or apparently, really dislike her.  Personally I’m glad that this character is giving our audience such a polarizing reaction. A reaction I doubt she ever got in the book.

I do wonder if anyone who’s read the original novel came out of it going “OMG Lydia is my favorite character!”?  - Seriously… anyone?

Btw, that was one of my favorite comments we’ve ever gotten. If you’re an LBD Lydia lover then you know the answer to that question is a NO.

My Mother, who’s a big P&P fan and a big inspiration of why I took on this project, was really impressed with our Lydia… (granted she’s my Mom and is thus biased). But seriously  she’s a huge P&P fan. She’s watched all the movies, all the miniseries, and reads the book every couple of years. She’s may not be an Austenite but she LOVES Pride and Prejudice and believe it or not she LOVES our Lydia. When Lydia comes on screen, she gets a big smile on her face and can’t stop laughing.

She pointed out how much she hated the original Lydia, not that the character was poorly executed but hated in the “this girl is so immature, silly, embarrassing, out of control, and selfish” way, basically how I’m speculating Austen intended her to be. Oh and I’d like to point out that our Lydia is still ALL of those things.

So to me, if you dislike our Lydia then well she’s doing what the original character was supposed to do for you. So if you hate our Lydia, well that’s perfectly fine, cause originally you were supposed to dislike her. She was supposed to drive you crazy, because she drove her family crazy.

But if you like our Lydia, well then we succeeded in taking a character that was pretty annoying and obnoxious and turned her into one of the great spectacles of our series. We’re doing our best to give her layers and depth. It’s meant to be subtle but it’s there and we’ll continue doing it. She’ll still do what she does in the narrative but now she’ll be  a fun person to watch grow, develop, and “be Lydia”.

Thanks for watching!

canihaspie:

See:

Let’s look at the facts in the book:

  1. Lizzie is afraid Lydia will become ”a flirt in the worst and meanest degree of flirtation… — Vain, ignorant, idle, and absolutely uncontrolled!”
  2. “Elizabeth had frequently united with Jane in an endeavour to check the…

BTS: The mega week for TheLBD

This is syndicated from Bernie Su‘s Tumblr

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Hey Everyone,

Wow it’s been a crazy exciting week for us at The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. First we sent Lizzie and Jane the Netherfield putting them face to face with Caroline and Bing Lee. Looking at the stats it’s safe the say that this week has been the biggest week for us thus far. Episodes 27 and 28 are our two most commented episodes ever for obvious reasons.

But that isn’t all, earlier this week we announced that we’re going to LeakyCon and we could not be more excited. I look forward to meeting some of you there and hope you can make it out.

And our final surprise… Lydia Bennet started making her own videos! Yes we spun off a web series that is only 13 weeks old and we brought in our fourth new cast member, (cousin) Mary Bennet.

Anyway, I’m gonna take the time to answer several of my overflowing tumblr inbox  questions. Note: I can’t answer all of them, some I don’t know the answers to, some I’ve already answered, and some I just don’t want to answer because I want you to enjoy the journey with us.

1st question…

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Flockenkind was referring to this previous post and yes at that time we were casting 4 characters and yes Collins, Caroline, Bing, and Mary were the four we cast.

We didn’t announce Mary at Vidcon because frankly we simply forgot about her. —  JUST KIDDING!. Honestly we didn’t announce her because

1. We hadn’t finish casting her yet.

2. We didn’t want to announce or tip off the Lydia spinoff so early.

I will say that we’re now starting the process of casting ANOTHER character. – Fun times ahead.

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Ah good question theunlikelylifeofher. We had this planned pretty early on and we teased that another character could be vlogging at somepoint. We all kinda knew it was going to be Lydia, if anything she felt like the only one who would actually do it. The girl is practically a narcissist after all. The question really was when.

Personally, in the whole “experimental storytelling” realm that this show continues to dive deeper into. We wanted to keep alive the stories of as many characters as possible during our journey and since we’re splitting Jane and Lizzie from Lydia for the time being I really wanted to answer the “What the heck is Lydia doing while her sisters are in Netherfield, question.”

Obviously this mini-story isn’t addressed at all in the book and so we get a lot of freedom here. I will say that Lydia’s vlogging right now remains an “experiment”. She probably won’t be vlogging continuously for the rest of the story but her and Mary will have their little adventure during the Netherfield arc, and hopefully Lydia will have another adventure when Lizzie leaves again.

And if you’re wondering about Charlotte. She’ll still live in Lizzie’s edits, but there really isn’t a clean way to bring her on screen in any of this. Her story is continuing in real time as are the rest of them we just wont be seeing it because she’s not going to show it to us.

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Hello again cosettespeaks. I don’t mind people asking multiple questions. I mind people repeatedly asking questions that I clearly can’t answer. Like “Could you show me a picture of Darcy… pleaaaasse?!” =).

Anyway, Hank and I answered a version of this question at Vidcon and so far it hasn’t changed. Basically the “book” will take us about a year to do. Maybe exactly a year, maybe a little less, maybe a little more. – Basically think 12 months + or – 2 months.

I totally understand the note that we’ve been moving at a slow pace up until now. As for why we moved slower than pretty much every adaptation ever, the big reason was to setup and establish characters and relationships. There are some critiques of the novel that say that aside from Lizzie, Darcy, and maybe Jane, every other character was one dimensional. Whether or not you agree with that is up to you (I kind of half agree with it), but we really wanted to make sure every character felt multi-dimensional and alive. So that meant we needed to take time to REALLY setup critical characters like Charlotte and Lydia so that when “stuff” happens between them and Lizzie, we as an audience will feel the hit as strongly as Lizzie will.

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Thanks Colourfully-minded. Well, we’re planning to go straight through to the end of the book but you never know what will happen.

If you asked Hank and I this question before we started I think you would have gotten different answers from both of us. I do kinda remember that we thought we’d take a break in the story right around episode 24, but as you can see we clearly didn’t.

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Anyway thanks for the questions everyone, now back to working on the show.

BTS: Filming at Vidcon

Syndicated from Bernie Su‘s Tumblr

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Collins and Shooting at Vidcon.

Link to Video - http://bit.ly/TLBD24

Ok first off, I’ll say that this is not shot on a green screen. I’m not sure if I’m supposed to be flattered or not with the amount of comments thinking that it was but this was most definitely legit.

I’ll say that this episode and the one afterwards were by far the two hardest episodes that we’ve ever shot. For this episode, it’s a testament to Ashley, Julia, and Maxwell to pull off these long bits of dialogue literally on the floors of Vidcon. To be specific, we were on the 2nd Floor of the convention hall by room 212 around 10am on Saturday. There were literally dozes of people watching us film this, many of which clearly were fans of our show as they referred to Ashley, Laura, and Julia by name. – Those lucky fans were treated to seeing how we speed shoot an episode of our show. If anything, I was wondering if they could actually hear the dialogue and could piece together which character Maxwell was playing (since that wouldn’t be announced until a few hours later).

Anyway so Vidcon and introducing Collins. I’ll say that we didn’t know we were taking the story to Vidcon until about 6-7 weeks into the show, and really it was fortuitous timing and experimenting with making the show more and more meta. One thing I wanted to make sure of was that taking the show to Vidcon had to add to the story and/or drive the plot forward. I’m not sure if you think taking the series to Vidcon seems overtly gimmicky or not. I think someone like our Lizzie Bennet, who is a video blogger, who’s grown this audience almost overnight, would actually go to Vidcon but regardless there’s still that layer of it being a stunt/gimmick.

So whether or not you think this is a gimmick, we did our best to honor the show by making sure that both this episode AND Thursday episode drive the plot forward.

As for Collins himself, everyone who has read the book will have their own version of Collins and wether or not Maxwell fits that or is too “good looking” for the part. I for one never thought appearance was a factor here. It’s not that he’s bad looking, it’s just that he’s self absorbed, has a massive inferiority complex, and is incredibly socially awkward. – He’s perceived to be annoying, but like our show is, annoying is a Point of View. As Lydia is “annoying” to Lizzie while being loved by many of you, Collins, in a way,  will probably be the same.

BTS: More Characters – More Locations – and Vidcon

This Post is syndicated from Bernie Su‘s Tumblr

From Amy on Facebook: “Hey, I love the vlogs A LOT, but after 18 episodes can there be more characters and vlogging locations? This show is too genius to be limited to four girls talking in one room. Thanks for considering :)”

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Hi Amy, and everyone else!

So yeah we’re 18 episodes in, and still going strong. So I caught this question on Facebook and I figured I’d answer it here.

Before I get into it I’ll say that if you haven’t read the book, watched the movies or miniseries, and don’t plan to then I’ll say that you probably shouldn’t be reading my BTS posts. They’ll tend to get spoileree since I’ll reference the source material a lot.

To be clear I personally have no problem as to how you choose to experience our story.  It moves all of us creating the show when someone says “I love the book and I love the show” just as much as when someone says “I have never read the book but I love the show”. We’re trying to design it/tell it so that you don’t need to know the source material to enjoy it. Honoring the source material for the built-in audience while introducing it to new audiences.

So on to the question! – If you’ve been following my BTS posts you’ll know that I did say we’ll eventually get toBing and Darcy, and basically hinted that we will be moving locations. —- I’m not a fan of spoilers so I’ll remain vague, but the video diaries will go where Lizzie takes her camera, and if I remember the novel’s sequence correctly Lizzie’s journey goes something like this.

Hertfordshire (where the Bennet house is and where we are now) > Netherfield > Hertfordshire > London > Hunsford > Rosings > London > Hertfordshire > Pemberly > Hertfordshire.

Though we may not be following that sequence to the letter you can see that there is a clear roadmap of where we may be heading.

As for expanding the cast, I’ll say it is already happening. Again not to spoil specifics, but we are in the process of adding four new characters to the cast. Unless you’re an actor and following our casting breakdowns, I’m pretty sure you won’t be able to accurately guess which four we are adding.

Finally, to those of you who are going to Vidcon, and are planning to attend our Lizzie Bennet Diaries panel with Hank, myself, and our four current cast members, you’ll be in for some awesome “treats.” We’ll definitely have some surprises for you.

Our panel is on Saturday, June 30th at 1pm in room 205AB

Oh and I’m happy say that our panel moderator is the awesome Kristina Horner.

BTS: The Yay Charlotte Effect

This post is syndicated from Bernie’s Tumbr.

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Hi Everyone,

Sixteen episodes in now. Wow SIXTEEN (17 with that Q&A). That’s 8 weeks of continuous videos with more to come.

Those of you following along in the book will know that we’ve wrapped up chapter 6 and we’ve been here a while. When I was doing my analysis/coverage of the novel, Chapter 6 was rich with great elements and it really felt like we needed to spend some time here covering the events and the characters.

For this BTS week, I’d like to focus on Charlotte. I know the audience always wants to ask about Bing and Darcy (and now Wickam) but that is all coming. Resources and being locked in from Lizzie’s POV limits us to what she can show us but I’ll say that we will see the other characters.

Now on to topic. I’d like to point out that one of the big thematic changes that I felt needed to happen was that our modernized/contemporary version of the story could not be completely focused on.

1. Marriage
2. Men

Obviously Pride and Prejudice does hyperly focus on those two things given the time period but as I said before, this is a different generation. Lizzie Bennet Diaries is a story about modern women, 2012 women. Women who are striving for higher education and/or career aspirations and/or other goals that are more than just “putting a ring on it”.



Side note: I feel a little embarrassed that it took us 16 episodes to finally pass the bechdel test (where our characters don’t talk about men), but given the source material, it was no easy feat. We also directly adapted a scene from the novel that DOES NOT pass this test and I’ll admit that it wasn’t totally a clean adaptation, but I’m happy we did it. I’m extremely proud of our team, especially Ashley and Julia for drawing out this great episode. - Episode 16

So on to the modern woman, or in this post, the modern Charlotte. In early development (Hank and I talking story) we really wanted to focus on making our characters great.  Personally I pushed to really develop Charlotte and bring her into the front of the story (remember she appears in episode 1, she doesn’t appear until chapter 3 of the novel). I think the character is decent in the novel but was really underdeveloped in both the 1995 BBC miniseries and the 2005 Keira Knightly movie. Thus in our series, we pushed to have our Charlotte not only be a “supportive best friend” but really a character that the audience loves to see on screen.

As I like to say the “YAY CHARLOTTE” effect.

Seriously think about every other adaptation (or even the novel) have you ever, EVER, saw Charlotte enter a scene and get excited that she was gonna lay down her “Charlotte-ness”? – Doubt it.


We consciously made our Charlotte a force to be reckoned with. Though they’re best friends, Charlotte directly counters Lizzie’s “prejudicial” opinions to the audience, and she’ll “playfully” embarrass Lizzie openly on her vlog.

Personally I believe that this is (at least in our version) the backbone of their relationship and mutual admiration and respect for each other, which of course sets up what will happen to them in the future as their opinions begin to separate them.

That was funny. I will not affirm nor deny that our Charlotte will do the above. We know what we’re having her do and I hope you enjoy where we take it.

Also be sure to check out Monique’s awesome write up about our Charlotte on her blog.

Have a good weekend everyone and thanks for watching.

A Darcy Video Blog?

The following is syndicated from Bernie Su’s Tumblr

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Hey Everyone,

Twelve episodes in and WOW does time fly. I hope you all appreciated our bonus Q&A video from two weeks ago. The team worked hard to make all of Lizzie’s answers both rewarding and entertaining. I also still laugh thinking about Mary Kate’s double shushing, it’s definitely one of my favorite moments in the show thus far.

Those of you who are following along in the book should know that we are now into Chapter 6. And those of you who know the book well know that Chapter 6 is a BIG chapter. Thus it’s safe to say that we’ll be spending several videos here.

So topic of the week: I’ve been seeing a few, okay a lot, of requests about having Darcy or Bing Lee have their own video blog.

That is some serious support!

So why so much support? Well I think it’s basically these two reasons.

1. We (the audience) really want to see them!
2. We (the audience) really want to see their side of the story!

Both very reasonable audience requests. Bing Lee and Darcy are definitely important people in our world and they have stories that certainly can be told.

But I’m sorry to say a Darcy or Bing video blog won’t happen. Sure, I could tell you a dozen reasons as to why they won’t, reasons like “not splitting our creative resources for Lizzie’s Diaries”, but there’s only one reason that trumps them all and that is Character.

Darcy and Bing Lee would never actually video blog. It’s not that they can’t (literally anyone with a camera can start a video blog), it’s that their characters would never do it.

Darcy is a proud, quiet, entitled, soft-spoken guy, with a high sense of social elitism.  That doesn’t sound like someone who would consciously turn a camera on himself to rant about his daily life to the internet.  The character leap it would take for Darcy to start video blogging would be like Lizzie Bennet captaining her collegiate cheerleading squad, it just feels ridiculous.

In my mind, if you were to ask Darcy directly if he’d do a video blog, he’d either sternly answer with “what’s a video blog?” or “I don’t have time for that”.

That made me laugh.

Bing Lee, is in a similar boat, just has too many things going on. Sure we know he’s charming, but he also has that social elitism, he’s not publicly vocal about his feelings, and he’s a medical student (so he’s freaking busy). Though, because of his charisma, he’d probably be a pretty entertaining video blogger, he would never initiate it. The idea of him doing such a thing would never come across his mind.

Anyway, I’m sure the longer and longer we go without seeing Bing and Darcy the more and more support a Darcy or Bing vlog will get. To be honest it’s been something that Hank and I have discussed, but it really needs to make sense (production, story, and character wise) for us to do it.

I’m also going to highlight one more comment that got little support but really nails what would happen if Darcy or Bing made video responses to Lizzie.

Well said.

I will leave you all with a nugget about other characters video blogging. We haven’t committed to anything yet, but I’ll say that we’ve had serious discussions about having another character do it.

Thanks again for watching and sharing the show. I’m sure if you’re reading this you’ve seen our small but growing new merch line over at DFTBA. Though I don’t think I could personally pull off the shirt, those buttons that Hank put together are ridiculously cute.

Coming Together

The Following is syndicated from Hank’s Tumblr
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I just think it&#8217;s amazing that these people came together to help me make a thing and now they&#8217;re friends and they seem to really like doing this thing and I really like what they&#8217;re doing and other people really like it too. <br /><br />
It was my idea (and my money) but it&#8217;s mostly other people&#8217;s execution. The control leaves my hands pretty quickly until the footage gets back to me (then I get to mercilessly hack at the footage until I have something I love.) But this is the biggest project I&#8217;ve ever done that wasn&#8217;t under my direct control 100% of the time, and that&#8217;s both really scary and really rewarding. <br /><br />
So I just want to say thanks to all of the people who have helped make this happen. Also, I can&#8217;t wait to actually meet these ladies which, yes, I haven&#8217;t done yet. I find this odd, but it is possible that I will actually be a tiny bit star struck.

I just think it’s amazing that these people came together to help me make a thing and now they’re friends and they seem to really like doing this thing and I really like what they’re doing and other people really like it too.

It was my idea (and my money) but it’s mostly other people’s execution. The control leaves my hands pretty quickly until the footage gets back to me (then I get to mercilessly hack at the footage until I have something I love.) But this is the biggest project I’ve ever done that wasn’t under my direct control 100% of the time, and that’s both really scary and really rewarding.

So I just want to say thanks to all of the people who have helped make this happen. Also, I can’t wait to actually meet these ladies which, yes, I haven’t done yet. I find this odd, but it is possible that I will actually be a tiny bit star struck.