JACKSONVILLE – Do you ever wonder what the office would be like if Jim and the Dunder Mifflin crew worked in a restaurant?Well if you have, then that’s the essential premise of the new …
JACKSONVILLE – Do you ever wonder what the office would be like if Jim and the Dunder Mifflin crew worked in a restaurant?
Well if you have, then that’s the essential premise of the new YouTube series “Lemoncurd.”
The web series follows Virginia Lemoncurd, played by Jacksonville actress Laura Mauldin, as she begins her journey to create her own home cooking show with the help of producer Abe, their camera crew who does not stop filming no matter what and “her less-than-interested in anything she does husband,” Duke.
The series is being produced by Drew Brown, a Middleburg High School graduate, who heard about the series from a friend, Abigail Saenz.
But this wasn’t always the plan for Brown. He said that at one point he was going to St. Johns River State College with the idea of becoming an art teacher.
“I had an epiphany one day that I really wanted to do film,” said Brown.
He went on to the now-closed Art Institute of Jacksonville, and 2 years ago Saenz, showed him a rough draft of the script and he decided that he needed to be a part of the show.
Mauldin came up with the idea of the show from a character she created on the video-messaging app, Snapchat.
“I don’t think Snapchat even had the ‘Stories’ feature yet so I saved all the videos on my phone and strung them together using some app I had at the time,” said Mauldin. “The character was completely different but the idea of a bored, restless housewife character trying to get her husband’s attention with food was there.”
While the show is being shot in a home in Jacksonville’s San Marco community, Brown said it’s “very much inspired by the easygoing, southern mentality atmosphere of Middleburg and the residents who live there.”
The show has just released its third episode and is running a GoFundMe to help produce the rest of the first season. Their goal is to raise $10,000, which will allow producers to comfortably
budget the subsequent episodes, including funding film equipment, wardrobe, props and
paying the artists who devote their time and dedication to the show.
So far, the reception has been very positive, and the show has been gaining a following.
“It’s been absolutely incredible seeing how much people like it,” said Mauldin.
Lemoncurd did a film festival premiere at the LOL Jax Film Festival, a short film festival held in Jacksonville, where they met fans for the first time.
“I arrived at the festival on day 2 and got swarmed by people who wanted to talk to us about the project, tell us how much they liked it, and wish us well,” said Mauldin.
It was after this that they realized that the show might have something extra to it.
More and more creative projects are being shown online rather than being pitched to a TV studio. Artists are choosing to fund their project themselves, maybe with help from fans, and put it out through their own channels.
“It’s a really effective way to have people see your work and to see your content on what you’re working on,” said Brown.
You can see companies going more towards the online platform as their effective way of having their content seen.
Roosterteeth, an online production company based in Austin, Texas, was started in the bedroom of one of its founders, Michael “Burnie” Burns in 2003. The company now has 8 locations and employs over 300 people.
Online streaming companies, such as Netflix, are distributing exclusive shows such as the hit show “Stranger Things” on its platform.
Whether the eventual route that Mauldin and Brown take the show is not known just yet, they hope to take it wherever they can.
“We’ve gone to great lengths to try and make this into something special and it would be a great reward to have the opportunity to let it grow,” said Mauldin.
The first episodes of the series can be seen here.
Viewers can donate online at their GoFundMe account here.