Memphis, TN (PRWEB) July 25, 2013
Have you heard the one about the guy who owned a headshop? It goes something like this: “Some pipe dreams do come true.” Shock Collar Studio invites you to find out for yourself on August 15, with the global launch of its web series Head Shop.
Written and directed by Giri Swamy and produced by Melissa Azzi, the show was shot over a little more than a month in early 2012 in locations around Memphis, featuring an entirely Memphis-based cast.
“In the past, if you wanted to create a film or a show, you had to go through someone else,” Swamy says. “There were channels of control for creative, for distribution. Now, you can control it. My website is just as accessible as NBC.com or Hulu – it means we can take risks, and that’s what we did.”
The show follows the life of Will (Shaun Green), the owner of a head shop in Memphis who gets mixed up in the illegal drug trade when his business begins cutting in on street profits. Swamy said the inspiration came from his real life experiences as a doctor.
“You’d see people come into the ER, and they’d have done bath salts,” he says. “So I looked into it. Legal narcotics – it was fascinating. Everything was legal at one time. Cocaine, ecstacy. This is just that moment in time, and here we are, experiencing it. I wanted to capture that.”
Swamy decided to shoot the series entirely unscripted. Actors were given the parameters of a scene, cameras rolled and they improvised.
“I wanted it to be naturalistic, as real as possible,” Swamy says. “The characters were all created as archetypes, so we had these very clear pictures of who they were – they could just be themselves and react in these different situations.”
“It’s like reality TV done backwards,” Azzi adds. “It’s about as scripted as reality TV – it’s closer to The Real World than it is to Law and Order.”
Swamy and Azzi will celebrate the global online premiere with a VIP event on the same date in Memphis. Viewers worldwide will be able to access the first two hour-long episodes of the show for free on YouTube and Vimeo beginning August 15. The three remaining episodes in the series will cost viewers $2 per episode, or $5 for all three.