A little while ago I was tweeted and asked by the good people at PGC Studios if I'd be interested in helping to share the love for their current movie project, The Honeymoon Phase. Well, I say that they're "good people", after all it's fair to say I don't know them very well, I'm just assuming. On looking at their website and digital network pages everything seemed all well and above board - just a new Philadelphia based multimedia production company with some grand and vibrant plans for the future. No signs of them belonging to secret Pennsylvanian Wicker man sects, no signs of ritual bathing in the still warm blood of their independent movie making enemies and no apparent affiliation to Russian mobsters/Russian plans to influence Government elections - what, too soon?
So in an effort to allay my fears that they could be Wicker-burning-blood-soaked-revolutionaries we at 5D decided that we would have a nice little chat to find out a little bit more about PGC studios.
Q) First of all, tell us a little bit about the people behind PGC studios.
We are a husband and wife team.
About Phillip G. Carroll Jr:
Phillip G. Carroll Jr. is an emerging independent filmmaker from the suburbs of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and the founder of PGC Studios, LLC. Phillip studied Film & Media Arts at Temple University where his film, Words of Atonement, won Best Undergraduate Film his freshmen year. Phillip strives to tell meaningful stories that capture the truth of the human condition, challenge society’s views and beliefs, and most importantly are a joy to watch. Through the collaboration of many talented artists, Phillip’s award winning films have been screened at festivals around the world, along with four of his films having been streamed on Comcast OnDemand. Phillip's mission is to create movies that ultimately lift the human spirit, promote love, and encourage others to follow their dreams - all in an effort to help people realise that whether your life is like a drama, comedy, or horror film, you are never alone.
About Chloe Hendrickson:
Chloe Hendrickson is a U.K. trained actress and one of the CEOs here at PGC Studios. With her love of performing arts, Chloe runs the Casting Department where she enjoys matching actors to the perfect role. She loves interacting with fans through the PGC Studios social media streams and is your first contact upon reaching out to the company. She has been featured in multiple award winning films both domestic and abroad; including A Slice of Life, a short film that ranked in the top 200 for Season 4 of Project Greenlight. Though she can walk in the shoes of any character that she is cast, horror is her passion and she always tries to get involved with horror projects. Chloe has recently spearheaded the creation of Fear Crypt Productions which is now officially the horror wing of PGC Studios. Escapism drives Chloe’s love of film. Her mission as CEO at PGC Studios is to take you into a whole different reality to escape from your everyday life. But beware… if its a Fear Crypt Production, your reality may become a nightmare...
Q) What sets apart PGC from other film companies? Go on, sell yourself!!!!
PGC Studios is a multimedia production company that specialises in creating cinematic story driven content. Through the creation of our feature films, commercials, and corporate videos, our goal is to make you, the viewer, feel emotion. Whether that be through laughing until your sides hurt, screaming until you wake the neighbours, crying as you place yourself in someone else's shoes, or sitting on the edge of your seat as your hero faces off against the villain - we here at PGC Studios believe that the greatest gift you can give someone is to make them feel alive and connected to each other. Whether your life is like a drama, comedy, horror, or some genre bending mashup in between - you are never alone, because everyone has a story to tell.
Q) What are your thoughts on the current indie film industry and the changing nature in how we watch films?
The film industry as a whole has been changing since its beginning in the late 19th century. With video cameras and editing software being so readily available today, anyone can become a filmmaker. This is awesome! The slight downside is that their is an abundance of content. Though its harder to have your work noticed today, I’m a firm believer that the cream will always rise to the top. All of us indie filmmakers have to step up our game to tell the best, most unique stories possible. Theatrical distribution is increasingly becoming home to mainly blockbuster films. Indie films that are not festival darlings have a very hard time breaking out. Even on Netflix or Amazon Prime, unless people already know about you or your film, there’s probably very slim chance they will find your work.
The good news is that because of smart phones and the Internet, people are also consuming more video content than ever before. Its up to us as filmmakers to also be marketers so that we can take advantage of all of the platforms at our disposal. We need to build communities online around our films and create buzz about our work on social media. There are so many different ways to have your work shown today, we just need to let people know where to view it, and more importantly, why they should watch our films.
Q) What are your personal movie obsessions?
Phillip: Its funny, The Honeymoon Phase is psychological thriller, but my current movie obsession is La La Land. As an up and coming filmmaker trying to make it in the industry with my wife and creative partner, actress Chloe Hendrickson, I completely relate to the story of chasing your dreams alongside the person you love. I love the cinematography, creative use of lighting, production design, musical score and pure joy the film elicits. I think as a filmmaker your job is to breathe life into any project you work on through the lens of your own personal life experience. So where Damien Chazelle created a musical romantic comedy, Chloe and I are creating a psychological thriller with The Honeymoon Phase to explore the nature of relationships and identity.
Chloe: My favorite movie is 'Gone Girl' I love complex female villains and that's the best one I've seen on screen.
Q) I’m particularly interested in the ‘horror wing’ of the company, Fear Crypt Productions and particularly enjoyed 'Wicked Conclusions', the short film that features on your website - tell us a little about the philosophy and plans for this area of the company.
Chloe:I love watching horror shorts, and I had so many horror ideas that I thought would make great films, so I wanted to create a production company in order to do this. 'Fear Crypt Productions' is fairly new and we don't have a lot of content there yet but we canguarantee as our company and fans grow...so will the content. We will continue to create more and more scary shorts so our fans can pick and choose from a wide variety of horror sub genres and watch all the ones they are interested in.
Q) You're about to embark on your first full length feature - The Honeymoon Phase. Firstly, what is the premise of the film?
The Honeymoon Phase is a psychological thriller following struggling young lovers, Tom and Eve, who must endure a 30 day scientific study. Room, board, $50,000 and a month alone together in research facility housing.
What could possibly go wrong...
Q) Tell us about the cast & crew.
We are currently in the process of attaching people to the project - all that information will be released in the next few months. All of our social media will announce who is on board the project as they attach themselves to the film.
Q) What sort of budget are we talking about and what are the challenges in terms of financing a film of this nature?
Our initial budget for The Honeymoon Phase is $25,000. We want to pay everyone in our cast and crew some form of compensation so that they do not have to struggle to get by while we are shooting. $25,000 allows us to compensate everyone, though I wish we could compensate them more! In terms of challenges, this will be our first time crowdfunding. We will be using Kickstarter as our platform, so its all or nothing. I think the greatest challenge for us will be expanding our Kickstarter supporters and viewers of the film past our circle of friends and family to reach a broader audience.
Chloe is already working to create a community of supporters through The Honeymoon Phase's social media pages. Our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram all have the username - @WhoYouMarriedTo. We’re hoping this unifying tag line will fuel the curiosity in people to want to know more about what happens in the film.
Q) You plan to show all aspects of making this film from script to post production. What's the reasoning behind this and in what form will this take?
Ever since I saw the behind the scenes featurettes for Jurassic Park as a kid, I have loved watching how movies are made. I think its wonderful, especially for kids and teenagers, to see what goes into making a movie. Robert Rodriguez, the prolific indie filmmaker, kept extensive notes on everything he did while making his first feature, El Mariachi, with the intent on turning it into a book chronicling his experience - Rebel Without a Crew. I like to think if he did the same thing today, he’d use his iPhone and Facebook Live. Chloe and I want to throw open the curtain to reveal exactly what goes into making your first independent feature film. What better way to do it today than through vlogs and Facebook Live videos? Chloe and I’s goal is to create a community around the film of people not only interested in the story of The Honeymoon Phase, but of people who are also interested in learning about how to make your first feature film. I think there is something mythic about a director’s first film. I would love to share my own experience with other filmmakers - either by giving them tips on what worked for me or by warning them about what not to do when making your first film! Later this spring, in the run up to The Honeymoon Phase, I’ll be launching a podcast called Your First Time where I chat with directors about making their own first feature films. I figured one of the best ways for myself to prepare is to talk to other filmmakers about their first times. That and its therapeutic haha. If you’d like to check it out, please visit https://www.pgc-studios.com/yourfirsttimepodcast.
If anyone reading this has made a feature film before, I’d love to have you on the podcast to hear your story!!!
Q) Besides the feature film, what are your plans for the future?
While I am in post production on The Honeymoon Phase, I will begin writing the screenplay for my second feature film. Chloe and I will be heading out to L.A. as soon as the film is complete to shop it around and to use it to pitch our second feature film. The goal is to slowly build a film making career off of the success of each one of our films.
Thank you very much for taking the time to interview us. I hope you and your readers will enjoy The Honeymoon Phase when its complete!
We’ll be launching the Kickstarter later this spring. To learn more please visit our website at www.TheHoneymoonPhaseFilm.com and follow one of our social media pages for the film:
I'd like to thank Phillip & Chloe for giving me some of their valuable time to talk to 5D and I offer my genuine hope for their future success. Keep your eyes peeled for future collaborations between us and them!