It’s official. Felicia Day is a certified web star. The creator, lead actress and producer of what has become the gold standard for independent web series, The Guild, has redefined what it means to be a star. Some were introduced to her this summer through her standout performance as Penny (she can sing!) in Joss Whedon’s summer mega-hit web series Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog. Still millions more have been with her since her few episodes as Vi on Buffy or even the early days of The Guild. Matt Enlow wrote an excellent piece on Why We Follow Felicia: Analysis of The Guild’s Success Story, which summed it up this way: “Above all, Felicia brings savvy and grace to web video. She knows her stuff, hell – she helped invent it.”
Season 2 of her hit series The Guild premieres today, fresh off the heels of a massive sponsorship and distribution deal with Microsoft and Sprint. New episodes will run exclusively for the first four weeks after each release on MSN, Xbox 360 Live and Zune Marketplace. With the launch of the new season, Felicia sure has been busy—juggling production of The Guild while also shooting a role in ABC Family’s upcoming comedy Roommates. We managed to grab a few minutes of her time to chat about the long awaited sponsorship deal and what to expect from Season 2.
Tubefilter: Is everyone back from Season 1? Has time passed, or do we pick up right where things left off?
Felicia Day: We pick up about a week after Season 1 so no, very little time has passed.
Tubefilter: With Zaboo’s mother defeated in Season 1, can we expect a new, more terrifying ‘villian’ this season?
Day: The Villain this season is less concrete. You could call the “boss monster” inter-guild relationships. I wanted to explore the characters more and how they interact together, but there’s definitely action, don’t worry!
Tubefilter: The new Guild website and community features (Ning) have really stepped it up this season. Will there be additional ways for fans to interact with the show?
Day: We are excited about the revamp of the site, featuring the new video wide screen player. Episodes won’t go on our site immediately on release, but they’ll be downloadable in HD/widescreen through Xbox Live Marketplace and streaming weekly on MSN Video. We want to build out our ning community site, at community.watchtheguild.com, as the place audience can interact with other fans and cast and crew members as well! There is a chat room, forums, blogs etc. It’s a great resource. We also have a Warcraft guild, info is on the Ning site, where we play and relax, and plan on doing a few live stream events during the season. Also, we will be doing a few conventions next year to meet fans, and who knows, maybe an LA meetup is on the horizon, that could be fun!
Tubefilter: You’ve certainly been busy this fall, have you managed to find time to play WoW (or other games) at all?
Day: Um, sadly, I just hit 70 right before the Lich King Expansion came out, so yet again, I’m behind the curve. The accelerated production schedule, due to weekly episode roll-outs rather than monthly, has really taught me a lot about production, and why there are so many people on a TV or movie set. Each of those crew members is necessary to make the show quick enough! We finish filming the season mid-December and I am looking forward to a Christmas break with Spore, WOW, Fable 2 and Rock Band 2. To name a few
Tubefilter: Congrats on the Microsoft and Sprint sponsorship deal that was just announced. What made you choose them as partners?
Day: It’s an amazing opportunity. We turned down DOZENS of deals for the show because I wanted to retain creative autonomy, rights and keep the grassroots spirit of the show, as well as partner with a person who could distribute on a global level. Xbox has been a fantastic partner in enabling us to grow the show and up our production values, I can’t think of a better pairing.