We receive a ton of tips every day from independent creators, unaffiliated with any major motion picture studios, television networks, new media studios, or other well-funded online video entities. The Indie Spotlight is where we’ll write about and shout out to a select few of them and bring you up to speed on the great (and sometimes not-so-great) attention-grabbing series you probably haven’t heard about until now. Read previous installments here.
For the third time in five weeks, the series featured in our Indie Spotlight adapts a classic work of fiction. This time, the target is Romeo and Juliet, and the modern twists are a vlog format and a fratty college setting. That’s the one-line description of Jules and Monty, which has now completed seven episodes.
The words “vlog retelling of…” will instantly make any seasoned online video fan think of The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, Bernie Su’s award-winning adaptation of Pride and Prejudice. In the comment section of the first episode, the Jules and Monty creative team admitted the influence of Lizzie Bennet.
Jules and Monty has a few things going for it, though, that make it more than just a Lizzie Bennet clone. For starters, it eschews Lizzie Bennet‘s Vlogbrothers-inspired editing in favor of a less jumpy, ‘shakier’ style. It is also mixed in the original text more liberally. Creators Edward Rosini and Imogen Browder, students themselves at Tufts University, throw in plenty of lines from the original Shakespeare while weeding out the more complex language. This allows viewers who may be unfamiliar with the source material to get a better understand of the sort of dialogue Shakespeare created.
The third difference, of course, is that Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy, and thus Jules and Monty‘s creators will have some interesting decisions to make as their series nears the original play’s morbid conclusion. Though the tone is fairly light-hearted, I don’t have high hopes for Jules and Monty’s survival. It’s a shame, too–there’s a lot to like about these star-crossed lovers.
OTHER UNDER-THE-RADAR SERIES TO CHECK OUT:
- Saige Winters: My Psychic Life. This series takes a satirical look at the life of a New Age-y, “psychic” therapist.
- #TEENS. A sketch about a group of #teens who just want to #tweet about how much #schoolsux and use an excessive number of #Instagram #filters.
- Cost of Living. The latest web series about young people with sparse income takes viewers to a rapidly-gentrifying area of San Francisco.
- Beverly Pills. A socialite has her world rocked where she learns that her rich father’s home is about to get repossessed.
Got a series you’d like to see featured in the Indie Spotlight? Be sure to contact us here. For best coverage, please include a full episode in your e-mail.
This edition of Indie Spotlight is sponsored by Tongal. Tongal is changing the way creative work gets done, by making it accessible to people everywhere. For brands, studios, and causes, Tongal’s innovative platform provides continuous access to a global network of creatives, offering fresh ideas and insights, and top filmmaking talent to bring them to life. Tongal’s collaborative, merit-driven process enables everyone to focus on the work they do best. The result is outstanding content delivered with great speed and efficiency. Tongal is based in Santa Monica, California.