Have you ever lived with someone you dated and then broke up… What do you do? Who gets to stay? Or better yet who gets the Disney DVD collection including the one with your favorite new heroine Queen Elsa? Well, have we got something special for you. Til Lease Do Us Part, a new lesbian web series about ex-girlfriends Mikka and Shannon which follows their cohabitation after their untimely demise, is on our radar, and it should be on yours too! Season 1 might have already aired on YouTube, but if you’re smart (which I know you are) you’ll head on over to The Gay Women Channel and binge watch the heck out of it. Multiple times.
Sarah Rotella and Adrianna DiLonardo, creators of this witty, heartfelt series are also the masterminds behind that video Gay Women Will Marry Your Boyfriends, which you know has over 5 million views, no biggie or anything. Not to mention they’re the ladies behind “Pillow Talk,” a weekly show where hilarity ensues, and “Faking It Friday”, a whole vlog dedicated to fangirling over Rita Volk’s abs, I mean– recapping with sass MTV’s rookie series Faking It.
The dynamic duo, who met many moons ago in their high school tech class have been making videos together ever since and thank goodness for that! The two chatted with me about their love of MTV’s Faking It, their role in the Entertainment industry and boys. Ha. Just kidding, although hottie doucheface may or may not have been mentioned in passing during this interview.
MCKENZIE MORRELL: How did The Gay Women Channel come about? And what’s the story behind your YouTube username being called “Unsolicited Project”?
ADRIANNA DiLONARDO: A couple years ago we produced a comedy web series about the Hollywood film industry called “The Unsolicited Project”. So we created our YouTube channel specifically for that series. A couple months later, we decided to do the lesbian version of the video “Gay Men Will Marry Your Girlfriends,” which went viral. So we decided to re-brand our channel for LGBT comedy content.
GWC has over 121K subscribers on YouTube, a large following on Twitter and other social mediums– when did you both realize that you had something great within the channel?
AD: Haha honestly, we kinda go back and forth everyday on that. Some days we are like, our channel is great! Look at how many subscribers we have, people love it! And other days we are like, why are people watching this, no one likes this, what are we even doing.
SARAH ROTELLA: We did “Gay Women Will Marry Your Boyfriends” because we thought it was a funny idea. I remember surpassing 800 views and thinking how awesome that was. We never made it thinking it would go viral, but once we saw that people were responding positively to it, we decided to continue producing content.
You’ve received some substantial celebrity attention, from none other than Katie Stevens of MTV’s new breakout series Faking It… do you guys fangirl over the attention people in the industry have given you?
AD: We fangirled so hard when Katie Stevens tweeted at us and gave us a shout out. I told my sister about it and she joked “you guys are almost, almost famous now”. It was seriously one of the coolest moments ever.
You have such great content, and such a wide variety for ladies to choose from– where do you get your ideas, and how long does it take from conception of an idea to actually making a video?
AD: It depends on the video. We have a couple segments like “Pillow Talk,” “Gay Aunt Barbara,” and “Cooking With Lesbians.” For those videos we will brainstorm a couple of ideas of what the topic will be and we can shoot them within an hour. Other videos that are more topical, we try and shoot as fast a possible to stay on whatever is trendy, like “Gay Women Will Marry Your Boyfriends”, and “First Gay Hug.” Other videos, one of us will just come up with something randomly, throw it by the other and if we both think its funny we will shoot it.
SR: We always shoot in blocks so sometimes we’ll do 5-6 videos in a weekend. If it’s timely, we usually come up with the idea, shoot, and get the video online in 2 days.
Can each of you tell me a little bit about yourself, and what drew you to writing, directing, and the Entertainment field as a whole?
AD: Basically, I have always loved making people laugh. Ever since I was young I always wanted to be a part of the film and television industry. Originally I wanted to be an Art Director or Cinematographer, but then quickly realized I had no talent in those fields what-so-ever, so I stuck with what I was good at: mildly-offensive jokes, and decided to write instead.
SR: I was always drawing growing up, I used to illustrate and write my own comic books. When I started making movies in high school, Adrianna and my other friends would shoot on the weekends just for fun. We did a lot of mocumentaries where we’d take turns filming each other and making up these ridiculous characters. I think laughing and having fun with my friends is what really made me want to pursue film and tv as a career.
Your new series Til Lease Do Us Part just hit the web a few weeks ago, what was the process of getting that written, made and distributed on the web? What has the response been to it so far?
AD: We did that series pretty quickly. Sarah wrote a short, that was similar to the plot of TLDUP, and we thought that it would work great as a web series. The entire shoot took a weekend and the distributing process was 6 weeks. Which is pretty crazy. It helped though since we shot it in one location, and used our Gay Women actresses. People seem to like the episode with just Mikka and Shannon best, both actors had really great chemistry together, which shines through.
What do you think is the hardest thing about getting a web series out there and getting it to actually succeed?
AD: Getting people to watch and share I think is the hardest. And to keep coming back to watch it. If we make a second season, we would release all of the episodes at once, so people can binge watch Netflix style. I also think it’s important to do something different, which is why we wanted to do each episode in one shot.
Content on the web seems to be the future of Entertainment, but, if given the opportunity to adapt your content to a TV series would you want to do that? And as of now are there any plans to delve into that world?
AD: Yes absolutely. Ultimately that is my main goal. I want to write for television. YouTube is a great platform to build a brand and showcase your talent, but eventually we want to expand into the television and film realm.
SR: I wrote and directed films before producing content for YouTube and I think we’ll both end up back in the film + tv world. But we’ll probably be making “Pillow Talk” until one of us dies.
If you had to describe each other to a total stranger, what would you tell them?
AD: She could beat Xena in an arm wrestling competition.
SR: Former child star that always eats all she can eat.
What are some of your favorite shows you’re currently watching?
AD: Orange is the New Black, duhhh (but we binged watched that in like 3 days). House of Cards is our current obsession, like, Robin Wright?? Come on now. Orphan Black, Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, The Vampire Diaries (kidding, not kidding), and Faking It, OBVI.
SR: Ditto minus GOT + VD, and add True Detective.
Among many things, you two recap/review MTV’s Faking It, which is hilarious and down right awesome, now that we know we have a season two what are your hopes and predictions for the fate of the characters?
AD: Well obviously, I do want to see Amy and Karma get together. BUT, I want Karma to go through a little bit of what Amy went through, not so much the discovery of her sexuality, but the pining and hoping that she can get Amy back. Basically I just want some damn lady kisses! And I want Liam Booker to go far, far away.
SR: By Liam Booker she means hottie doucheface.
Do you two ever disagree on an idea you have and how you want it to be executed on the channel?
AD: Sometimes one of us will come up with an idea and the other will think its terrible. We are both pretty good though about talking through it and agreeing if it’s worth shooting and putting online.
SR: I trust Adrianna’s sense of humour, so if she isn’t onboard with an idea, I usually trash it. Unless I feel really strongly about it and convince her to get onboard, then it bombs, and I don’t try to convince her again for a while.
If you could star on Faking It, who would your character be and what would they be like on the show?
AD: I would be a college student that meets Amy at the lesbian bar, and totally steals her heart with my wit, charm and oversized glasses. I would then get arrested for sleeping with a minor, and sent off to Litchfield where I would woo Piper Chapman with my wit, charm, and oversized glasses.
SR: Urma’s love interest.
Karma or Amy?
iPhone or Blackberry?
Netflix or Hulu?
Netfllix (we don’t have Hulu in Canada!)
Cats or dogs?
AD: Sadie otherwise dogs.
Zombies or aliens?
AD: I’d be more afraid of Zombies, but Aliens are cooler.
And lastly, what is the weirdest or nicest comment someone has ever said to you– whether it be on YouTube or Twitter, or via email.
SR: Someone e-mailed me a picture of them self in a bra.
AD: That is true. I can’t top Sarah’s answer.