I recently had the chance to sit down with actor turned writer-director David Marciano to discuss his first scripted series directorial assignment on the web series, Kat Loves LA. The first two episodes premiered Sunday evening on You Tube and their website. Links to the episodes are below along with a review of each.
Audiences might remember Mr. Marciano from the FX series The Shield as Detective Steve Billings, as Virgil in the hit Showtime series Homeland and most recently as David Utey in the USA Network series, Shooter based on the Paramount Pictures’ feature film.
I asked Mr. Marciano what inspired him to make the transition from being in front of the camera, given his impressive resume of roles spanning more than 30 years. He shared with us that it has been a learning process as he has taken the time to write and direct segments on various projects over the last 20 years. He also mentioned that as he enters the second phase of his career, roles were becoming less and less frequent, so it was the right time to remain fresh and inventive by jumping behind the camera as a director.
His latest assignment as director of the web series Kat Loves LA is a departure from the traditional serialized nature of television. I asked him how difficult the transition has been and he mentioned that it was really no different from doing serialized television. If anything, he mentioned that he had a lot more creative freedom, afforded by his prior years as a writer, director and foremost as an actor.
Along the lines of “creative freedom,” he mentioned that he had an 8mm camera when he was a kid back in New Jersey and he has had an eye for sizing up a shot, placing the actors and knowing how to work with them to get the best take. His prior experience behind the camera has ranged from commercials for the clothing company, The Gap and the California Lottery to short subject documentaries.
Kat Loves LA is the first scripted series directing assignment for Mr. Marciano, but that hasn’t stopped him from bringing a level of comfort and confidence to the set. He came on the project after one of the most successful crowdfunding efforts by a web series and based on the first two episodes, now on You Tube, his confidence in Paget Kagy’s script and characters shines through.
Below is our review of the first two episodes. They are on a break for the holidays and will return on Sunday, January 8th with episode 3. The remainder of season 1 will be released on successive Sundays.
I’d like to thank Mr. Marciano for taking the time to speak with us.
Episode 1: “This is Kat” – In this first episode, we meet Kat, played by writer-producer Paget Kagy. We find her in a funk as she auditions for a role that she’s clearly not ready for. The episode, which runs just under 10 minutes establishes Kat’s character as she tries to hide from everyone, including an ex and her friend. The episode will speak to those who are still searching for the right mate and starts Kat on the road to self-confidence. The episode ends with Andrew (Matthew Um) pulling up to Kat’s apartment.
We’ll see where this goes in . . .
Episode 2: “Meet Andrew” – In the second episode, we quickly learn the trials of dating someone of the same race, in an offbeat way. The date, as you can imagine ends very quickly, but Kat finds some of her confidence to tell Andrew off. The off color language is perfectly timed when they run into each other the next day in an Uber. Andrew’s date, Jenine (T’Land Balue) doesn’t buy their act. Director David Marciano makes an appearance as Dan, the Uber driver, who offers some well-intentioned wisdom. When Kat visits with her grandmother, she is given the funniest clue to what her next steps should be. Mr. Marciano’s use of modern technology, especially with iMessaging sound effects truly conveys emotions very well.
I’m looking forward to the next episode, Sunday, January 8, 2018 on You Tube and on www.katlovesla.com. Stay tuned.