'Search Party' Indie TV on TBS Network - Coming in 2016

The episodic screening of the TV Series ‘Search Party had its world premiere during SXSW 2016 followed by an extended 30 Minutes Q&A with the cast and creators of the series. The TV series is led by Alia Shawkat (Arrested Development),  and an ensemble of young comic actors, John Early,John Reynolds, and Meredith Hagner.

The pilot of the ‘Search Party’ series centers on “Dory,” a fragile, frustrated, and life-long doormat who's not particularly proud of her impact on the world, especially since her greatest accomplishment to date is organizing clothes to be donated to Goodwill for her wealthy employer. "Dory"feels stuck in a stale and disconnected relationship with her boyfriend,“Drew,” a kind of clueless, complacent, spoon-fed doofus who just really loves Christmas. She also feels removed from her closest friends, "Elliott, "a self-diagnosed narcissist who loves adding job titles to his  designer-stylist-curator multi-hyphenate lifestyle, and Portia, an actress who is always struggling to balance the challenging demands of chronic insecurity and pathological self-absorption.

The series was created by Sarah-Violet Bliss and Charles Rogers, whose credits include the 2014 SXSW Film Festival Grand Jury Award-winning feature film “Fort Tilden” and “Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp.” The executive producer of the series is Michael Showalter (Hello, My Name Is Doris, Wet Hot American Summer) and Lilly Burns.

Review Pilot

The TV series Search Party has a different appeal. The fact that the series was created independently just like an indie film makes the series unique. The disappearance of "Chantal," makes the pilot very captivating (Chantal is a missing girl who they can barely remember from college, they become entangled in a sinister plot that is more than their privileged Brooklyn lifestyles ever bargained for). Mystery is an unquestionable additive element of the series since the main characters of the series are in the process of  developing their destiny. The person missing may represent the lost feeling and confusion of many millennials who are represented in the series by characters who are trying to find a meaningful purpose in their world and emerge as young people at a higher level. Watching a series and growing at the same time with the characters could be interesting either if you are a millennial yourself or in the case that you are the parent or friend of a millennial that is hard to understand. The younger generation has a big spectrum of wants and needs and those mysteries will be figured out in the series. The series seems to be a missing gem in the TV series universe. 'Search Party’, the North Brooklyn-set series will be premiering this summer on TBS.  The beauty of SXSW 2016 was to discover unique films and specially TV series like Search Party, the series has a combination of drama, plot and comedy,  and it will be for sure one of your favorite TV show “A la carte”.

LA Splash Magazine by Yenis Monterrey  Exclusive Interview with the Cast and Creators.

Yenis Monterrey.- Meredith Hagner, John Reynolds, and Alia Shawkat what can you reveal about your characters?

Meredith Hagner.- “I play"Portia" in ‘Search Party.’ She is an actress who is chronically insecure, and she is unsure of who she is or what she will be doing with her life as she deals with issues she has with her mom. She constantly needs validation.”

John Reynolds.- “I play"Drew" in the Series 'Search Party.' "Drew' is basically this naive guy who is probably twenty something and he dates "Dory. "He wants the relationship to be fine and normal, but the relationship isn’t there and he struggles with it. He is selfish in the relationship and sort of takes from her and he isn’t the most supportive, but inside he is a sweet guy.”

Alia Shawka.- “I play "Dory," she works as an assistant of a wealthy lady, she doesn’t really have any goals in life, she is a little lost. She really gives a lot for her friends, but she doesn’t get anything in return.”

Yenis Monterrey.- How different from other characters is Dory in comparison with other character you have played in the past?

Alia Shawka.- “Dory is kind of a wildflower, she doesn’t know how to speak up for herself. Things need to change for her and this is really relevant because she is starting her way. I try to make my character real and acting is reacting. As young characters in our twenties we  have the tendency to define each others because of our friends and sometimes this can be dangerous.”

Yenis Monterrey.- How do you define the relationship between Dory and Drew?

John Reynolds.- “They are in that stage in the relationship where they have been together for a long time and they love each other and they feel comfortable and depend on each other, but they aren’t necessarily still in love. They are in that kind of relationship where they ask themselves what they want and what is good for them and they need to step out of the comfort zone, like asking should we get married or what to do next?”

Yenis Monterrey.- As a producer of the series what can you tell me about the series? How was the process of pitching the show or the making of the TV series?

Lily Burns.- “The process of making the show was unconventional, the process of financing the pilot was made independently and we pitched it to different networks. We are very lucky that TBS picked us up and they understand what the show really is, but basically we made the pilot like we were making an indie film and we brought it to the market place. We made it independently because we didn’t have a network when we made the pilot.”

Yenis Monterrey.- The series has excellent actors and you can find out right away after watching just the pilot. How was the process of making this project possible?

Lilly Burns .- “We had Alia, and she is so talented and we were looking for people who were able to mirror the show and make strong performances.”

Sarah-Violet Bliss.- “Charles Roger and I made a feature titles  “Fort Tilden and it was in SXSW in 2014. We really liked working together and we were trying to figuring out what our show will be and then we went to Transmedia where we met Lilly Burns and Tony Hernandez and all together we created the show and made a film with a tone that wouldn't have happened without each of us.

Yenis Monterrey.- What can you tell me about the scriptwriting process?

Michael Showalter.- “Everything in the process of scriptwriting is about what you imagine what you want the story to be and what will happen and then working backwards. We talk about how everything is going to end. We thought if this is going to happen we ask ourselves how is it going to end and how we build up the characters to the ending. We think first how the story ends and then fill in the blanks and constantly change the details as we go. Our show has a complicated plot.”

Charles Rogers.-” The series of 'Search Party' is a very unique process and we were able to create this pilot ourselves and with TBS we're extremely lucky that the network is very supportive of the vision. We are so in love with story and we can’t wait for the audience to be able to watch the show and see where it goes, since the show gets darker, funnier and scarier.”


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