Haviland Stillwell Discusses New Queer Roles and Shows
A few months ago, at ClexaCon 2019, I was able to talk to Haviland Stillwell. I saw her on a panel during the previous ClexaCon edition and watched her as part of my review of Freelancers Anonymous. I wanted to know a bit more about this movie, something she said on that panel, and her role in BIFL. You can find a written version of the interview below, but you can also watch it in the added video.
Haviland Stillwell on Freelancers Anonymous
Me: “It has been a few months since Freelancers Anonymous has been
released. What has the response been like?”
Haviland Stillwell: “The response to Freelancers Anonymous has been really positive. I think one of my favorite things about the film is that it’s so female positive. There are so many principal females in it. And we were all saying on set when we were making it that usually when you’re doing a film, there’s one or two other women, who are principal characters. And in this one, there were so many. It was entirely principal females actually and we don’t usually get the chance. You know, there’s usually like one older woman and one younger woman. It doesn’t happen often that we’re sort of all in the same age group and all getting to work together. So that’s been really positive.
Also, it’s a funny movie. It’s a rom-com and you know, it’s nice to just have a good old-fashioned funny movie. And my character is completely ridiculous. So, there’s that too.
Me: “What was the energy like on set?”
Haviland: “The energy on set was really fun. Because it’s a comedy, a lot of things… I mean, we took it seriously in terms of getting our work done and everything. But there was also a lot of laughter and a lot of really genuine support. Sonia Sebastian, the director, who’s amazing, would say ‘cut’ and everyone was like: ‘that was great,’ ‘you nailed it,’ ‘you kicked ass.’ So, that was really cool too because there was a lot of really positive comradery, which I like.
I’ve definitely been on sets where it’s not like that or it’s higher stress or people aren’t as positive. So, I have learned that I really value that and it is a more positive environment. Like with anybody in their work environment, if you have people around you who are giving you the thumbs up, you’re going to want to work harder. You’re going to just be more encouraged to do better work.
Haviland Stillwell on BIFL
(This interview took place in April, months before the
release of BIFL)
Me: “You’re in BIFL too. Can you tell us something about that project?”
Haviland: “Yeah, I heard somebody say it’s kind of like a drama with a lot
of comedy or comedy with a lot of drama, depending on what lens you’re viewing
it through. To me, it’s more of a comedy. It’s a roommate/buddy kind of a show.
My character is the big sister of one of the girls who lives in the house.”
Haviland: “I am the kind of person that… I think any of us, who have gone
through hard times or gone through depression or anything like that, you have
that person in your life who just is so eagerly trying to make everything okay.
They’re just like: ‘but what can I do to make it okay for you?’ ‘Why can’t you
just be happy?’
Not that they don’t really understand; they’re so eager to do that. That’s
who I play. There are a lot of opportunities to make fun of my character
because it is sort of like ‘there’s that optimist.’ I also say that she’s a
controlling optimist. Like: ‘Everything’s fine. I’m going to make sure of it. If
I have to drag you kicking and screaming, you’re going to smile!’ We all rely
on that person in our family, especially who’s kind of pulling us up a little
bit, but who may have cracks in their veneer as well.”
Haviland: “I think it’s primarily a show about young adults who are finding
their way. Like, one of the characters is dealing with depression.
One of the characters is dealing with being in love with her best friend. And
that, you know, we’ve all been there. We have all been there! Literally don’t
know an LGBT person who hasn’t been in love with their best friend at some
point. So, there’s that too. There are a couple of characters that you’re sort
of like: ‘Okay. I know she likes her. Is that going to happen? What’s going to
happen?’ I think it’s a lot about people just trying to find their way in the
And so, my character is definitely there to show a slightly different
perspective and also a slightly older perspective, to be honest. Just like: ‘Okay.
I’m not 21. I’ve kind of been where you’ve been.’ And my character is married.”
Does Haviland Stillwell still get nervous?
Me: “We can
watch BIFL at ClexaCon tonight. Are you nervous?”
Haviland: “No. It’s great actually
because at this point, I’ve done so much. I started in theater. I was on
Broadway before I did film and TV. You know, leading up to the opening night
was so nerve-racking. You were so nervous and excited for it. So, it’s like: at
this point, we’ve done the work. The work is done. There’s nothing I can do at
this point. Either people will like it or they won’t. So, I’m more excited to
see it and excited to hear the reaction in the room.”
Queer roles for Haviland Stillwell
year, you were on the LGBTQ actresses’ panel. I heard you say something along
the lines of ‘Somebody pass me a queer role already.’ Did that happen already?”
it did. Yes! I’m very excited to say yes. Actually, I played several gay roles
this year but the one I’m the most excited about is that I actually played… There’s
a film coming out called Reckoning with Richard Dreyfuss and Mira Sorvino and I
play Mira Sorvino’s girlfriend. So, I’m very excited about this, because
obviously, I love her. I mean, she’s an incredible actress and she’s so great. So,
when that came about, that was really exciting.
isn’t specifically about it; it isn’t a gay film specifically. It’s just that her
character happens to be gay. I think that was even a cooler part of it. Because
it wasn’t like… It’s definitely an element in there, but it wasn’t like ‘oh,
this is a film about being gay,’ which I think is happening more and more. That
we can just exist in the world as gay characters instead of it being this film
about how we’re gay. As far as I know, we don’t have a date for that yet.
project called Between Friends that will be filming in the fall, which I’m
excited about. And I just had a Hallmark movie come out. So, there are lots of
things. I play a gay character on an animated show. They told me I’m not
allowed to talk about it yet. I play a totally Punk lesbian on the show and I’m
like: she’s so cute! She’s like such a cute little drawing. Oh, I will happily
tell you as soon as they allow me to talk about it.”
A few months ago, you were able to read my review of Good Kisser. At ClexaCon in April, I was able to interview the cast. I had not watched the movie yet, but I did have some questions for Rachel Paulson, Kari Alison Hodge, and Julia Eringer. You can read my interview with the Good Kisser cast below this image or watch the video.
The Good Kisser cast is
preparing for the premiere
Me: “Am I
correct that you had your premiere last night?”
was a sneak preview.”
we’re having our official premiere at the Seattle International Film Festival,
which we’re really excited about.”
“That SIFF life!”
was the response yesterday?”
was great. People were laughing, like so, so much.”
keep saying, I didn’t realize how funny the movie was until I watched it, and I
was in a room of people that were laughing hysterically.”
was really funny, and I think not just to us, who… Obviously, we find each
other and the situations we’ve been in funny. The jokes were landing, and it
people also laughing at things you didn’t expect?”
I didn’t expect half of those laughs.
I was literally like oh, well, that was funny. But when I was laughing, the
room was laughing with me as well.”
The Good Kisser cast may have been nervous
we were very nervous.”
was like two drinks in. You know what I mean?”
was the most nervous.”
was the most nervous. Definitely.”
Kari: “Were you nervous?”
wasn’t nervous to see it. I was just nervous about the Q&A afterward.”
The Good Kisser cast was present for a Q&A after the sneak preview
did they ask you during the Q&A?”
asked us what it was like to watch it. And yeah, we said the same thing about
the comedy and also when the sex scenes were coming up. I was going to Rachel:
round one! Okay, round one done, now round two, what’s that going to be. You
know, because there are three rounds.”
“Yeah, we were sitting together like: here we go! We were all holding hands.”
it was fun, though, because I don’t know about you guys, but I relaxed pretty
soon. As soon as I saw that beautiful drone aerial shot, right at the beginning,
I was like: this is beautiful.”
was like oh, we’re okay.”
okay, and it’s always nerve-racking because if you haven’t seen the film and
you’re watching with a bunch of other people, you just don’t know how it’s
going to go.
Besides sex scenes, what more can we expect from the storyline?
you tell us what the movie is about, for those who don’t know? We now know
there are sex scenes in it.”
“Many, many sex scenes.”
“Spoiler alert. It’s about three people. These two gorgeous ladies play a
couple, and I play a very independent woman. We have one night, a date night,
the three of us, where we’ve arranged to spend the evening together and just
see what happens.”
“That is the best interpretation of the movie. I really like that. It was so
cute. I was so much harsher than you guys. It takes place in one night.
Essentially, we decided to spice up our relationship to bring in a woman, and
there are some secrets unraveled.”
“There are a lot of secrets, for sure. Everybody’s keeping secrets.”
“That’s what makes it interesting. Every
character has at least one thing they’re hiding from the other two characters.”
The Good Kisser cast discusses power levels
drew you in? Was it the comedy or something else?”
was drawn in more from the emotional side, not from the comedic side. From the
different levels of power between each couple, and the self-esteem issues, and
all the idiosyncrasies of each character and how they interact.”
it’s funny. I think any time you have three characters in… It takes place in
one location one night. That’s very, very intimate, you know. If you don’t like
the three of us, you probably don’t like the film because it’s us. It’s us the
whole time. Because of that, you really get into these three characters, and
you see the dynamics at play, and the politics between all of them in the
different relationships that are there. I love movies like that.”
me, it was something I had never seen before. There are so many movies about,
you know, different types of relationships. But I had never really seen a
script that was literally just the story of three people’s relationships and
how amazing it can be but at the same time how crazy that can make everyone
feel. And all these secrets and all that stuff. I think the threesome situation
was really an interesting concept for me in the script.”
there anything that stood out to you while filming? Maybe a scene?”
“Yeah, I think the mask scene. When we all saw that, we were kind of like: oh,
that’s what they were doing.”
we were shooting it, it was incredibly awkward at first. Incredibly awkward. And
we were just relying on each other and feeling out the moments. Because we were
doing some very, very intimate things, and there was a crew of people watching
us like a theater show. But we were just kind of winging it. We were just like:
“Let’s do this, I guess.”
And oftentimes when you watch a movie and characters are dancing, they don’t
get music when they’re acting. Right? So, we’re just dancing to no music for
most of the takes. It feels…”
people watching these incredibly intimate moments that you know… If you’re
having those moments with people in real life, there are no people watching you.”
For the Good Kisser cast, it sometimes felt like a play
And if you’re dancing with someone in real life, there’s probably music
playing. And when you’re making out, and it’s getting to this place where
you’re starting to become attracted to each other, there’s not a room full of
people watching you. And, like you were saying, it was a lot like a play. We
were playing out this entire scene, a long scene, and it was really blocked out.
We had to hit all of these different areas, and we were walking through this
whole scene. And we were like: how are they even going to edit this? I didn’t
understand, and then we saw it, and we were like, oh, I get it.”
Diving into their
the characters close to you in real life, or did you really have to dive into them?”
every character that I do, I completely create their own history and their own
memories. So, I’m never mixing my personal history with the character. That’s
just how I work.”
the opposite, which is interesting. I always try to pull pieces of the
character from my own… I also do the background thing, but I try to pull pieces
of whoever I’m playing from my actual experiences. Because I feel like that
helps to ground it for me. I think that’s cool that you do that and I do this,
and it’s a completely different thing. I definitely think Kate has some things
that are mine. She also has some things that aren’t mine.”
guess I do a combination. I’m playing her so there’s a lot of me in her but…
And again, as Rachel said, I will try to use things. You know, I’ll try to use
things that turn me on, when Mia is going to be turned on rather than
fabricating things that would turn Mia on and try to get turned on by those,
for example. But yeah, she’s very different from me. Probably it was the
biggest jump for someone, me from Julia to Mia. I don’t know; for me, it seemed
quite a big jump. She’s just very free, very experimental. She marches to the
beat of her own drum. It was a challenge for sure. She’s fun.”
When and where can you watch the Good Kisser cast and movie?
Twenty a Webseries: Interview with Lily Richards and Caitlin Combe
At ClexaCon 2019, I met Lily Richards and Caitlin Combe of Twenty a Webseries. Twenty is one of the few good LGBT+ webseries currently available, and so I was really happy when they agreed to do an interview with me. We met Friday night at the Filmmakers Mixer and were doing the interview Saturday morning before the event officially started. That’s dedication! In this blog post, you will find the interview written down, but if you can, watch the video. These women are a blast to listen to and they have incredible stories to share.
ClexaCon 2019 for Twenty a Webseries
Me: “Thank you for coming. I love Twenty a Webseries, so I was really happy to bump into you last night. You were here last year. How is ClexaCon for you this year?”
Lily Richards: “It’s really exciting being here again. When we came last year, we just finished up season one. So, we hadn’t even started releasing season two. It’s really cool to see how the following has grown from last year to this year, to come and to meet a whole wave of new fans of the show, and be able to be involved in another capacity than last year. I feel we’re even more part of the community now and it’s awesome.”
do people tell you when they talk to you?”
guess it varies. A lot of people said they really liked the show. They enjoy
the humor of it. They enjoy the relatability of it. Some of our favorite
comments that we’ve gotten have been when people said like ‘the shows helped me
become comfortable with who I am and things like that.’”
Caitlin Combe: “Like, ‘it helped me connect with my parents or show friends and family what I want my life to be in regards to the normality of being queer in a non-queer space.’ That has been really heartwarming to watch. It helped mend relationships as well, which we had no idea would happen.”
got a lot of dad fans, which is awesome. A lot of dads who are like watching Twenty
with their kids.”
Responsibility for Twenty a Webseries
Me: “Do you
feel a certain responsibility all of a sudden?”
Lily: “To a
degree, I also feel like, by virtue of the lack of queer content, every time
you make anything that is representing the queer community, there is already
that built-in responsibility to show your community correctly and to not buy
into stereotypes and to not, you know, kill off your queer character,
obviously, right? I think there already was that sense of responsibility in
making this. There is a huge community that’s underrepresented in media, and it
was our job to make sure that we were getting the right image out.”
Trying not to be super offensive
did you get the idea for this show?”
graduated from Emerson College in 2016, and upon graduating, I was going to
come back to LA and predominantly pursue acting. Then I started going in on a
lot of auditions for gay female characters that were just super offensive. They
were like, ‘Oh, she’s like stealing this boyfriend’s girlfriend, she’s a
horrible person, she’s also a murderer…’ There was just never anyone who had
a storyline other than being gay and I was just very fed up with that.
wanted to create a show that had queer characters and was the starring queer
women but wasn’t focused on their sexuality. That was kind of just how Twenty
started. I was really lucky; we have a lot of incredible friends who are very
talented at improv. We were able to get them in, and just kind of have fun with
them and create the show together and see what happened.”
Me: “So, I
think it’s pretty radical to open your webseries with like the ‘we want to have
a threesome with you’ conversation and how to navigate that conversation. How
did you come up with that?”
found myself in that situation a few times, where I was like ‘Oh, I thought we
were friends. Oh, you want to, oh ok…’ So that was sort of the impetus for that,
and I know that we’ve experienced that a lot.”
Caitlin: “As a gay couple, or even just like going to a bar with friends and there are straight guys, and they’re all like…. ‘I’m sorry. I’m not interested. I’m dating her. Not into men…’ And then, all of a sudden, they’re like ‘oh well, we can tag-team it…’”
my favorite expression because it sounds like we’re all going to do a marathon.
We can pass the torch!”
Caitlin: “It’s definitely something that we’ve never gotten as close as Maya does in Twenty to that situation as a couple, but… Especially when we first started dating, even friends did it, and it was like ‘Oh, okay…’ So we’ve experienced that a lot. I think we just go to less straight places now. That’s why we don’t experience it as much anymore.”
been together long enough that people are like ‘maybe not a good idea…’”
Twenty a Webseries aims to flip the trope
wanted to talk a bit about the characters on the show. Because they are
precious, but they can also be a lot to handle sometimes. Where did you get the
idea for them?”
kind of wanted to flip the trope on its head. You know, how you watch most comedic
TV shows and you’ll have the straight character, and then you have the wild,
quirky gay best friend. So, I wanted to flip that a little bit, and that’s why
we have Maya, who is the more grounded of the bunch. And then we have Tina, who
is just off her rocker. An absolute blast but someone help her. So, I wanted to
have the straight character being the one that was kind of just absolutely wild.
Because, yeah, I mean, we have straight friends who we’re like ‘yo, calm down!’”
Dorn, who plays Tina, is just a phenomenal actress and Kathy is the sweetest,
most pulled-together person you’ll ever meet. But it’s funny because she is so
good at playing those roles. I’ve been in a play with her in college where we had
a similar dynamic, where I was the more stoic one, and she was just out there.
I really enjoyed working with her, and I had so much fun with her in that show.
And so, I really wanted to bring back that dynamic, but put our own twist on
I left a
lot of Tina up to her because I knew she could handle it. Sometimes, we would
start filming a scene, and if she wanted to improvise and go off-script, I was
like ‘go for it! Let’s see where it goes.’ And it was all so funny. So, with
Tina specifically, that was the concept behind it. Thankfully, we had such fantastic
actors who were able to take the part and roll with it and bring it to life.”
humor of the show is so good. I was wondering if there was ever a scene that
you just couldn’t get through because it was so hard not to laugh?”
there were a lot.”
Caitlin: “So many. The first one that comes to mind was actually not an episode of the seasons, but we did these…. Between season one and season two, we wanted to give our audience some more of the characters while they missed them while we were doing season two. We did a few ‘how-to’ videos with the characters, and I think the one that we really struggled to get through was how to taste wine.
I posted a photo on the Twenty a Webseries Instagram of Lily, and she looked as if someone just told her a loved one passed away. The tears from laughing were so intense. It’s funny because Reyn and Sarah, who play the characters, were totally cool and stayed in character. It got to the point where our sound guy just couldn’t stop laughing. He said: ‘I’m sorry, we have to pause because I can hear myself laughing. We have to stop.’ That was something that was a mess.”
Straight man fashion
Caitlin: “You were so tired that day from laughing.”
told Reyn and Sarah ‘Well, this is a funny thing. Let’s have a Victoria and
Charles try wine tasting. Obviously, Charles will have no idea what he’s doing,
but he’ll be really confident about it.’ Classic straight man fashion. I just
had them go with it and my God. Reyn is such a funny guy, such a good actor,
and both of them were incredible. They just improvised the whole thing. They
improvised for like twelve or fifteen minutes. We just edited it, but it was a
blast. We had so much fun with that.”
then the other one… I think it is episode six of season two where Tina comes to
stay on Maya’s couch for a few days while Hector is away. She keeps
interrupting Maya and Catalina every time they try to have sex. That was such a
Caitlin: “She came up with a lot of the different weird things she would do.”
I had her come in for the scene where she interrupts us in the bedroom and is
about to go to the bathroom. For that scene, I said ‘Kathy, when you’re leaving,
I want you to improvise a weird story from today. Tell us something random that
happened to you. And she went on this whole thing about avocados, never having an
avocado before. A different one every time and they were all so good. So, we
definitely had trouble getting through that as well.”
Caitlin: “Yeah. Those were definitely the fun parts.”
Twenty a Webseries season two
Me: “I bet
the experience on set can be quite different, so that’s special to have. I was
wondering: going into season one, did you already have an idea for season two or
that you were going to make a season two?”
that was the goal. I really, really wanted to do a season two. At the end of
season one, we just decided. When we did the show, we had no expectations. We
were like ‘this is going to be a really fun thing we do. Hopefully people find
it. Hopefully people watch it.’ We were really grateful and lucky that people
did find it and that people did watch it.”
Me: “It is
so hard to get the first traction, right?”
I think that’s the hardest step, gathering that first fan base, getting those
people who are passionate enough about it to tell their friends.”
think I found it after about three episodes.”
what we’re hearing from a lot of people!”
Me: “It was
in my suggestions, and I was like ‘let’s check this out.’
got on the good side of the algorithm, I guess. But yeah, that’s when we
noticed it too. I mean, the first two episodes did really well; they both hit
like 5,000 views when we first released them, which is good, you know.
Caitlin: “Really big for people who had no idea anyone would watch them. We hit the first hundred views on episode one, and we were like ‘Yeah!’ We were sitting there, and we’re like ‘Oh my God, we got a hundred views; we’re on top of the world!’”
Me: “I know
Caitlin: “And the first hundred subscribers. And then now those things are so tiny compared to what we’ve got, but I think it’s really cool to remember how excited you were for those first views.”
Lily: “The first milestones, totally. So, after season one, we kind of took a look at it. We ended season one with almost 20,000 subscribers, and we were like ‘It would be dumb of us to end this now. People seem to really like it. People are asking us about a season two.’ Caitlin and I funded season one with our own money that we had in savings, so we knew we couldn’t do that again. We decided we were going to do an Indiegogo. We figured ‘if we really try hard, we can make the show for $20,000. And we thought twenty for Twenty would be funny.”
Caitlin: “Easy to remember.”
Indiegogo campaign for Twenty a Webseries season two
did an Indiegogo campaign and attempted to raise $20,000. We ended up raising $22,000,
which was awesome. It was very validating to exceed the goal. And we just went
right into it.”
you able to do something special with that extra $2,000?”
Caitlin: “So, Indiegogo does take a portion of the money out, but that extra money definitely helped pay off that charge. But honestly, I think it went more into submitting Twenty into the larger film festivals. For example, we submitted to the Streamy Awards, and that’s like the Oscars for web content. We had no idea if we were going to get in, but there’s like lots of little charges for film festivals like that, where that extra two thousand really helped.”
Caitlin: “And then once we had that, we were able to pay… We were really lucky; we got a lot of free locations, but we were able to pick a few that we had to pay for. It just boosts the production value. There’s a lot of scenes done in this one bar over several episodes, but it’s this crazy bar that has seven bars in it. And we managed to use that money to pay for that, and it helped with a lot of locations for this season.”
yeah, we were very grateful for that extra money. It’s funny; you think like ‘Okay,
this is the goal. But obviously, if we make more than that, we can make the
show even better.’ So, for me, I was so grateful that people kept donating
after we hit twenty because it did make a huge, huge difference.”
Twenty a Webseries merch
Caitlin: “Also, we were selling the Twenty pins, so people were able to buy merch, which helped.”
can still buy them on our Indiegogo campaign.”
I heard, when an Indiegogo campaign is successful, the link stays live. That’s
we did get the Streamy nomination.”
Caitlin: Yes, we did get the Streamy nomination after all that.”
God we submitted the series.”
Next step for Twenty a Webseries
Me: “I don’t know if you can talk about it but is something new coming for Twenty a Webseries?”
so hard because right now, everything is very up in the air. We’re kind of like
throwing spaghetti at the wall and seeing what sticks. We can’t make any official announcements, but
Caitlin: “Your goal was always to make queer content mainstream. So, after season one, we did season two. We kind of wrapped up season two in a way that closes the webseries and we could open it up for sure. There’s so much more we could do, and that idea is still there, and we play with it and see what happens. But definitely bring it somewhere bigger, maybe off of YouTube, would be ideal. It takes a long time to get there, but we’re having a lot of meetings, and we’re working with people. So, we’ll see. Hopefully in the next few months, we’ll have some sort of update.”
hoping to bring it to a network ideally, or you know, to make a feature film
based on the web series. Or to make a season three. It’s definitely not over.
We’re just unsure of where we want to take it next.”
More ClexaCon 2019 fun stuff
Want to read more about ClexaCon 2019? I’ve got you covered!
ClexaCon 2019 Sunday was a slower day as everybody was saying their goodbyes, visiting the final panels, and facing the first signs of post-con blues. I will tell you all about it in this blog post. I do recommend watching the video below this image.
Late start on ClexaCon
I had a bit of a late start this ClexaCon 2019 Sunday. After all, the day before, I had been awake for 22 hours, and I went to the Ascension party. As you can imagine, I needed some time to recover. Still, I woke up in time for the WayHaught panel, obviously.
think this panel is one of the most fun ones every single con. They always have
new stories to tell, despite the show not currently shooting for season 4. And
some of the audience questions are truly clever. You know, Earpers are fun, and
Emily, Dominique, and Kat always make me laugh.
I have to
admit that after the WayHaught panel, I returned to my room for another nap. After
about an hour or so, I went back to the convention area. You could definitely
tell that a sense of sadness filled the air. People were saying their goodbyes
to old friends and new friends. They were making their final merch rounds. They
were reminiscing. Everybody was feeling the upcoming end of ClexaCon, and the
post-con blues were already starting to kick in.
ClexaCon 2019 Sunday: hard to say goodbye
For me, it was also hard to say goodbye to some people. One of the biggest things I wanted to do before ClexaCon was meeting Avon and Lanie, who are the two geniuses behind Beyond Clexa. We had such a good vibe online, and I couldn’t wait to meet them.
Now I have met
them, and I hate the fact that we are living so far away from each other and
that we had to say goodbye. So, I ended up staying at their booth for about 1
1/2 hours. I definitely slowed down their packing process, but at least we had
a fun time. Luckily, after they had packed up, I was able to have dinner with
Avon talk about the con and delay the goodbyes for a little bit longer.
At about 9:30 PM. I was crashing. My jetlag had been kicking my butt all weekend, and while I had an absolute blast at the Ascension party, it was definitely hurting my body the day after. So, I packed my bags and went to bed at a decent hour.
The next morning, my flight was leaving at a reasonable hour, and so I had a reasonable night of sleep. I was definitely ready to go home because I was missing my wife and son. My son had been having a hard time with me being gone for so long, so it was good that my flight was leaving. This time, I did not have to experience the horrors of the flight to Vegas, and I arrived right on time.
It was a
sunny day, and I picked up my wife from work to have lunch together and to discuss
all my shenanigans. It was good being home, but it seemed as if I had just come
back from a completely different world. It was a surreal experience, and it is
good that I shot all my footage. After all, I have a hard time putting into
words what a weekend of ClexaCon means to me and explaining all the things that
Well, I hope you enjoy the videos that I have put up so far and the blog posts that I’ve written. So far, I still have a few things up my sleeve, so stay tuned.
believe that as I am writing this post, I am leaving for Love Fan Fest in
Barcelona in three weeks. Crazy!
I went to two panels on ClexaCon 2019 Saturday but I spent most of this day holding interviews. I actually had a few exclusive ones and there was a press room interview with One Day At A Time that I visited. In this blog post, I will tell you all about this day because it was stressful and truly heartwarming at the same time. I recommend watching the video below this image too.
An interview with TWENTY
The Web Series on ClexaCon 2019 Saturday
As you may have read in my last blog post, there was a filmmaker mixer on Friday evening. I ended up talking to Lily Richards and Caitlin Combe of TWENTY The Web Series. I was so happy to bump into them because I think their show was brilliant and last year, I didn’t have the chance to tell them that. We ended up talking, and they agreed to do an interview with me. We scheduled it at 9 AM the next morning, so I had a few hours to prepare questions and then go to bed to be all refreshed for this interview.
happy with how it went. As with any interviews, I was nervous in the beginning.
These women were so warm and happy to talk, though, that that we had an amazing
time. I left with a really good feeling. I can’t wait to show you this
interview, which will be in a few weeks.
ClexaCon 2019 Saturday starts with Nyssara
Then, it was time for the Nyssara panel. I have never watched Arrow, but the panel with Caity Lotz and Jes Macallan was so much fun that I decided to go to this one as well. Because Katrina ran on stage during the panel yesterday, I expected Jes to crash Katrina’s and Caity’s panel too. Well, I had to wait a long time, but after about half an hour or maybe 45 minutes, it finally happened. I laughed so hard. Also, I didn’t know Katrina, but I absolutely loved her personality. She had some quick answers, and I admired how she handled one particular attendee who, in my opinion, asked her obnoxious questions.
Sheridan Pierce and
After this panel,
I had to run to the press room again because Sheridan Pierce and Isabella Gomez
of One Day At A Time were visiting. I was really excited about this one because
I know Isabella is a very outgoing person and I wanted to discover what
Sheridan was like. I love that she looks sweet but can stand up to Isabella
with a single comment. The dynamics between those two are amazing.
Then it was
time for the moment I was nervous for the most. I had scheduled an interview
with the cast from Good Kisser. The reason I was so nervous was that I’ve never
had an interview with three people at the same time. Also, I hadn’t watched the
movie yet. They couldn’t send me a press screener beforehand, and I could not
visit the sneak preview because of the press room schedule. I knew the plotline,
so I could ask some general questions, and I had to find out the rest along the
way. Because three people were talking, it ended up going smoothly, and I felt
like we were having a good time.
I feel really lucky because Julia Eringer also plays in Girls Like Magic. Girls Like Magic is one of those web series where I was actually waiting for a new episode every single week. So, I told Julia that I really liked the show. She told me that Shantell was on her way to Vegas and asked me if I wanted to do an interview with the two of them. Hell yeah!
that, I started preparing questions. It was kind of hard because obviously, my
press buddies were also in the press room and it’s not like we can talk every day.
So, I was trying to catch up as well as prepare for the interview.
started to walk around because I also wanted to see the Cosplay contest. That
room was so packed that I just ended up walking around exploring.
At 3 PM,
Mika Epstein and Tracy Levesque from LezWatch.TV were having a data panel. I
wanted to show my support by going because we often bump into each other at
these cons and I really like what they do. Well, showing my support wasn’t
really necessary because the room was quite full. I’m impressed by their
presentation skills. It seemed like they were not nervous at all and had fun
Beyond Clexa’s booth
After that, I saw Lily and Caitlin walking around again. I wanted them to go to Beyond Clexa’s booth, and they said that they were already planning on going, so we all walked to the booth together. There, they found out that their ship name is on the 2019 ship it shirt. They were ecstatic. It was beautiful to watch. We took a bunch of pictures together to celebrate.
I received a text from Girls Like Magic saying that they were ready for the interview. I asked them to come over to the booth. They absolutely loved the representation matters shirt and wore them for my interview. I found out so many new things. Things took a bit of a twist at the end, and I feel it was a very special moment. You can see for yourself.
interview, I went back to Beyond Clexa because Lanie and Avon had told me that
Jes Macallan was going to visit their booth. We discussed that I would be
filming that moment and that I would be taking pictures. Like I said earlier, I
was so surprised by the warmth and enthusiasm of Jes. She’s such a wonderful
It was then time for Amber Benson’s panel. I was hoping that everybody could see what I saw in the press room the day before. She is witty and super smart, and she has a great message. I know that Dana usually does not want any sexy questions in her panels but Amber dove right in and gave us a few laughs. I think the entire audience fell in love with her during that panel if they weren’t already.
ClexaCon 2019 Saturday: red carpet
After dinner, I had to run to the red carpet event. It was one of my favorite memories from last year. Things were going to be different this year, though. We were not allowed to hold small interviews; we were only allowed to take pictures. I’m not a photographer, and there were a lot of professional photographers around me, so I decided to do what I do best: I recorded behind the scenes.
if you think the lighting in those professional photos is superb, I was
standing on the red carpet before the event happened so that the photographers
could test their lighting. Let me tell you: it is super uncomfortable to stand
there having a bunch of people taking your pictures. Now I get it why everybody
is so nervous.
were positioned at the end of the red carpet, those nerves were already gone by
the time they reached us. Also, there was no banner where we were standing, so
they put a plant there. It was funny to see some people like Jes, Kat Barrell,
and Emily Andras to just jump into that plant and pose. Then it became a thing,
and we asked everybody to pose there. It’s super funny to see how people
respond to that differently. As I was the last person, I also had the
opportunity to say a few words to everyone. So, that made my day. Even though I
could not hold interviews, this was still one of the most fun parts of the convention.
ClexaCon 2019 Saturday: Ascension party
That meant that it was now time for the Ascension party. Last year, I decided not to drink any alcohol or caffeine during this convention because of my jet lag. This year, I was not too sure. Someone super nice, whom I already was friends with online, immediately invited me into the VIP area to join her table. I’m still overwhelmed by that table’s kindness. It also led to a lot of vodkas. I decided to just go for it because as a mom, you usually can’t party hard. Even though you have a babysitter, there’s always a kid waking up at 7 AM or earlier. I thought: “Why not? Just enjoy it!” And that’s what I did. Thanks, everyone whom I ended up partying with!
2019 ClexaCon Friday with Wynonna
Earp and many others
In this blog post, I talk about the things that I have seen and experienced on the first day of ClexaCon 2019. Last week, I talked about the panels by and on BiPositive Podcast, Nicole Pacent, Queer Representation in Burlesque, One Day At A Time, and Avalance. This week, I discuss some of the other fun things that happened on 2019 ClexaCon Friday. I have added a video that I recommend watching if you want the full experience (don’t forget to subscribe!). I hope you enjoy it!
2019 ClexaCon Friday: pressroom
interview with Jes Macallan
After the Avalance panel, which ended on an emotional note as you may have seen, Jes was scheduled to come to the pressroom for an interview. But we all knew that she needed some time to recover, so we were just waiting there for her to show up when she was ready. Luckily, we didn’t have to wait too long, and she was happy and upbeat when she entered the room. She blew me away on stage during the panel, and she did it again in the pressroom. That woman is truly something special! Fun fact: on her way to the pressroom, she chatted with Katrina Law, who crashed her panel with a ‘Nyssara 4 life’ shirt.
interview, I meant to go to the Earper meetup. As I was on my way, I met some
lovely people who follow me. They actually just came from the meetup and told
me it was over. Oh well, that happens with these busy schedules. I guess we
turned it into a micro meetup?
2019 ClexaCon Friday:
pressroom interview with Amber Benson
I said that Jes was one of the two biggest surprises for me this con. The other
one was Amber Benson. She has humor, and she is opinionated. She understands
how everyone felt about Tara’s death in Buffy and how that death falls within
the ‘bury your gays’ trope. Also, she explains how the team behind BTVS has
learned from it.
have to wait, and the interview starts in a rather rushed way. Amber came in
five minutes early, and so I walked over her to talk to her after setting up. I
found out her boyfriend really likes stroopwafels and so I gave her one to give
it to him. I later heard she ate half of it too and loved it, ghehe.
2019 ClexaCon Friday:
pressroom interview with Wynonna Earp
interview with Wynonna Earp was rescheduled to a later moment. All of a sudden,
the room was PACKED. I mean, there hadn’t been that many people all day.
Because I had just interviewed Amber, I still had my front row seat. How very
lucky I was!
it to be crazy with questions since it was so crowded all of a sudden, but when
the interview started, I indicated I had a question and immediately was granted
permission to ask it! I said this on Instagram too, but it felt like a moment
of growth for me. Last year, I was in the back, observing more than joining.
This year, I opened the busiest interview of them all!
I asked Kat
about Pooched, and her response was so lovely. I don’t know what I was
expecting but not that she thanked me for asking about it.
2019 ClexaCon Friday: film festival
interview with Wynonna Earp, I had to run to the film festival part of the con.
Friday evening, there was a social event with the filmmakers. The filmmakers
were showing their films or the first episodes of their upcoming web series,
such as Passage and BIFL. Also, there was a sneak preview of Good Kisser.
As you may have seen, I reviewed Good Kisser a few weeks ago, and at ClexaCon, I was able to interview the cast. At the mixer, I introduced myself to the cast so that we already knew each other before the interview on Saturday. That makes things slightly more comfortable!
TWENTY The Web Series
TWENTY The Web Series was also present. Last year at ClexaCon, I saw Lily Richards a few times, but it was at the uncomfortable moments such as the restrooms, so I ended up not talking to her. That was my one big regret from ClexaCon 2018, so when I had the opportunity again, I made sure to tell her how much I loved the show.
I ended up talking to Lily and Caitlin for a while, and they agreed to do an interview with me. So, the next morning at 9 am, we were already working together. That was special! I can’t tell you precisely when you will see this interview, but I promise you within the next few weeks.
The event had a little red carpet event, so I have some BTS videos and photos for you in the video. The first one is actually Lily and Caitlin, and the red carpet still had to be sorted out😉
Emma, who wrote and directed the short film The Date, was also at ClexaCon. A few weeks before ClexaCon, she and her co-writer Hansof stayed at our house because The Date was showing at the Amsterdam LGBTQ film festival. So, I wanted to catch up with her on camera to find out what the screening was like. Because of the One Day At A Time panel, not a lot of visitors came to the film festival but the ones who did show up gave a great response to the movie. I loved hearing that others enjoy this short film as much as I did!
More ClexaCon 2019 Friday coming
Saturday, I had two exclusive interviews and a cool pressroom interview with
ODAAT, visited some fun panels, recorded at the red carpet event, and visited
the Ascension party. I will tell you all about it in my next blog posts!
meantime, you can read these ClexaCon blog posts (with videos!):
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