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Producing Your Own Web Series

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Tired of waiting for your agent to book you work? Frustrated by the lack of callbacks? Hear from actors of successful Web series, a casting director of Web programming, and an agent who reps such new media talent. Moderated by Back Stage TV writer Sarah Kuhn.


Speakers include:

* Robin Lippin, Casting Director
* Sandeep Parikh, Writer, Director
* Kaily Smith, Actor, Writer


SPEAKER BIOS

Robin Lippin, Casting Director
Robin Lippin was born in New York. After working at a few talent agencies, she got her break working in casting for Aaron Spelling, who made her a casting director at a young age. She worked on various shows for him for seven years.

Robin later cast the various incarnations of "Saved by the Bell," which kept her working for 10 years along with TV pilots and MOWs. Other credits include "Lizzie McGuire," "State of Grace," "Ricochet," "Carol and Co.," "Happy Family" and "Attila," which was Gerard Butler's American TV debut. She recently worked on two pilots (both for the CW) that got picked up for series: "The Beautiful Life" and "Life Unexpected."

During the past year, for Electric Farm Entertainment she cast a Web series starring Rosario Dawson called "Gemini Division" "Woke Up Dead" with Jon Heder, Josh Gad, Krysten Ritter, Wayne Knight, and Jean Smart; and "Valemont" with Nikki Blonsky and Eric Balfour.


Sandeep Parikh, Writer, Director
Sandeep Parikh is a leader in the new-media content space. He wrote and directed Comedy Central and Atom.com's highest-rated and most-viewed Web series "The Legend of Neil," which has had television runs on Comedy Central and MTV2. It was rated in The Hollywood Reporter as one of the top 10 webisodes to watch.

Since launching the second season, "Neil" has garnered over 2 million hits online and was nominated for four Streamy Awards, including best director for Sandeep. Time.com notes that "Neil" gave "birth to a new star that has brightened the firmament of nerd culture."

Sandeep is also known for his acting work as the co-lead Zaboo in the acclaimed and multiple-award-winning Web series "The Guild," which won Streamys for best comedy Web series and best ensemble cast. Sandeep's successes have led Comedy Central to sign its largest overall Web deal, for the development of four more Web series.


Kaily Smith, Actor, Writer
Kaily Smith is the creator of MERRIme.com, writing and starring in the new Web comedy that explores the ins and outs of online dating. Hailed as one of the "best new series around" by TV Guide's "Hot List," MERRIme.com was honored with best comedy at the Los Angeles Independent Television Festival. Smith also won best actress at the New York Television Festival.

A graduate of the University of Southern California's BFA acting program, Kaily appeared in Judd Apatow's hit comedy "Forgetting Sarah Marshall" New Line Cinema's "Fracture," with David Strathairn; and on TV's "Gilmore Girls" as Lorelei's bubbly hotel employee, Christy.

She began her training at the Denver Center for Performing Arts and the prestigious Stagedoor Manor in upstate New York. By age 17 she had already appeared in over 20 productions, performed the National Anthem at Mile High Stadium, and recorded a demo with music producer David Foster.

In 2005, Kaily's love of storytelling bore life to her production company, Red Ladders Entertainment, when she made her professional directorial debut on Theatre Row in Hollywood. Since then, Red Ladders has continued to develop and produce theater, film, and television, including "Good Thing" at the Hudson Mainstage Theatre. Kaily currently resides in Los Angeles and continues to study acting with Diana Castle at the Imagined Life Studio.


Moderator:
Sarah Kuhn, Film & TV Writer, Back Stage

Sarah Kuhn is an entertainment and lifestyle journalist who has covered everything from comic book conventions to breast-feeding to swimming pools. Currently, she writes about film and television for Back Stage. Her work has also appeared in Geek Monthly, Creative Screenwriting, IGN.com, StarTrek.com, The Hollywood Reporter, and Consumers Digest.

Over the years, she's served as a moderator for SAG Foundation's Conversations series, a panelist at San Diego Comic-Con, and a judge for the Asian American International Film Festival's screenplay competition. Her first book, "One Con Glory," was released earlier this month by Alert Nerd Press.

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