'LA Sucks' Is Ab Fab For The Undead
A Bloody Good Interview With Series Creator Andrea Morris
04/10/2009 02:57:23 PM PDT
LA Sucks: Kinka waking
Click photo to enlarge
LA Sucks: Joan bitting
Move over Edward Cullen.
current vampire-chic zeitgeist, Andrea Morris, a successful,
Canadian-born actress living in Los Angeles, has conceived LA Sucks, a new, improv webseries featuring the culturally pervasive, sunlight deficient, blood lovers.
A clever spoof of Los Angeles, vampires and religious freaks, LA Sucks was developed before the unleashing of Twilight and Tru Blood into the mainstream. Morris confesses, "at the time, it was really original.
I thought of Absolutely Fabulous -- what if they were vampires? They are all so
self-serious. Everybody's too cool for school. I don't find that sexy
or endearing at all. It begs for some loser vampires to get together. I
mean, some vampires have to be losers and that is our circle."
After working steadily (as Margaret
on the last season of 7th Heaven, as well as roles on Carnivale and
in feature films including Margaret's Museum alongside Helena Bonham
Carter), Morris became frustrated by the lack of work. "Everything had
slowed down," says Morris over the phone. "Everything was changing and
I was frustrated. I had some money from 7th Heaven, so I wrote a seven
page outline, bought some equipment, and everyone [co-stars Sarah Lassez and Lon Haber ] was out of work and struggling and not feeling creatively fulfilled, so we just started shooting."
Morris, who directed and produced the pilot, plays "Kinka," the young and exuberant, religious, yoga-obsessed vampire who works as a nanny. Lon Haber (Entourage, Law and Order) plays "Xavier" a sexually ambiguous vampire from an unspecified European country who earns money as a valet at the Beverly Hills Hotel. Sarah Lassez plays "Joan," the old, jaded and depressed vampire who makes her living as a phone psychic. Together, the three prey upon "evil people and douchebags," the bulk of which are pedophiles and rapists.
Shot in a mere five days, Morris beamed proudly, "it's the most amount of work I've ever put into anything -- including college!" She followed, "anything you produce is a huge amount of work, even if you think you are just playing and doing it for fun. I liked to think of us as Ninjas because because we'd roll in with a camera-on-a-stick...and we'd be gone before we could get kicked out." Like the vampire characters she created, she says, "We'd shoot 'til we were hungry, have pizza, be full and tired, and then we'd go home."
In addition to the grind of filming and editing, bringing her bloody baby to the Hollywood bigwigs also proved to be a challenge. "It doesn't seem to matter that you create something that has an audience. There are people who want to control things and buy it to shelve it so that no one can see it, so that they can keep control. And, they don't talk to you like normal people. They give you the most cliched bullshit that sounds like it's out of a Christopher Guest or a Judd Apatow comedy. It's absurd."
Morris was insulted by industry dealings that yielded such offers as, "they're going to re-create the whole thing to be a CW show and [I'll] be hired on as a consultant for 100 dollars a week." Refusing to have the
blood sucked out of her project by Hollywood vampires, she put the pilot online where it developed a
fast following. "Everything went digital overnight," she added, and with outlines for six more episodes and a Season Two in the works, the series continues to gain widespread exposure.
Ever spoofing the entertainment industry, Morris is also working on an in-development feature called, "The Untitled Super Mysterious Project." Satire, it seems, is something this woman can really sink her teeth into.