Mon April 14, 2014
Going Door-to-Door For Laughs
So, you want to make it in showbiz. Your plan would more than likely look something like this: Move to Hollywood, work a string of odd jobs, and become familiar with rejection.
In this story, Krista Cassidy looks at how a Charlotte comedy duo are trying to make it big from their hometown.
Rachel Woodhouse and Justin Smith are always taking their show on the road. It’s called Door-to-Door. This week’s stop is an unassuming business park in South Charlotte that’s serving as a set.
Woodhouse and Smith are the creators and stars of Door-to-Door. It’s a mockumentary-style web series about life in door-to-door sales.
Smith knows this life. He used to sell a book series door-to-door called “Everything You Need to Know To Pass Grade School and High School.”
Woodhouse is a stand-up comedian who performs at several clubs in Charlotte. She and Smith met in an acting class. They have big dreams for this show.
“Right now, the episodes are 7 to 15 minutes because they’re made for the internet but they have plenty of content for a 22-minute episode for a TV show or Netflix or something along those lines,” Woodhouse says.
But you have to crawl before you walk, so they post episodes on their web site, called thebestseriesever.com.
This might sound like a fledgling operation – and to some extent it is. But, there are a lot of people who have shown faith in them through a 30-day Kickstarter campaign. If you’re unfamiliar with how Kickstarter works, you pitch your project through its web site and supporters donate money. But there is a catch – you only get to keep the money if you raise the amount you’re seeking. It’s all or nothing. Woodhouse and Smith posted their pilot episode, and raised $20,000.
“It’s awesome to have people who believe and support you that much. I think it was a great idea to do the pilot first so people could see it and want more,” Woodhouse says between shooting an episode about a fed-up co-worker who quits by Post-It note.
They plan to film 21 episodes for the show’s first season – and then each episode is posted on their web site as soon as it’s produced.
Some episodes are based on Justin’s experience as a door-to-door salesman. For example, there was the time when an ex-girlfriend answered the door.
“I feel like my strong suit is just taking all of it and organizing it. She comes up with all the great stuff,” Smith said. “She’s hilarious and she’s constantly coming up with brilliant ideas.”
One of those ideas concerns money. Product-placement is nothing new, but she wants to kick it up a notch and have their characters selling a real product.
“Right now we’ve got made-up companies that we’re representing, or selling for - there’s always the opportunity for companies to actually have us selling their stuff on the show,” Woodhouse says
And like any good sales team, they have goals.
First, gain a following on their own web site.
And then, who knows? Maybe they land a deal in which another web site or possible a network sponsors them.