A duo that describes themselves as “not funny at all” and say if they wrote a comedy for YouTube it would die, is, in itself, a funny statement looking at the success of Chapman duo Almog Avidan Antonir (BFA/Film Prod.’13) and Tom Assam-Miller’s (BFA/Screen Acting’14) latest web series Long Story Short. Citing dry humor and exaggerated real life experiences as the source of their comedic success, the duo is gaining viewership and opening doors through the fast paced humor they are turning out.
Antonir and Assam-Miller took a strategic approach knowing they had to create something short or create something that felt short, and that’s exactly what they are doing through the quick cuts and constant narration driving their stories.
“It’s the intensity of the situation that makes it funny,” says Assam-Miller, who acts and contributes to writing, talking about the quick laughs found in episodes such as “I Had a Movie Date” and even their latest series called Wiener vs. Brain.
Antonir, the director and main writer, took inspiration from the Israeli TV show, Bekitzur which he quickly found out was based on a French TV show called Brief, and added, “We were shocked by how similar that and Long Story Short are after we watched it.” The accusations of copying it have definitely helped build followers for their channel titled Almost Cool and even inspired their “Short Story Long – We Made a Web Series” to explain why they made the series how it is.
The two also noted most of the cast and crew are Chapman students and alumni including Taylor Kenney (BFA/Screen Acting’14), Chase Cargill (Theater Performance, 2014), Heston Horwin (BFA/Screen Acting’14), and Ben Fischinger (BFA/Film Prod.’14).
“There’s so much bad content on YouTube and if you use it right, you can get a lot of viewers while also producing good work,” said Assam-Miller, who cites the series success as quality work for which they both are starting to get recognized. The two acknowledge from the start they knew what they were creating was different from most of the content found online, they still were shocked from the fast growth of the series that launched in late January. Posting the video to Reddit might have been their best move as Antonir remembers the moment when he set his phone down after averaging a new subscriber or two every hour, to 25 a minute, crashing his email overnight.
“After Reddit, we had a lot of people calling us and it was more than just the Chapman community that was excited about our work,” says Antonir.
Signing recently with Fullscreen, a YouTube network for content creators and brands, is just the start as the duo is constantly in talks of their next move and the doors that are being opened by the series.