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DID YOU READ

Catching up with 2012 Subway Fresh Artists finalist Libby Klein from “The Loop”

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If the world is going to end in 2012, then Libby Klein suggested that it might happen at the end of a Subway sandwich: in “The Loop,” her entry in Subway’s Fresh Artists™ Filmmaker Series competition, two young men discover an unexpected – and hilarious – nexus in time and space when they accidentally create duplicates of themselves while devouring breakfast at their local sub shop.

Klein, the project’s producer, helped her fellow collaborators put together “The Loop” for the competition, which enlisted aspiring filmmakers to create a web series that incorporates their sponsor. IFC recently spoke with Klein about where the idea for “The Loop” originally came from, and about the challenges she endured and lessons she learned in the process of participating in the competition.

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Watch the rest of “Frat House Musical” and learn more about the SUBWAY Fresh Artists™ Filmmaker Series by clicking here.


IFC: Just to get started, talk about how you first became aware of the contest and then how you and your collaborators came up with an idea that you thought would be appropriate or suitable for it.

KLEIN:NYU Stern has a student-run group called Promotion Pictures. And every year Promotion coordinates a collaboration between the business school where I attend, the film school, and this year also the Interactive Media School. So in past years they’ve [involved] a new sponsor for a new contest similar to what we did with Subway this year; although, with Subway it was a much bigger contest. So I heard about it through Promotion Pictures ‘cause they are the ones that really like go out and reach out to the students and kind of work — and did all the organization. And so that’s how I heard about it.

IFC: How did you and your collaborators come up with an idea that you thought would be well suited to the competition?

KLEIN:As the producer I wasn’t that involved in the idea creation. My team originally came up with a script that had to do with he end of the Mayan calendar and I looked at that script and had many comments and was like, I don’t think this is really going to work with what our sponsor wants and I don’t think it works with the medium. And instead of kind of reworking that concept they came back to me with the current script and I was like, “Great, I love this. Let’s do it.” And but it just, the concept in general it was like fresh, it was young, it seemed like it would — it matched like the target audience that Subway is trying to reach. And we just thought it would be like fun and exciting to shoot. We also thought it would be, it was like right on the edge of what we thought kind of technically we should do with the budget that we had and we wanted to push the budget as far as we could.

IFC: What were the specific challenges that you had to undertake for this because of maybe working at a scale that was different than what you had done in the past.

KLEIN:Well, before this I was a reality television producer and I also produced and directed media for political groups, so there were many challenges. I’ve never been in charge of such a large budget and so much hiring, so like balancing the creative demands and our budget was really a challenge, but a great opportunity.

IFC: How much did you have to think about Subway in the process of incorporating them in to the existing story that you guys had?

KLEIN:Our story wouldn’t have existed without Subway. It wasn’t like we had a story and then tried to adapt it to Subway. Like it evolved together with the concept of Subway, so from the beginning we wanted to have Subway in each of the episodes. We tried to have Subway in the episodes with a little bit of humor around it, and then our characters start in Subway in the first episode. In the second episode, there’s more just allusions to it and in the third episode they go back to it.

IFC: Was this dramatically different than other stuff that you had done in the past, or given the sort of experiences you previously had, it was actually not that much different?

KLEIN:It was different in that my role was different. As a reality TV producer, I wasn’t on the budgetary side. I was on the more creative and daily logistical side. So although the budget was definitely was smaller for this than it is for a reality show, this is the first time I’ve been in charge of it.

IFC: How indicative do you feel like this particular project is in terms of what you want to maybe do going forward?

KLEIN:This is exactly what I want to do going forward. I’d like to do both episodic and single production, whether it’s movies or one-hour television shows, but this is a great opportunity to try the things that I had not done before. And in addition to the web series we also produced a mobile app for Android that’s coming out. So for me it was also an amusing experience to have more projects with super deliverables, and really working in expanding the story world that we created in the episodes to a separate app — and trying to figure out how you do that. And how you manage the production and how you manage resources I think will be part of my career going forward, and it was another great opportunity.

IFC: What are you working on now?

KLEIN:Right this moment I’m looking to get a job for the summer producing or working in production or development.

IFC: Ultimately what do you feel like you took away from this experience that you feel like you’ll take with you to new jobs, or that could be applicable to your future career?

KLEIN:Well kind of like I said this is pretty much exactly what I’d like to be doing in the future, producing narrative content. So going forward I’ve been looking for new things and I’m glad [the series] is in my pocket, to say, “Here’s an example of something that I produced and here’s what I can do and how I did it and I think I’m ready for a bigger budget.”

IFC: What through this process do you feel like maybe was the sort of most important lesson that you learned?

KLEIN:I guess it’s harder to manage a team than I expected. It’s important that you communicate with everyone and express expectations as early as possible, or then that’s usually what happens. But also I guess that it’s okay to have a little conflict and resolve it.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.



Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…

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Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.

via GIPHY

Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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WTF Films

Artfully Off

Celebrity All-Star by Sisters Weekend is available now on IFC's Comedy Crib.

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Sisters Weekend isn’t like other comedy groups. It’s filmmaking collaboration between besties Angelo Balassone, Michael Fails and Kat Tadesco, self-described lace-front addicts with great legs who write, direct, design and produce video sketches and cinematic shorts that are so surreally hilarious that they defy categorization. One such short film, Celebrity All-Star, is the newest addition to IFC’s Comedy Crib. Here’s what they had to say about it in a very personal email interview…

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IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Celebrity All-Star is a short film about an overworked reality TV coordinator struggling to save her one night off after the cast of C-List celebrities she wrangles gets locked out of their hotel rooms.

IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Sisters Weekend: It’s this short we made for IFC where a talent coordinator named Karen babysits a bunch of weird c-list celebs who are stuck in a hotel bar. It’s everyone you hate from reality TV under one roof – and that roof leaks because it’s a 2-star hotel. There’s a magician, sexy cowboys, and a guy wearing a belt that sucks up his farts.

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IFC: What was the genesis of Celebrity All-Star?

Celebrity All-Star was born from our love of embarrassing celebrities. We love a good c-lister in need of a paycheck! We were really interested in the canned politeness people give off when forced to mingle with strangers. The backstory we created is that the cast of this reality show called “Celebrity All-Star” is in the middle of a mandatory round of “get to know each other” drinks in the hotel bar when the room keys stop working. Shows like Celebrity Ghost Hunters and of course The Surreal Life were of inspo, but we thought it
was funny to keep it really vague what kind of show they’re on, and just focus on everyone’s diva antics after the cameras stop rolling.

IFC: Every celebrity in Celebrity All-Star seems familiar. What real-life pop personalities did you look to for inspiration?

Sisters Weekend: Anyone who is trying to plug their branded merch that no one asked for. We love low-rent celebrity. We did, however, directly reference Kylie Jenner’s turd-raison lip color for our fictional teen celebutante Gibby Kyle (played by Mary Houlihan).

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IFC: Celebrity seems disgusting yet desirable. What’s your POV? Do you crave it, hate it, or both?

Sisters Weekend: A lot of people chase fame. If you’re practical, you’ll likely switch to chasing success and if you’re smart, you’ll hopefully switch to chasing happiness. But also, “We need money. We need hits. Hits bring money, money bring power, power bring fame, fame change the game,” Young Thug.

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IFC: Who are your comedy idols?

Sisters Weekend: Mike grew up renting “Monty Python” tapes from the library and staying up late to watch 2000’s SNL, Kat was super into Andy Kaufman and “Kids In The Hall” in high school, and Angelo was heavily influenced by “Strangers With Candy” and Anna Faris in the Scary Movie franchise, so, our comedy heroes mesh from all over. But, also we idolize a lot of the people we work with in NY-  Lorelei Ramirez, Erin Markey, Mary Houlihan, who are all in the film, Amy Zimmer, Ana Fabrega, Patti Harrison, Sam Taggart. Geniuses! All of Em!

IFC: What’s your favorite moment from the film?

Sisters Weekend: I mean…seeing Mary Houlihan scream at an insane Pomeranian on an iPad is pretty great.

See Sisters Weekend right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib

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