This interview we connected with Mykell the creator of the dramedy web series “202 the series”.
About the creator: Mykell is an actor and writer from Atlanta, GA. He spent his teenage and college years as a singer/songwriter and was given the opportunity to perform on stages from Los Angeles to Bangkok Thailand. He released an acoustic EP which included his first single “New Stage”. This song and the music video got Mykell a starring role alongside Mike “The Situation” in a web series called New Stage (titled after his single of the same name). The track was also the theme song for the series. After this experience Mykell released a full length album,completely reinvented himself, and then moved to Los Angeles California to put all his effort into making his dreams a reality. He finished 6th in the reality show called “Take The Stage” where the contestants are mentored by super music manager Johnny Wright (manager of Justin Timberlake, Jonas, Ciara, Akon, Janet Jackson) and Grammy winning songwriter/producer Rodney “Dark Child” Jerkins. Over the last few years Mykell began taking workshops, writing classes, and experiencing various opportunities to write and perform. He has written short films, web series, TV pilots, and he is currently developing a feature film. He recently created a web series called “202” with each episode written entirely by him. “202 the series” is the first official production for Mykell’s production company “A Great Adventure Productions” which he started with long time friend and director Justin Patten.
For anyone who hasn’t seen the dramatic-comedy “202 the series” could you tell us more about it?
The series follows 3 roommates who are struggling to make their dream careers come true all while struggling to pay their bills. It is very relatable and true to form for any body who has ever dared to go after their dreams.
What inspired you to create the web series?
I started writing 202 during a particularly frustrating time in my career last year. I wasn’t booking anything I auditioned for and I had no idea where my career was going. I realized that if I wanted to be seen as an actor or as a writer I had to make my own opportunities. 202 is meant to remind me and whoever watches it that we should never give up on our dreams. Push through the hard times because something great is on the other end.
How did you get started creating web series?
I had written a few short films and series pilots with lofty production budgets. I wanted to write something that would be easy to pull off financially. Web series allows me to write stories and bring them to life with minimal budget. Web series have also been a great calling card because people are able to see what you are capable of as a creator.
What was the biggest struggle you had creating the series and how did you overcome it?
We shot the entire series on about $200 out of pocket so you can imagine the struggles that brings. We didn’t always have a large crew working our sound and lighting. We figured it out and did it ourselves. Our cast is amazing and we all worked together to make this series happen.
Also with everyone being so busy with other projects and life in general, scheduling was a nightmare sometimes. There were times when I was convinced we were never going to finish this season. Everyone’s schedules just weren’t lining up. But we did it.
Dwight seems like a clear fan favorite he is like the Greek chorus in the series. How did you decide to create his character?
The character of Dwight came about in the early drafts of the series pilot. I wanted to have a character who cares deeply for his friends but isn’t afraid to speak his mind. Dwight is often the voice of wisdom with his friends. More than anything I wanted develop a character that, even with his wisdom and confidence, still struggles with self-doubt and loneliness. Dwight is a strong character which makes his moments of vulnerability all the more poignant. I love his story and the actor who plays him, Lyonel Reneau, is amazingly truthful is his performance.
The series deals with some serious subjects like drug abuse. What is the biggest message you want people to take from the series?
Never give up. Even when things are darkest find the small pieces of light in your life and hold onto them. Find people who believe in you as much as you believe in yourself and aren’t afraid to push you to greatness.
What advice would you give to aspiring filmmakers?
The biggest piece of advice I can give is create. If you want to be a writer then write. If you want to be seen as a filmmaker you have to be making films. Even if it’s just making short films with your friends in the backyard, do it. There is something amazing that happens when you just start saying yes to your passions.
What new projects are you working on?
I started a production company with, Justin Patten the director of 202, called “A Great Adventure Productions.” We are producing two comedy series pilots this summer, one we co-wrote together. We will also be producing another web series I created called “Skids” this summer so be on the look out for that. The series “202” will return in the fall. We will be busy but I am enjoying every minute of it.
Watch Mykell’s series “202 the series” on ColoredContent.