Somewhere right now Dave “Oderus Urungus” Brockie is cheering from a cloud up in monster heaven because the horror sitcom “Holliston” is getting a third season!
From the Press Release:
After a two-year hiatus following the tragic death of cast member Dave Brockie, the popular sitcom “Holliston” will return for a third season in 2016 on the GeekNation digital network, it was announced today by ArieScope Pictures President and series creator/showrunner Adam Green in conjunction with GeekNation’s CEO Clare Kramer and COO Brian Keathley.
The highly anticipated third season is set for a full 10-episode order to premiere on GeekNation’s digital streaming network next summer, making this the first time that “Holliston” will be readily accessible for all, including audiences in many foreign countries that were unable to watch the series until now.
Created by Adam Green (Hatchet, Frozen), “Holliston” stars Green and fellow real-life genre filmmaker Joe Lynch (Everly, Knights of Badassdom) as “Adam” and “Joe,” two aspiring horror filmmakers, dealing with the struggles of life, love, and career aspirations during the post-college period where nothing ever seems to work out like it should. With storylines inspired by Green’s own life experiences that mash-up situational comedy plot lines with popular horror genre themes, “Holliston” is an edgy, genre-fueled, and heartfelt sitcom that horror and comedy fans have passionately embraced since its television debut in 2012.
The series also stars Laura Ortiz (The Hills Have Eyes) as “Laura,” Joe’s longtime girlfriend and adorably demented artist; Corri English (Unrest) as “Corri,” Adam’s emotionally confused and on-again/off-again childhood sweetheart; and heavy metal icon Dee Snider (Twisted Sister) as “Lance Rockett,” a delusional wannabe rock star who ran the local cable station where Adam and Joe worked up until the cliffhanger finale of Season 2 when each of the characters’ lives were turned upside down. All five actors will be returning for Season 3.
Just as the third season was being developed, tragedy struck “Holliston” on March 23, 2014, when the show suffered the sudden death of cast member Dave Brockie (who played “Oderus Urungus,” Adam’s imaginary closet-dwelling guardian angel on “Holliston” and who also fronted the iconic heavy metal band GWAR for 30 years). Only three weeks after Brockie’s tragic passing, the series’ cable television network distributor FEARnet was dissolved. “In most cases, the trials and tribulations we have endured as a cast would mean the end of a series,” says Green, “but this is ‘Holliston,’ and we are much more than just a sitcom. We are a bona fide family. By leaning on each other and embracing the overwhelming love and support of our fans (known as the ‘Holliston Nation’), we never became disenchanted by our unfortunate circumstances or allowed our collective inspirational fire to go out.”
The series was developed, produced, and is owned by Green’s ArieScope Pictures (the Hatchet franchise, Digging Up the Marrow), who licensed the broadcast rights for the first two seasons to the FEARnet network, therefore making it possible for “Holliston” to continue on with a new distributor in FEARnet’s wake. “’Holliston’ never would have had a chance to exist if it were not for FEARnet,” says Green. “It was such a shame to see the network’s life cut short while they were still just getting started.”
Though there have been several potential opportunities presented to Green and company to continue “Holliston” over the past two years, the cast remained unified and waited until the circumstances and the timing were right. “It’s crucial to note that Dave was so much more than just a cast member of ‘Holliston’,” says series star and executive producer Joe Lynch. “He was a dear friend to all of us, and his absence will be deeply felt by everyone in our cast and crew. For Adam especially, he not only writes every single episode, but he was also the only actor on the show who shared scenes with Oderus, so continuing the series without Dave is an extremely difficult task for him emotionally. It has been a very delicate and slow process to get ourselves back to this point, but rushing ahead any sooner would have been a disservice to the fans and to the show itself. Thankfully we have an incredibly patient and understanding fan base that has supported us unconditionally and that has mourned with us through all of this. Our fans appreciate that we’re real people who have to heal from our loss and that we’re not just fictional characters on their screens, despite the fact that we all play versions of ourselves in a way.”
“As cliché as it might sound, no one would want to see ‘Holliston’ continue more than Dave,” adds Green. “On the Season 2 behind-the-scenes Blu-ray ‘making of feature,’ Dave says directly to the camera that ‘”Holliston” is the greatest thing that’s ever happened to me.’ It’s been a long, heartbreaking road, but we’re at a point now where we’re back on our feet and we’re ready to laugh once again. Last week the main cast got together to table read some of the new material for the first time, and we could all feel without a doubt that no one was laughing louder or harder than Dave.”
As Season 2 of “Holliston” began airing in 2013, Green and Lynch began doing a weekly podcast on GeekNation called “The Movie Crypt,” an audio program spin-off named after the fictional cable access show that their characters host on “Holliston” that was initially intended to merely run as extra promotion for the 10 weeks that the second season would be airing. Two years later, “The Movie Crypt” has become one of the most popular filmmaking podcasts on the internet. Guests who have shared their extremely candid career stories on the podcast have included Chris Columbus, Jordan Peele, Slash, Joe Dante, James Gunn, David Wain, Greg Nicotero, Henry Rollins, Bobcat Goldthwait, and countless other notable artists from all aspects of the entertainment industry. Last Christmas the main cast of “Holliston” (Green, Lynch, Ortiz, and English) surprised “The Movie Crypt” listeners with the performance of a new episode of “Holliston” in the form of a radio play, which attracted over 450,000 listeners in its first week alone. In January, Entertainment Weekly listed “The Movie Crypt” in the magazine’s “20 Podcasts You Should Be Listening To,” and the weekly audio program now averages roughly 600,000 listeners. “It’s almost embarrassing to admit, but there we were on a quest to find a new outlet for ‘Holliston’ where we could continue to creatively make the show our way but also have it be distributed on a platform where absolutely anyone who wants to watch it can easily find and enjoy it… and the answer was literally right in front of our noses the entire time,” says Green.
“Bringing ‘Holliston’ to GeekNation almost kind of makes it a spin-on,” says Lynch. “The sitcom led to the podcast spin-off, which in turn has now led us back to the sitcom again. I’m coining the term ‘spin-on,’ by the way.”
“When I first spoke with Adam and Joe about producing ‘The Movie Crypt’ podcast together, it was intended to be temporary, just to help promote ‘Holliston’,” says GeekNation’s COO Brian Keathley. “I don’t think any of us expected the podcast to take off like it has with fans and industry professionals alike. Now, with Season 3 of ‘Holliston’ coming to GeekNation, it just completes the picture.”
CEO Clare Kramer adds, “With ‘Holliston’ Adam’s creation embodies the definition of intellectual humor combined with pop-culture creativity, creating what we believe is a cult phenomenon. We’re excited to partner on the third season, which will bring network-quality serialized programming to GeekNation for the first time, with ‘Holliston’ as our initial offering in this division. This initiative of long-form content will round out well against our current short-form web series and podcast content, and we look forward to our millions of users re-watching or discovering ‘Holliston’ for the first time.”
“My hope with ‘Holliston’ was always that it would fill a void in situational comedies by speaking directly to those of us who identify as being geeks and horror fans but who can’t typically find these kinds of types of themes, characters, or comedic sensibilities in the average network sitcom,” says Green. “I believe that ‘Holliston’s’ consistently growing fan base appreciates it because they can tell that the series is being made by people who really live it and who aren’t just pandering to a demographic that’s currently proving to be lucrative in the mainstream. Just because a character on a show makes a dozen comic book references, lives for Star Wars, collects action figures, wears an obscure Evil Dead shirt, goes to Comic-Con, or symbolizes any of the other various stereotypes associated with ‘geeks’ doesn’t mean that people like us are going to watch and relate to it. Fans of the series have responded to the show’s genuine heart even more than the various horror icon celebrity guest stars or the genre themes and references.”
Lynch adds, “When we were doing cast appearances and live performances on the convention circuit in support of the first two seasons, it was so rewarding to see firsthand how ‘Holliston’ also draws a large fan base of mainstream comedy fans. We’ve had people of all ages and even full families come through the lines to meet us and tell us that they have never been to a convention before in their lives or that they weren’t necessarily into horror genre stuff before getting into ‘Holliston.’ So whether we’ve won over genre fans who would typically never have watched a sitcom or whether we’ve served as a gateway drug into horror and sci-fi for people that never gave the genres a chance before… people from all walks of life are feeling welcome and accepted with ‘Holliston,’ and that’s an incredible feeling.”
“As a culture we might be into monsters, gore, science fiction, superheroes, video games, heavy metal, or whatever…. but we’re also real people with ambitious dreams who face struggle, disappointment, and loads of heartbreak,” says Green. “We all need friends that love and believe in us unconditionally and I think that ‘Adam,’ ‘Joe,’ ‘Laura,’ and ‘Corri’ not only represent that but are that for a lot of ‘Holliston’ fans who perhaps don’t have a solid support system in their own lives. It took me 13 years and more ‘almosts’ than I can count to get that first season of ‘Holliston’ made with the exact people I wanted to make it with. For a show that tells its audience to have hope and to ‘never give up,’ who would I be to throw in the towel because of the unfortunate circumstances we’ve faced as a show these last two years? There’s no guarantees in this business and I know I won’t always win, but I’ll keep getting back up, I’ll keep trying, and I’ll keep swinging while I have this family standing with me. Cast, crew, and fans alike. You know what they say… 15th year is a charm.”
Green is currently writing Season 3 as he and the rest of the “Holliston” cast work on various other feature film, television, stage, and tour commitments. Pre-production and the extensive rehearsal process for Season 3 will commence early next year with a summer 2016 premiere on GeekNation. Cory Neal (Frozen), Sarah Elbert (Hatchet), Will Barratt (Hatchet), and Peter Block (Saw) will continue to be producers on the series. Directorial duties will remain in the hands of series directors Green and Sean Becker (The Guild).