EASTSIDERS

THE SERIES

 

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Comedic and gay-leaning web series EastSiders, which is exclusively distributed on Logo TV’s website, is tackling a controversial subject that few shows do: abortion. In the show’s sixth episode — which debuts this afternoon at 3 p.m. ET — Kathy (Constance Wu) grapples with the decision to abort a pregnancy that came out of a relationship with her good-guy boyfriend Ian (John Halbach). Kathy laments her situation to pal Cal (Kit Williamson) in a funny and heartbreaking scene that — what do you know? — EW has an exclusive first look at. “I don’t have a f—ing cold, Cal,” Kathy tells her pal, after he offers to make her some soup. “I am pregnant.”

Williamson — who plays Cal — is also the show’s writer-director, so in addition to the clip, which you can find below, he took out a few minutes to answer a few questions about why it was necessary to tackle the sometimes-touchy subject and much, much more.

 

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THE HUFFINGTON POST.  ”Logo TV online has acquired the rights to the web series “EastSiders,” a dark comedy about a struggling Los Angeles gay couple who is grappling with the aftermath of infidelity.

Huff Post Gay Voices blogger, playwright, actor and creator Kit Williamson blogged in January about the overwhelming success of the Kick Starter campaign back he launched to fund the series.

Now on April 23 the first three episodes of the series will premiere on LogoTV.com at 4 p.m. EST.

“It’s really amazing that the series has struck a chord with people,” said Williamson. “We passed our Kickstarter goal in just four days, and raised almost twice as much as we set out to. To be picked up for distribution by LogoTV.com is amazing.”

LogoTV.com is just as excited to have acquired the series.

“We’re thrilled to have this series coming to LogoTV.com,” Charles Runnette, Editorial Director of Logo Digital, said. “Kit’s sensibility fits perfectly with the direction Logo is forging online, and we all feel very confident that his “EastSiders” series will be a great success on our constellation of sites.”

The Advocate

 

THE ADVOCATE.  ”Eastsiders debuted two episodes in December to wide critical acclaim, proving the field is not yet oversaturated, and fans were jonesing for more. One major distinction between network television and a Web series is money. Eastsiders was done as a labor of love, with friends and fellow artists in Silver Lake helping out, and when finances dried up Williamson turned to another modern-day invention: Kickstarter.

Last week a Kickstarter campaign was started to fund an entire nine-episode season of Eastsiderswith a $15,000 goal. Within 48 hours the campaign raised $10,000, and now, just days later, it has passed the initial goal and is quickly racking up additional funding. “We are completely blown away that we passed our goal so quickly,” an astonished Williamson says. “Fifteen thousand dollars in four days — I still can’t believe it. It means so much to me that people are invested in the show and want to make it a reality.” Hopefully, with these new episodes we’ll find out if Cal and Tom’s relationship has a happy ending and if there is a silver lining in Silver Lake.”

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USA TODAY.  Featured as one of USA Today’s “TV on the Web” weekly picks in drama.

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FILM INDEPENDENT.  ”What happens after the world ends? In the new web series EastSiders, writer/director and award-winning playwright Kit Williamson explores the aftermath of infidelity on a gay couple in Silverlake. After self-financing the first three episodes in time for the Mayan apocalypse-that-wasn’t, Williamson and crew launched a Kickstarter campaign to secure funding for a full season. Thanks to media attention and #TeamEastSiders buzz, their fundraising campaign was a success — and they’ve still got one week to go before their Kickstarter ends. Naturally, they’ve increased their goal.

Williamson shares his strategy for EastSiders’ digital success with us. His advice? Have a plan for launch and post-production — don’t just throw it up on YouTube if you want to succeed.”

Frontiers

FRONTIERS MAGAZINE.  ”For gay audiences, the term “gay web series” can conjure up images of soft porn, a coming out story or two men walking through life hand in hand, showing that there is nothing wrong with loving a person of your own sex. Well, that all changes today with the release of the first webisode of Kit Williamson’s brilliant new series,EastSiders, which takes place in—you got it—Silver Lake!

EastSiders tells the story of a four-year relationship between Williamson’s Cal and As the World Turns favorite Van Hansis as Thom, where, from the very first frame, we learn something has gone amiss. You see, Thom had cheated on Cal, and as the first webisode plays out, the story gets more emotionally riveting as we are introduced to the man that Thom cheated with, and the fallout that is the driving force of this raw and realistic look at the not-so-pleasant side of gay love. But whether you are gay or straight, the themes in this story are universal, and the performances by Hansis (one of the finest actors out there) and Williamson (who will break your heart in this) will leave you beyond impressed!”

AfterElton press for EastSiders

AFTER ELTON.  ”Thom (Van Hansis) and Cal (Kit Williamson, who also wrote and directed) are trying to cope with infidelity in their four-year relationship, and in Episode One of Eastsiders, Thom vows to end it with the perpetually-shirtless Jeremy (Matthew McKelligon). But is it that easy?

Meanwhile, Cal drowns his sorrows with BFF Kathy (Constance Wu), who provides the right amount of sarcasm and shoulder to cry on, and has Thom pegged from the beginning.

Favorite line: “If I give up on this relationship, Chick fil A wins.”

Well, I’m hooked. It’s sharp, well-written and acted, and shows once again why web series are the place for thoughtful, funny stories to be told, without the constraints of network or corporate involvement.”

AfterElton press for EastSiders

 

AFTER ELTON:  ”Van Hansis will be returning to our homes in a big way with the December premiere of the new web series Eastsiders, where he’ll play one half of a gay couple in a rocky relationship. Are fireworks involved? Stay tuned, because we’ll definitely be covering this.”

AfterElton press for EastSiders and Van Hansis

AFTER ELTON:  ”Watch!  Van Hansis Snogs, Snipes and Smolders in the trailer for ‘EastSiders.’

It’s going to be great seeing Van without the constraints of a prudish network, and if the trailer is any indication, there’s at least one thing we can be sure of:

No Mistletoe.”

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THE DAILY DOT.  ”Yeah, but how can you possibly trust him again?” Kathy asks as she tries to deal with her heartbroken best friend, Cal.

“Maybe I can’t,” he responds in moment of calm distress. “Maybe that has to be OK.”

In the wake of an affair, the dark, new comedyEastsiders examines the tribulations of a gay couple’s relationship as the two struggle to redefine just what’s “OK.” Is it accepting his boyfriend’s apology and forgetting his infidelity? Or is it knowing when it’s time to cut your losses after years of personal investment?

The promising YouTube series is written, directed, and produced by Kit Williamson (Cal). Van Hansis plays Thom, his two-timing boyfriend who isn’t sure what he wants either. The show’s darker moments are balanced by Kathy (Constance Wu), a pill-popping, bubbly, and essential mood-elevator for Cal, while Matthew McKelligon stars as Jeremy, the third wheel responsible for the relationship’s turbulence.

 

NewNowNext press for EastSiders and Kit Williamson

NEW NOW NEXT:  ”The story of a gay couple picking up the pieces and trying to work things out after one lets his wandering eye get the best of him, the new web series EastSiders is already gaining a huge amount of buzz — and it has yet to even premiere.

We took some time to chat with writer, director and creator Kit Williamson about the new show, how he got started in the business and getting his first major break while still in college….

Judging from how successful EastSiders looks to be, he should have no trouble writing, acting and directing for a long, long time to come.”

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NEXT MAGAZINE.  ”Though there’s recently been a spate of web series depicting the live of young gay men figuring out love and relationships, the demographic is still pretty unrepresented when it comes to well-produced series. The acting on this series is top-notch, the production is great and if you watched the first two episodes, you’ll soon be wanting to know where Cal and Thom go next.”

Kenneth in the 212 Press for EastSiders

KENNETH IN THE 212:  I must say, even with an iPad and a 24-hour urge to be online, I’ve yet to take to a Web series. That could change, though, with the arrival of “EastSiders,” which examines the relationship of a couple in Silverlake after one of the men has an affair. Check out the trailer and tell me if you don’t agree that this one seems different:

Instinct Mag Press for EastSiders

A trailer for EastSiders, the Silverlake set web series following a gay couple dealing with the aftermath of infidelity, has just been released and we’re definitely intrigued.  It doesn’t hurt that it’s starring Van Hansis, one half of As The World Turns‘ (R.I.P.) groundbreaking gay couple, Luke and Noah!  Looks good, right?

 

Towleroad press for EastSiders

TOWLEROAD:  ”New Web Series ‘EastSiders’ Focuses on Gay Life in L.A.  The new web series ‘EastSiders’ explores the aftermath of infidelity on a gay couple living in Los Angeles neighborhood of Silver Lake.”

Queerty Press for EastSiders

QUEERTY:  ”‘As The World Turns’ Star Van Hansis Plays Gay Again in ‘EastSiders.’  In the new indie web series EastSiders, a gay couple tries to pick up the pieces after one of them has been unfaithful.  The show stars writer-director Kit Williamson and Van Hansis, an Emmy nominee for his role as a young gay man on As The World Turns.”

queermeup press for EastSiders the Series

 

QUEER ME UP:  ”Gay web series ‘EastSiders’ announces cast — Indie dark comedy attracts established TV stars.”

Windy City Times Interview with Kit Williamson and Van Hansis

WINDY CITY TIMES:  ”On Dec. 14, actor/writer/director Kit Williamson, a young veteran of Broadway, will premiere the first episode of his new, gay Web series Eastsiders. The auteur describes his baby as a dark comedy about the aftermath of infidelity.

“Cal has recently discovered that Thom, his boyfriend of four years, has been cheating on him for months,” Williamson said, in an interview with Windy City Times.

“Things explode between them, and their relationship is turned upside down. My entire life, I always assumed that infidelity was a deal breaker, but I also believe that there is such a thing as unconditional love. I wanted to explore this tension because I think it’s really rich and complex. Ultimately, this is a character driven story. I wanted to create complicated, flawed gay characters because I think far too often gay characters are depicted as archetypes, if they’re depicted at all.”

We Love Soaps press for EastSiders

WE LOVE SOAPS:  ”AS THE WORLD TURNS alum Van Hansis is shooting a new web series this week, written and directed by Kit Williamson, who also stars.  EASTSIDERS is “a dark comedy web series about a gay couple in Silverlake. Tonally, think GIRLS with a bunch of gay guys. Cal and Thom’s relationship is falling apart but they just might be stubborn enough to stay together forever.”  Along with Hansis and Williamson, John Halbach, Matthew McKelligon and Constance Wu are also in the cast. Chrissy Dodson and Kristyne Fetsic are producers.

 

We Love Soaps interview with Kit Williamson

WE LOVE SOAPS:  ”Kit Williamson has appeared in television, film, and new media, as well as on stage (Broadway’s “Talk Radio.”) He’s currently in graduate school, as a playwright, at UCLA. For his latest project, the upcoming indie web series EASTSIDERS, he exercised his talents as an actor and writer, and he also directed – for the first time.

Luckily, Williamson has surrounded himself with an excellent cast, including AS THE WORLD TURNS alum Van Hansis. In the series, Williamson plays Cal, who finds out his boyfriend Thom (Hansis) has been cheating on him, which turns their relationship upside down.

We Love Soaps caught up with Williamson this week to find out more about his career and how EASTSIDERS, which premieres December 14, came to be.”

EastSiders Press in Curbed LA

CURBED LA: “New Silver Lake show…. The new web series EastSiders, premiering December 14, is set guess where: on the fake east side of LA, aka Silver Lake. It’s about a gay couple trying to keep it together post-cheating revelation, and stars As the World Turns actor Van Hansis, Broadway playwright/actor Kit Williamson (who also created it), and Happy Endings star Stephen Guarino. We’re hoping for a lot of Akbar-related drama.

 

 

Echo Park Silver Lake Patch interview with Kit Williamson

ECHO PARK SILVER LAKE PATCH:  ”A Sunset Junction Triangle.  If the loud noise heard over the reality series “K-Town” is the sound of doors opening up for a national appetite for neighborhood LA tales, then coming right through is Kit Williamson’s “Eastsiders”, a fictional drama starring himself as Cal and revolves around the fragile relationship with his boyfriend Thom, played byAs The World Turns’ Van Hansis.

Developed rather quickly over the course of a year, Williamson handles the trifecta of writing, directing and starring in the lead role, all while chasing down his grad school credits at UCLA.

We asked Williamson some local-centric spots where he likes to work, where he likes to eat, and where he likes to shop around here….”

soapcentral.com press for EastSiders

 

SOAP CENTRAL: Emmy-nominated Van Hansis played the good guy on CBS’s As the World Turns. In the new web series, Eastsiders, he’ll get to play another piece of the acting spectrum. Hansis appeared on ATWT from 2005 through 2010.  For a new web series called Eastsiders, Van Hansis (Luke Snyder) plays the cheating half of a couple in a dark comedy about the sad but funny messes people make of life.

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Michael Fairman press for EastSiders

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MICHAEL FAIRMAN:  ”We are really excited about this one, soapers!  So many fans worldwide have been clamoring to see Van Hansis (Ex-Luke, As the World Turns) on their computer or television screens in a continuing role, and now it looks their dreams have come true!  Van, along with Kit Williamson will star in the new web series EastSiders premiering on December 14th.”