Running With Violet Interview: Rebecca Davey and Marie-Claire Marcotte
“We often joke about the fact that sometimes it doesn’t matter if you have talent or not, it’s just whether or not you keep standing there making films, making art.”
I know there’s a lot of content out there and your time is super precious, yadda yadda yadda, but please, trust me when I say the ONLY thing you need to be watching this summer is Rebecca Davey and Marie-Claire Marcotte’s web series Running With Violet, which returns for a second season on July 15.
Haven’t watched season one yet? First, how dare you. And second, that’s not a problem because you can binge watch the entire thing right here right now. It’s got everything you could ever want in a series: drama, suspense, best friends forever, and even*Olivia Colman from Hot Fuzz voice* muuuurrrddderrrrr. Miranda and Jolene are besties and just want to away on a girl’s weekend but end up tangled up with a meth gang.
The second season is just as captivating and intense as the first, but the stakes are even higher and this time there’s beauty products! (But don’t worry, the beauty products are a front for drugs because regular old beauty products would be boring.)
Davey and Marcotte, who wrote, produced, and star in the series, have an incredible ability to effortlessly weave comedy and suspense together. And of course it helps having an incredible cast of co-stars like Jessii Vee, Andrea Bang, and Amy Matysio. We had a chance to chat with Davey and Marcotte about this most excellent second season, which you can read below.
Tonight is the red carpet premiere screening of season 2 but if you aren’t able to make it to that, it’s okay because there are only four more sleeps until season 2 airs on Youtube!
We last chatted in 2015. Here’s a link! Can you catch us up since then?
When we spoke in 2015, we were working on our first short film that went on to screen at the Cannes Film Festival as part of Telefilm’s Not Short On Talent program. We were really just forming our company She Said Films at that point. Now as a company we have produced two seasons of Running With Violet, raising the money, writing all of the episodes and starring in the series. A big undertaking. We have also developed She Said Notes, our feminist online publication that we are in the process of turning into a podcast — so we wear a lot of hats and keep really busy, but we are determined to forge our own paths and you have to wear a lot of hats if you’re going to do that!
Tell us about Running With Violet. Where did the idea come from?
We got a nugget of an idea when it was suggested to us that a remake of Thelma and Louise hadn’t been done in a while. That got our brains turning. We saw some parallels in our friendship (two women with a tight friendship but with different lives) and also what made our lives different than Thelma and Louise: one of which was my toddler Violet. So we started to write and ended up with these two small town women who take themselves on a girls’ weekend…with diapers.
Did you always know the direction you wanted to take S2 or did it come together after S1 ended?
We toyed around with lots of possibilities for season 2. We knew we wanted it to be another “heist” so each season focuses around a different criminal activity. Season 2 also had to flow out of our season 1 ending in Florida.
Do you have a favourite character?
Our favourite character is probably “Xorge.” She is completely unhinged, which made her really fun to write.
What has been the best part about telling this story in the web series format?
The web series format is exciting because it provides the opportunity to come up with a complete story arc, get it funded and take it to production. It’s exciting to make something from start to finish and be able to control the vision along the way.
Can you tell us about some/all of the other amazing women who worked on this web series?
Lots of amazing women worked on the series. Joyce Wong, our director, has such a unique point of view and really understood the tone of Season 2. Look out for her directing on the next season of Working Moms. Amy Matysio who plays “Xorge” is a very dynamic actor and human! We were lucky to get her. Andrea Bang who plays “Samantha” is another wonderful soul. It was very exciting to see her play such a different character from her normal “Janet Lee” on Kim’s Convenience. “Samantha” is pretty flawed to say the least.
When we asked you last time to tell us about why you are a feminist and why it’s important to your filmmaking you said:
Rebecca Davey: I think it’s so important to write roles for women and create opportunities for women. It’s essential. Our stories are different and we can’t just have male stories on the screen. We care about different things, we just do. I mean, we care about a lot of the same things too, but our brains and emotions are different. I have two daughters. I need to make work that has the potential to inspire them, that opens up their world view where they can see themselves doing crazy, grandiose things — big things! Brave things! I could go on and on about this one… Marie-Claire Marcotte: People in general inspire me. Every single person has a story. It’s just that we’ve heard more stories about men and it’s not because they’re more interesting.
Does this still resonate with you, a few years later?
Yes, both comments still resonate with us. Since then, we’ve seen more stories featuring women as full, complex human beings, which is exciting and inspiring; we want and need more of those stories!
Last time we asked you about the best advice you ever received. Now it’s time to give your own advice. Go!
Keep going. We often joke about the fact that sometimes it doesn’t matter if you have talent or not, it’s just whether or not you keep standing there making films, making art. This industry is so hard and if somehow you can manage to sidestep the bullshit that inevitably falls in your path and maintain the courage to keep working in the way you want to work, then you’re winning!
The question we are sure is on everyone’s minds: will there be a third season!??!
We hope so! We’re working towards subsequent seasons and we have lots of ideas mapped out. A season 3 is definitely possible. IF viewers want it! We need the fans behind Running With Violet to speak up if they want a season 3. We need them to watch and like and share like mad. Basically, we need to show our funders that people out there also want another season — not just us.
What mythical creature do you wish actually existed?
Fairies. There would be a few per person, kind of like life guides.
If someone narrated your life, who would you want to be the narrator?
Phoebe Waller-Bridge for the recent hit Fleabag. Isn’t she every woman’s hero these days? It seems that she could add a few jokes and make life seem more absurd, hilarious and “doable.”
Finally, recommend one #MUFFApproved** film for our blog readers!
We recently watched Legally Blonde and yes, it’s dated, but remains a classic.