Exclusive Interview: Alex Hodges, creator of The Weekend Warriors

Los Angeles web-based reality show The Weekend Warriors has been on the internet radar for over 6 months now. The show is finally reaching the goal of 1,000 likes on Facebook to release their first full episode and kick off the series. I had the pleasure of interviewing Alex Hodges aka Gossip Boy about The Weekend War and what’s next for the show.

Buzznet: What is The Weekend War?

Alex Hodges: -Nina Ruckteschler, Crystal Lauderdale, April Smith, Becky Smith, Brigitte Navarrete, Jaimee Navarrete, Kris Kidd, Lauren Fortner, Sean Macdonald, AnnaRose Kern, Jessi Vallaincourt, Lacey White, Lisa Stelly, Afton Williams, Kristen Dugas, Carl Ryan, Brandon Chamberlain, Gable, Brittany Flickinger and Lexi Tinniswood–

Weekend War is an episodic documentary about young adults and friends in the thick of, or in the beginning, of their lives in Hollywood (or wherever we end up). Goal is to start lifting the baby pink veil “reality tv” blanketed Hollywood and America with. Its for everyone (especially kids) who aren’t relating to what they’re seeing on “reality” tv and shining light on real individuals. If you’ve ever wondered “whose reality is the kardashians?” Financially speaking about 5% or less of America… I had the exact percentage earlier on a piece of paper, but mistakenly left it in the G6 thats parked on my yacht.

BN: How did the idea and concept come about?

AH: Started as something simple. I was shooting friends on the weekends to have something to look back on at 60. The concept is still what it was before the modest following (followarriors, we love you @Holly_jan) now its more of a calling to shine light on the real side of weekends for people dealing with life in Hollywood, and the dynamic friends bring to it. On television LA, and Hollywood specifically, is made to look like a utopia. Artists, bands, photographers, directors, new fashion designers, people in the entertainment industry etc. are all just normal people, which is something that is rarely to never communicated.

BN: The first episode is airing June 1st.. What can we expect to see?

AH: Shot fades into parents 5,000 sq. ft house complete with granite countertops, and crown molding. Mom and sister are fighting over who comes to New York fashion show with Aud… sorry thats the ‘edge of your seat’ new episode of “Audrina”

The opener for Weekend War is Dirk Mai and This Century pressed for time to shoot their album cover and music video for “Sound of Fire” in 3 days (Video in South Central with director Daniel Gomes) with friends (warriors) helping/rocking/modeling/warrioring out. Expect Joel’s daily affirmation, Dirk looking like Johnny Depp with an SLR, Kris Kidd shirtless, and a chance encounter with a homeless man with “two” many problems. (watch episode for exclusive inside joke)

BN: There are a ton of reality shows being broadcasted out in the world.. is it hard to over come the stereotype “reality” show?

AH: Some viewers are thrown by the claim Weekend War is different when they see 10+ of the warriors are beautiful girls, but explaining how we are different isn’t a problem. Most reality based shows are embellished to be ridiculous by producers. Our lives and friendships weren’t created to be explosive for the camera. Its easiest to point out how we differ in two ways. A. Our show will never open with a lower 3rd text at the bottom that reads “Story or concept written by”- insert writers name here. Because it is all real. B. Remember the final scene in “The Hills” when Brody Jenner is standing and the camera pulls back and then a studio lot is revealed? We can’t afford that.

BN: What message is The Weekend War wanting to send to the world? What do you want people to take away from the show?

AH: (@world you have a direct message from @theweekendwar)

Chasing dreams isn’t easy, but its being done every day. Artists the fans put on a pedestal for inspiring them are just as human as they are. (which effectively makes them that much more respectable because they’re just working really hard and successfully at their goal)

We want people to think, when they’re not in school or at work, they should be chasing down what truly makes them happy in anyway they can. Youth fades, relationships can too, money gets spent, but your love for some passions will never run out, so really which makes sense to pursue?

BN: What are some advantages and disadvantages of being a fully independent series?

AH: Weekend War is basically on the vegan option set up of reality shows. No gaffer on site, sound guy, intern who picks up the chalupa supremes via taco bell catering, or clapperboard (maybe the chalupa). Shooting this style is more complicated than one would think for one person, and half the time owners of venues see a Panasonic Ag HVX camera and freak because they assume its for Jackass 3D when we’re just shooting our friends being themselves.

However advantages include not seeing a producer (suspiciously similar to Dumbledore from HP) walking in mid shoot to say, “Brigitte and Jaimee. Hold your coke cans label out like this.” or “Um Kris Kidd thats your name right? No more Skins references, and put your pants back on.”

Serious advantages are shooting my best friends who we’d want to be with anyway, getting to talk to friends’ fans (some now weekend war fans) on a person to person level about REAL life here. The best is connecting with a huge number of people that get to see something new, yet still somehow understand it right away, and support it. We get to provide this middle ground because we don’t have the HUGE budget, we’re right there with them.

BN: I really love the “VIDS or it didn’t happen” concept.. what was the inspiration behind it?

AH: How it started was one of our 2 sets of twins in the group “coined” it. Weekend War uploaded a photo of April and Becky Smith w/ Jack (All Time Low) at a party onto our blog for the photo updates posted during the week. April see’s it and tweets, “Pics or it didnt happen BiTchEz” or something ridiculous like that. (everyone via twitter probably hated her for it, except us because it was a hilariously #subtletweet)

We started posting the photo updates as “Pics or it didnt happen” which caught on. This progressed to “episode previews” being “vids or it didnt happen”. Videos or it didnt happen (voidh) also double for extra segments that get edited for fun, we have 4 terabytes of weekend footage, sometimes you have to put something extra up, use the whole buffallo, you know?

BN: What is one of the most memorable moments you have from filming The Weekend War so far?

AH: Best thing about filming everything is you aren’t forced to use your brains memory ever again.. kidding. Its a toss up between Prom Redo with The Summer Set, Say Anything’s Coby Linder, and Will Tell by Casa De Awesome events, or New Years with Shiny Toy Guns at the Roosevelt Hotel. New Years I blacked out at around 6pm. Woke up the next day and found footage that looked better than usual including a video of Jaimee Navarrete biting a hole in Brandon Chamberlains (@casadeawesome) hand. Somehow even in that zombie stupor my body and camera were like, “this is happening”

BN: Once the episode airs.. how often to you plan on releasing new episodes? Weekly? Monthly? Next 1,000 likes on Facebook?

AH: At the rate we’re going the next episodes with Jac Vanek, Shiny Toy Guns, Emmure, and The Summer Set will be out early 2013. We’re trying to keep it fresh by releasing an episode every year and a half or so. No once the first episode is released we’re raising the number to 1,500 likes for the release of the second episode, then we’ll start releasing bi-weekly from there. People ask why we’re starting off that way with the facebook page, and its because we are trying to spread this, and it gets spread this way. If we can’t make the number goals then we will revert to our original plan of a large group sextape.

BN: What is next for The Weekend War? Any special feature episodes?

AH: A site versus the blog wikkiwar.tumblr.com and youtube.com/theweekendwar with set schedules for uploads and way more room for involvement from followarriors.

Flying to different locations to shoot the weekends of kids trying to make it, making it, or that seem to have that special warrior quality about them.

Special features? Like one of the twins getting put on IsAnyoneUp.com, or one of our friends having only half her head shaved at a party? If you mean like that… yes. Its time to make people take this question more seriously- “What did you do last weekend?”

For your eyes only Buzznet,

xoxo gossip boy

Go like The Weekend Warriors on Facebook and stay tuned for the first episode airing online on June 1st, 2011.