Web series shed light on life lesson


Melanie Nesteruk

Jesse DiFranco (green shirt) and Jason Kilbane (pink hat) prepare to shoot a scene for the web series “Second Time Around” in Bowman Hall.

Erin Zaranec

We’ve all been there — you’re reflecting on a situation and wish you could have just done one little thing differently. For too many of us, getting a redo would seem like a dream come true. As the main character in the web series “Second Time Around” discovers, getting the opportunity for a redo isn’t as great as we might expect.

Senior electronic media production major Caleb Ference is the creator, executive producer and head writer of “Second Time Around,” a student-run web series. His concept for the series was something almost all of us have dreamed about — getting to go back and fix all of our mistakes.

The series follows graduate student Austin Phillips, who gets taken back six years in time to his freshman year. Phillips gets the chance to relive part of his life, but soon realizes that fixing the mistakes he previously made alters his memory and his future.

The six-episode Web series is written, filmed and starred in by students. Five main actors are in the series: sophomore theater studies major Jason Kilbane, sophomore communication studies major Hanna Richards, senior communications studies major Jesse DiFranco, senior theater studies major Asia Jenkins and sophomore journalism major Bryan Heraghty.

Episodes vary greatly in length. The first episode was approximately 23 minutes, while the second episode was only about five minutes and the third episode was approximately ten minutes long. Each episode takes about one month to produce, with two to three weeks spent shooting and about two weeks spent editing.

Students of all years and majors assist with the web series. While professors do supervise some of the shooting, their assistance is minimal. “We had some students come in with experience, I would say about half of our cast came in with experience from our summer production, ‘Hell at Heathridge’,” Ference said.

Despite having some prior experience on the production team, Ference said students were taught skills as needed and have been given a learning experience by working on the web series.

“By a wide margin, I’m most proud of the people. The thing I’m constantly bragging about is the individual crew members and how hard everybody works,” Ference said.

For the cast and crew, episodes overlap. Writing and producing takes place for multiple episodes at one time. About a dozen students are working on set at any time, although there are over a dozen total students involved with production.

The series is always in need of more crewmembers. Anyone from electronic media production to fashion majors can assist on set and with production. The series’ Facebook page, “Second Time Around,” features the episodes themselves, cast bios and behind-the-scenes images and videos.

Contact Eric Zaranec at [email protected].