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Be sure to check out Robert's official web site 

You can also pick up a lot of very cool  "The Hunted" Merchandise at the official site. They've got everything from T-shirts, to Swords, coffee mugs to mouse pads. You can even pick out your very own set of vampire fangs. Too Cool!

Robert Chapin talks about his new project 

"The Hunted" 

By Jan Lopreste & Lyria Wollich

JL:  Tell us about "The Hunted" ~ how it came to be, what process you have gone through to create it, what hats you wear (writer, director, actor, producer)? Whew What are your hopes for its future….where would you like to see it go?

RC: I originally came up with the idea for "The Hunted" as part of a class project for the Acting Action stage combat workshop that I was teaching with Anthony DeLongis. I always thought it was important to have a performance venue for class, and for three years we had performed live shows at local renaissance fairs and special events.

The live shows, however, didn't draw as much attention as a short video spoof I produced called "The Ultimate Deathmatch Workout" which received over 250 submissions. I soon realized that film and video projects were of more interest to my students, myself, and the rest of LA, so I set out to create an ongoing project that I could produce myself.

I had always wanted to start a production company which would allow me to utilize all of my skills (writing, acting, directing, editing, and composing), but like most artists in LA, I lacked the capital to make it happen. I had several feature films projects like "Ring of Steel" sitting on the shelves waiting for financing, but I was getting tired of waiting. I was also tired of wasting my time and energy working on "freebies" - no-budget shows produced by arrogant first-time directors/producers whose only achievement was that they got the ball rolling. I decided it was my turn to get the ball rolling.

At the time, I remember hearing about a show that Bobby Lento had put together for public access called "Have Sword Will Travel." It was a no-budget fantasy / action show shot on video. I never did see it, but I saw the interest it generated, and realized that I could produce a no-budget show myself and make it really cool if I came up with the right concept.

The show would be set in modern day to avoid expensive costuming and locations. At the time, "Blair Witch" and reality TV shows like "Cops" were in full swing, which allowed us to shoot without expensive cameras or lighting. Our production value would have to consist of action, acting, and clever storylines. The tough part was justifying the swordplay, which was one of our main resources. The vampire legends already included decapitation, and swordfights on "Buffy" and "Highlander" had already set the stage for us.

The show would follow a group of ordinary people in LA who had all been bitten by vampires. To protect themselves from recurring attacks, they band together, train in the use of swords, form support groups to cope with blood addiction, and develop a website designed to promote the awareness of
vampires in our society. Unfortunately for them, however, everyone thinks the website is just another internet series and is never taken seriously.

I began writing a pilot for the show in early 2000. The original intent was to release the show on cable access, but the internet proved to be a much more exciting medium - instant distribution of a show on an international level. I approached several internet content providers for financing, but the response wasn't encoraging. Most wanted see a "proof of concept," which meant shooting the show and putting it online. Of course, if I went through all that trouble, what did I need them for? I began shooting episodes by the end of the year with no budget, editing the shows on my home PC with Adobe Premiere, and taught myself enough html to put up my own website (www.thehunted.tv).

Unfortunately, to make all of this happen, I had no time for several other pursuits which included teaching, which is why I originally came up with the idea. Several of my students are still part of the project, however, and have been invaluable to the production.

To date, the site has still not been officially marketed or released since my plan is to edit the episodes I've shot (over a dozen so far) before shooting the actual pilot. This is no different from most TV series, which typically shoot a few episodes to get the feel of the show before shooting the pilot. Once the pilot is ready to go online, I'll begin focusing on marketing and driving as many viewers as I can to the site.

Many folks ask me if I'm hoping the show will be "picked up." It would be nice to get a big paycheck for doing what I love to do, but I don't think the success of the show depends on that. I'm planning to continue to produce the show with whatever budget I can muster. My only fear now is the bizarre response I'm expecting from the internet underworld when I finally release the show to the masses.

If you're interested in the rest of the gory details, check out the ongoing Hunted saga online at www.thehunted.tv - Behind the Scenes: News.

JL:  We understand, from talking to Andrew Helm, that he is writing several of your episodes? What can you tell us about how the two of you became associated and what is it like working with him?

RC: This sounds completely unlike me, but I believe I first met Andrew at a bar in North Hollywood where Mark Ryan was having a get-together. I had no idea that he was working on Queen of Swords at the time. I just know that I felt a bit out of place and I think he did too. We got to talking, and I can't
remember what we talked about, but we seemed to hit it off.

Andrew has been invaluable to the show - not only for helping me rewrite the pilot episode, but for developing characters, episodes, story arcs, and the overall concept and bible. I must also give credit here to Kerry Glover and Gillian Horvath, who helped me develop the idea from the day I proposed it at lunch after class one day.

JL:  What other projects are you involved in at the present time?

RC: Sheesh, you'd think that acting, writing, directing, producing, and editing your own internet series would be enough, but hey, we all need to make a living somehow, so my day job still occasionally includes work as a visual effects artist for feature films and TV.

JL: If you could say anything to your fans (and you can) what would it be?

RC: RC: The Hunted has not yet been officially released, but we have several episodes online, we are in production, and we're currently being supported and "kept alive" by the fans. So if you'd like to help, please buy a t-shirt or any of our official merchandise online under our "Stuff" page at www.thehunted.tv. All proceeds go towards vampire awareness, and to insure that future episodes don't suck. Thanks guys!


Robert "The Bob" Chapin poses with Jan's son Nick


Robert Chapin has just completed shooting an episode of "The Hunted" during the last convention "Reunion" Held in LA

A picture of Bob as a pirate on the set of Hook

A shot from the set of Army of Darkness 

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