The new comedy series "For Export Only" premiered at the Dallas Screenwriter Association's (DSA) annual showcase on June 19 at the historic Texas Theater before routinely airing on YouTube.
The weekly web series, which writers, producers and stars Eric Cook and Douglas King call random, absurdist, skit comedy, will air new episodes every Thursday on a branded YouTube channel.
Douglas King, a local independent filmmaker, teamed up with Eric Cook to create the program, which was inspired by the classic British comedy Monty Python’s "Flying Circus."
“I love Monty Python,” says King. “When I was in middle school, I actually won an award for best actor for reenacting Python skits. I cherish that plastic tzotchke like it was an Oscar. If I only knew where I put it, I would display it proudly.”
Each episode is filmed in Allen and the surrounding area using local actors and crew. The producers are planning fifteen episodes for the first season, and then will take a few months to prepare the second season which will air before the end of the year.
“We strive for variety to make each episode have something that people will like, as well as something they will likely find offensive (sorry about that, Mom),” Cook says.
Based on the success of "For Export Only," Cook and King have big plans for the future.
“Once we build our audience on YouTube, which offers residual advertising income to producers whose videos receive over a thousand views per video,” notes King, “we are working on a feature-length script as well as a DVD release of the first season.”
It is also Cook and King’s intent to produce additional film and media projects using local talent in an effort to bolster the local film industry.
Douglas King, who studied filmmaking at the American Film Institute in Los Angeles and UCLA film school extension courses, is also a board member of the DSA. He produces another web series titled "Trailer Shots," which features him as a bartender reviewing movie trailers and provide cocktail recipes that fit the theme of the films.
King and Cook meet at a church in Plano and, recognizing a similar passion for absurd comedy, the two began writing skits which they eventually produced for video.
Cook has been involved with live theater for the past 15 years, acting with such groups as the Plano Children’s Theater and the Make Believers Troupe. Most recently he has been acting, writing and directing a local acting troupe, as well as making cameo appearances on other online comedy channels.