As a filmmaker and artist, I had long aspired to create a project inspired by the classic and cult films I loved and their artful aesthetic: dreamy locations realized on Hollywood soundstages in painted backdrops and rear projection —the finished product marked by beautiful oversaturated color or rich black and white. With substance trumping style in my book, I waited for inspiration to strike and provide content rich enough to match the aesthetic. Ultimately, the stunning response I continually encountered from male filmmakers (re: earlier projects) who simply couldn’t process the concept that a “lady” had designed, directed, written, and edited a film, triggered something deep inside, and in the blink of an eye, everything came into came into focus. My mission was as clear as day: create a beautifully designed, tightly written exploitation satire with broad appeal and mainstream commercial value —an amalgam of Russ Meyer films, mid-century mores, Batman ’66 and beyond —about a gang of scantily clad motorcycle-bound women with incredible powers, rampaging across the American landscape, singularly focused on putting men in their place. I’d call it Ladies Revenge —the revenge in the title referencing both the variety the female characters achieve against the men in the show, as well as the huge personal win that would accompany ensnaring legions of male fans (at the start) with wigs, false eyelashes, and pushup bras, and holding them the grip of expert filmmaking and Mel Brooks-esque comedy (obscuring embedded social commentary.) I ran the concept by my cohort David Crabb who simply stated, “Add ‘Club’ to the title and you’ve got a winner.” We immediately got to work, and with that, Ladies Revenge Club was born.
Nope! Ladies Revenge Club was produced on a shoestring. (Understatement!) The project would not have been possible without the temporal contributions of enthusiastic film, television, and theater professionals who gave their talents generously (along with a ton of elbow grease!)
No greenscreen at all! The universe of Ladies Revenge Club came to life at Axis Theater Company’s subterranean home base in New York City —One Sheridan Square —a bare stage equipped with a rear projection system and preset lighting grid. LRC Director/Designer Margo Neely created every “location” in the series from scratch (over 500 original backdrops) — building the projected backgrounds in pre-production in Photoshop, After Effects, and Final Cut Pro from intricate compilations of still images, original artwork, and real world B-roll. The 2D, rear projected backdrops were supplemented during filming with foreground props and set pieces to add a dose of dimension and realism. Margo Neely and LRC’s Director of Photography Sean Martin collaborated with lighting designer David Zeffren to achieve a finished look which balanced real world with other worldly, ultimately giving the fictional Manville and Ladies Revenge Club a retro-modern aesthetic all its own.
Director/Designer Margo Neely created every “location” in the series from scratch (over 500 original backdrops) — building the projected backgrounds in pre-production in Photoshop, After Effects, and Final Cut Pro from intricate compilations of still images, original artwork, and real world B-roll. She also serves as show editor, vfx producer, and sound designer in post-production. Ms. Neely is independently responsible for all design aspects of the Ladies Revenge Club brand: Its website, creative supplemental materials and marketing, and the official line of LRC merchandise. To see more of her work, please visit www.neelyair.com.
Not yet… but if they want to, we’re all ears!