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Podcast – Creating comedy with Class of ‘07 writer/director Kacie Anning

Kacie Anning on her career, advice, and the process of pitching, developing and shooting the high-concept comedy Class of ‘07 with Prime Video Australia.

Kacie Anning on the set of Class of '07

Find this episode of the Screen Australia Podcast on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Pocket Casts

The day before Kacie Anning got on a plane for Vancouver to begin directing on Greg Daniels’ Amazon series Upload, she pitched her own concept to Prime Video Australia, for the apocalyptic high school reunion series Class of ’07.

On the latest episode of the Screen Australia podcast, Anning talks about how much she, Matchbox Pictures, and producer Mimi Butler planned for that 15-minute pitch to Head of Content Tyler Bern, compared to the usual casual and conversational pitching style you would see in Australia.

“Knowing Tyler was American, obviously knowing the platform was founded on American content, if you will, we were like, ‘Let's do the whole very polished, verbal, 10 to 15-minute spiel. So that was a process where we wrote that pitch, we rehearsed it, got it feeling very slick,” says Anning, the creator, writer, executive producer and director of the new Australian Amazon Original Series, Class of ‘07.

Following that successful pitch, Class of ’07 then went into an intensive development period with Prime Video Australia and throughout the podcast Anning explains how that differed from the typical Australian television development. She also discusses her career from web series Fragments of Friday to now, advice for general meetings in the US and why crafting the right tone in comedy – and particularly on a high-concept comedy like Class of ’07 – is “everything”.

In Class of ’07 a group of women are attending their 10-year reunion when an apocalyptic tidal wave strands them on the island peak of their high school campus. Starring Emily Browning, Caitlin Stasey, Megan Smart and more, you can watch all eight half-hour episodes on Prime Video Australia now.

“In Class of ‘07, what's fundamentally a female friendship story, [you] hang it on this really high stakes setting, and then get into all the crunchy and meaty stuff from there,” she says.

“It's definitely for me, a response to what I call ‘the wedge’ of your late twenties when people are really either settling down or blowing their relationships up and starting again. It's a really fertile, existential few years in your life and to throw all these characters together in one big pressure cooker situation felt like a pretty good premise.”

To hear more, listen to the full episode on the Screen Australia Podcast.

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