Exclusive – Petrol – The Web Series

A web-series like no other. Petrol pulls out all the stops, breaks all the rules and reinvents the wheel. If you enjoy the rush of “off the rails” car chases, combined with the criminal underground, deals gone wrong and life and death hanging by a thread in every episode, then the web-series Petrol deserves your attention. For not only does Petrol bring the entertainment value, it brings the production value of a primetime show, both visually and masterfully through provocative and alluring storytelling.  exclusive

 I found the first five episodes on Youtube. The remainder of season one episodes(five) are being released on Jan. 13. As I watched the first five episodes, the characters become more clear and the crime boss’s identity (The Employer) is slowly revealed as well as his motivations behind the crimes. Every episode involves a crime followed by a high-speed chase. I had to keep reminding myself that this is a web series. Given the quality, stunts and professionalism, you tend to forget that.  

 Ant Horasanli directs and co-writes the series with Reza Sholeh out of Toronto. I had the unique privilege of speaking to them both about the first season and how this amazing creation came to fruition. 

 

“Thank you both so much for creating a show for car enthusiasts and thrill seekers. There is no other web-series that comes close to Petrol. How did you convince investors that a show of this caliber was worth the risk and could draw an audience?”

Ant Horasanli answers, “When I was first breaking into entertainment, I made a documentary about street racing and modified sports-cars. This was followed by making some music videos and producing two features. Although this is my first jump into action/drama, my music videos were narrative based allowing for a somewhat familiar transition.

Once we made the pilot episode, the investors immediately knew we had an audience. The only concern, could we continue to create episodes with the same quality as the first.”

 

Reza Sholeh attributes the great visual shots to their two DOP’s, Tom Kurek and Tyson Burger. They tell me they’re using two different RED cameras with cinematic lenses. The cameras have been mounted under cars, in the backseats of convertibles as well as other nefarious locations.  

“I like to tell each episode out of chronological order. It leaves the impression of a larger production. Stylizing the episodes off shows such as Mission Impossible, Sons Of Anarchy, The Fast N’ Furious is absolutely intentional. As the episodes progress, we also try to make the next one better than the previous, through multifarious camera angles and assortment of petroleum reliant vehicles. In the next season, we’d like to try and introduce skidoo chases, truck chases as well as other shooting locations. Montreal and Vancouver are two possibilities.”

 

“You have some great locations in your series. One in particular stands out. There is a scene at the American/Canadian border. How on earth did you achieve permission?”

“(laughter) Thank you for the compliment but the US/Cdn. location was actually a Truck Weigh Station. They were tremendous with their support of our request and allowed us to shoot the scene on Thanksgiving because it was especially slow that day. Another lucky location we had permission to shoot was the underground parking lot of City Hall. As long as we had our paperwork (insurance, permits, etc.) in order, they were incredibly helpful.”

 

“How long does it take to shoot each episode and how large is the crew?”

“Although each episode presents its own challenges, we use approx. three full days and a crew of six but have used more on complicated scenes. In addition to the challenges of nailing down a location, once acquired we use it for two scenes. We will shoot the opening scene of the next episode and apply it to the end of the previous one as an upcoming preview.”

 

They’ve been invited to the Vancouver Web Fest in March. I expect the show to be up for a few awards. In the new season, there may be a few cameos by some big name talent. Unwilling to speculate or name drop, Ant and Reza have informed me of being approached by some well-known talent and are excited to put them in front of the camera.

 

The web series has taken on a life of its own and the opportunities from the shows success keep coming. A script for a feature film based on the web series is currently in development. They are also in post on another feature entitled, Gear.

 

This web-series is fast becoming the one to watch. Please take a look at the following websites to be informed and entertained.  

http://www.petroltheseries.com

https://www.youtube.com/petroltheseries

 

 

*Film, Gear is in post. The script for a feature film based on the series is in development.

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