The cast and crew of “Mythic Quest” deserve an Emmy.
What you need to know
- The Hollywood Reporter sat down with the creators of “Mythic Quest”.
- The creators talked about how they used 40 iPhones to shoot their “Quarantine” special.
- Rob McElhenney, who stars in the show as well, says it was the most difficult production he has ever done.
“Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet”, like any television series right now, has been forced to stop filming amid the coronavirus pandemic. That, however, did not stop the crew and cast from shooting a special “Mythic Quest: Quarantine” episode using the power of the iPhone.
The episode, which is set to premiere on Friday, tells the story of how the team behind the game is handling self-isolation during the pandemic. Reported by The Hollywood Reporter, showrunners Rob McElhenney and Megan Ganz sat down with the outlet to talk about how they created the episode.
Ganz started off by saying that the creators decided that the second season of the show should not focus on the pandemic, but they knew they had to cover it somehow.
“But our feeling was that when we’re done with this quarantine, people are not going to want to keep talking about it. They’ll be sick of it. So Rob had this idea, which was basically, “What if we just do something now, and then we can acknowledge it and get it out of the way so that when we do eventually return to the second season, we don’t have to have it be about the quarantine? It’ll just be post-quarantine.”
Once the idea was there, McElhenney pitched it to Apple, who he thought might shoot down the concept. He was, however, surprised to find that they responded to the special with enthusiasm.
“Honestly, I thought they were probably going to say no because it’s just technically difficult. There are a few shows that subsequently have come out. Parks and Rec had not [aired] when we conceived of this, but I found out that Mike [Schur] was doing it, and I called him and asked him a bunch of questions. I thought, “If we’re going to do it, I’d like it to look and feel as if this was a creative choice, not a choice that was created by limitation.” That’s what Apple responded to. Once I walked them through it, we shot a little test and said, “This is what it could look like and sound like and feel like.” They pulled the trigger, and we got to work.”
Each cast member was shipped three iPhones and AirPods in order to film themselves at home. The production was incredibly complicated, as the crew had to train each actor how to do the work of multiple crew members.
“To get [footage] through to editorial as fast as possible, because we wanted to get this episode done and out while we were still in quarantine. The way we’d do each scene is they’d take their laptop/desktop cameras that you would see normally for a teleconferencing thing and they’d put the iPhone directly in front of that camera, so I essentially had video village from my house. I could see what every actor’s camera is picking up and you could also see the readings for the audio. Mike, the cinematographer, could double-check all the settings and make sure that everything was running at the right revolution, frame rate, etc. Then we would run the scene, and the actors would be talking to one another the same way we’re talking right now [by phone], through our AirPods.”
McElhenney says that it was the most difficult production he’s ever been a part of, but that he’d be up for doing it all over again.
“Honestly, it was the hardest production I’ve ever been associated with, but it is also, by a mile, the production of which I’m most proud. If in fact we aren’t going back for a significant amount of time and there’s a good, positive response to this, I don’t see why we couldn’t consider another. We certainly have the system down.”
You can read the full interview at The Hollywood Reporter.