Barbra Dillon, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief: Congratulations on the recent release of your romantic comedy short film, Uber Ex. For our readers who may be unfamiliar, what can you tell us about the premise of the film?
Matt Braunsdorf: The film follows a date between Kate and David who are in the early stages of their blossoming relationship. When they call a car service to take them home from a party, the driver turns out to be Kate’s long-lost ex-boyfriend, the one that got away. From there, we find our characters stuck in the car in a bit of a love triangle, where all bets are off by the time they reach their destination.
Jonathan Marballi: At its core, we wanted to examine a choice for Kate between choosing the comfort of the past that is known or the risk of the future that is unknown. In essence, to present a challenge for her arrested development, and also make some jokes and have some fun with how incredibly awkward it is to have all of this unfold in an Uber.
BD: With so few romantic comedies being made today, what can you tell us about the inspiration behind the film?
JM: I've always loved the genre; I was dying to write a new short for Matt to direct and for my friend, Jeremy, who plays Lev, to act with me in, and I was at a point in a romantic relationship where I was feeling my heart pulled in two directions, wanderlust vs. settling down I suppose, which isn't even necessarily a real dichotomy, but feels like one to a lot of us. I was also living in LA without a car at the time, often feeling trapped inside of Ubers in conversations I wasn't necessarily looking to have. Put all that together and you get Uber Ex.
MB: I thought it started with the punny title.
JM: Well, yeah, that too.
MB: Also, like you said, there are less rom-coms out there right at the moment, so there’s no better time than now to re-explore their possibilities, hopefully in new and interesting ways.
BD: How would you describe your creative process in working with the cast and crew of Uber Ex to bring the project to life?
MB: We are all about collaboration. Jon and I have been working together for about 7 years now, having gotten our starts at the Upright Citizens Brigade (UCB) in New York. Over the years, we’ve developed a great rapport and true respect for one another’s creative minds. It helps that we like a lot of the same movies, as well, so often we find our sensibilities are pretty much the same, so there is very little disagreement when we develop our films. Paige (Kate) I knew was a great actress having worked with her before.
JM: And this whole thing started because I wanted to write something for Jeremy (Lev), who I met and roomed with while we were doing a play in Vermont a few years ago.
MB: Since we're all prior collaborators, the shorthand and respect was already there. We just listen to each other and leave plenty of room to play and improvise, something we kept around from our days at UCB.
BD: Do you have any plans to extend the story of the characters to subsequent films?
MB: The hope was always there to potentially turn this story into a feature film.
JM: Yeah, like instead of just going home, they end up going on a "wild and crazy" one-night adventure.
MB: Yeah, like One Fine Day meets Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle.
JM: That being said, we've had a blast with the film on the festival circuit for the last year, and in the meantime have started pursuing other projects, so we'll see. I can promise that the themes will certainly be incorporated into future stories, because when I write I usually just start with whatever's on my mind.
BD: What do you hope that viewers will take away from the short film?
MB: I think our hope is to get across the idea that everything new in life is a risk, but, often, for the sake of finding out who you are, the risk is worth it, whether it works out or not.
JM: Plus, we hope they take a few laughs home with them.
BD: Are there any other projects on which you are currently working that you would like to share with our readers?
MB: We're in pre-production on our next short film.
JM: It's a comedic thriller, but that's probably all we should say right now, because nobody loves rewriting whole scripts more than me.
BD: Lastly, what would you like to tell fans who want to learn more about Uber Ex?
JM: Check it out on Vimeo and follow us there and on the ol' Instagram (@jonnymarblesfilms) for updates on Uber Ex and our next project.