Who is Michael Lippert?
I’m not sure. I’ll let you know when I’m dead. For now I seem to be flip flopping between being a responsible person who earns money helping people with their careers and a Writer/Director with a half hour pilot for an office dramedy that I’m trying to turn into a series, among other things. I prefer the latter, but not being a starving artist also has it’s charms. My friends have started calling me Toronto Tarantino. I kind of like that.
What is Purple Squirrels?
Purple Squirrels is a half hour comedy series that mixes the coming-of-age-in-the-city-dramedy of HBO’s Girls with the corporate satire of Office Space, all set in Toronto. It’s about three new grads who get their first break as Recruiters at a Downtown Toronto staffing agency and all the shenanigans that ensue in the office and in this crazy city. The first season is twelve episodes. It’s really funny.
Where did the inspiration come from?
I was once a 20-something that got his first break as a Recruiter at a Downtown Toronto staffing agency. That’s not quite true. I got my first break selling international distribution rights for some awful movies no one has probably heard of out of the back room of a guy’s house in Etobicoke. That’s another story.
What do you hope to accomplish with it?
I think the initial aim was just to make something. Looking back, I went into this totally blind. I had a really funny script for the pilot episode of a well thought-out series and I was going to make it, no matter what anyone told me. Thankfully along the way I recruited a brilliant cinematographer, a brilliant 1st AD, a brilliant composer and a brilliant editor who all knew a lot about what they were doing and some pretty good young actors. My former partner also had friends with some pretty legit equipment. I tell everyone that I made a pilot for no money and they have an expectation of what it will be. Then they see the trailer and are like, “Huh? Was that a steadicam? Where can I see this?” I’m pretty proud of how it turned out.
Is there anything (in your opinion) that sets it apart from other Canadian comedy series?
It doesn’t suck.
Are there any other projects you’re working on, that you’d like to share/talk about?
There’s so much floating around and I’m not sure what I can talk about.
The current prerogative is putting together the pilot with an actual budget and some recognizable names. I can’t say too much yet, but trust me, it’s going to be beyond awesome.
There’s also a potential modern day samurai flick that’s pretty exciting. A metal-themed reality show that I would love to do. And another cheap comedy internet show that would be a lot of fun. There’s also talks of a prank show somewhere in there, but you never know how these things will turn out. The number one goal is getting Purple Squirrels made the way it deserves to be.
If you could scream 1 thing out to the world, what would it be?
I’m here and I won’t be ignored.