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Meet Rebecca Warm and Emily Rifkin of Gremlin Girl in Hollywood

Today we’d like to introduce you to Rebecca Warm and Emily Rifkin.

Rebecca, Emily, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
We are creating an animated web-series called Gremlin Girl. It’s about Franny, an independent, seemingly confident woman, and Gremlin Girl, the adorable manifestation of Franny’s neurotic anxieties.

Gremlin Girl started as a single panel comic Rebecca created on Instagram to express being challenged by her fears and anxieties and more so, to find humor in it. She brought the idea to Emily after a close friend forcefully nudged her to, considering Emily’s background in animation (Thanks, Jash!). Emily immediately related to it (obvi), and saw the depth in the concept, visualizing it as so much more dimensional than a single beat storyline.

We are both alumni of Northwestern University, and moved to Los Angeles to live out our creative dreams – (patience you must have my young padawan). With Emily’s cartoon background (Disney’s Fancy Nancy and Amazon’s Tumble Leaf) and Rebecca’s comedy and theatrical ventures (Groundlings Sunday Company, TruTV, Mattel’s Barbie, Live!), they value telling stories and depicting honest, relatable experiences…thus we have, GREMLIN GIRL.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
We’ve faced so many challenges creating this cartoon. The first challenge was overcoming our own inner gremlins who tell us we’re not funny enough or can’t draw! As a two-woman team, it’s been an incredible learning experience. One major challenge we’ve faced is that drawing is HARD. We’ve embraced our lack of professional drawing abilities and decided to go with stick figures, intentionally developing an overall homemade look. Our studio is also homemade (aka, Emily’s bedroom), and that has caused some technical challenges, particularly with recording. In addition, we both have full-time jobs with different schedules, so it’s challenging to be in the same place at the same time. Between creating, publishing, and promoting the show, we’ve come to realize how much work it is for just the two of us. Also, Emily is constantly spilling tea on her sketchbook.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Gremlin Girl – what should we know?
Gremlin Girl is our first collaboration and business venture, although we’ve been friends for many years. Our strengths complement each other very well. Rebecca contributes her comedy and acting abilities, while Emily visualizes the action. Rebecca writes the scripts and voices the characters; Emily directs, storyboards and animates. As a whole, the show requires: conceptualizing episodes, writing the scripts, editing the scripts, storyboarding, character design, background design, clean-up in photoshop, self-doubting, dialogue recording, editing, animating, songwriting (with the help of a super talented composer, Scott Passarella), SFX and foley, rendering, re-rendering when we notice a blink is out of place, making business cards, networking, GIF-making, social media promoting, website-building, cheerleading, copyright retrieving, YouTube channel managing, writing and designing press releases, and doing it all over again. We know creating any show entails all of this, but as a two-person operation, it’s a LOT of work. However, Gremlin Girl means SO much to us on a personal level; we can’t NOT make it.

In an age when it’s still taboo to discuss mental health, we want to both entertain and create an open dialogue about the mind. Overthinking, which often leads to anxiety, can be paralyzing. We aim to use comedy and insight to demonstrate how anxiety, depression, and the critical voice can impact our daily lives. In watching Gremlin Girl, we hope people are able to find levity and humor in the moments their inner critic becomes amplified.

Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
Scott Passarella-Brilliant musician
Sean Datson-Fiance and no. 1 fan
Jennifer Ashley Eskew – first believer
All the moms and dads and sisters
Robin–the best beagle ever

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