Sometimes you simply know if you’re in the suitable place. Upon seeing the 2013 title Random Encounters, a movie starring a lady named Meghan Markle, clearly offered on the Passionflix homepage, I knew I used to be in precisely the suitable spot.
Passionflix is a streaming service devoted to romance movies, which features a collection of originals which have largely been tailored from romance novels, in addition to library titles which embody every part from the 1996 model of Jane Eyre to 2014’s Could This Be Love starring Real Housewives of Atlanta solid member Drew Sidora, to movies such because the romantic comedies Cuban Fury with Chris O’Dowd and Two Night Stand with Miles Teller.
Perhaps one of the best factor Passionflix has going for it is that when you go surfing, precisely what you might be getting. It desires to service no matter temper you’re in on the time, with classes comparable to Chutzpah and Hoohah, Love and Laughter, and Thrill Me. And should you’re feeling somewhat freaky, that’s nice too. The BON part charges teams of titles from Oh So Vanilla (one flame emoji) to Toe Curling Yumminess (4 flame emojis!). The website boasts tons of vacation movies, in addition to a Wine and Cheese Lounge part, which incorporates bloopers and behind the scenes featurettes from their unique titles which embody Gabriel’s Inferno, Dirty Sexy Saint, the newest paranormal romance movie Wicked, and the collection Driven which returns for Season 2 on July 22.
Sounds fairly good, proper? Well then it ought to come as no shock that the location was based by South African filmmaker Tosca Musk in 2017, who has worn quite a lot of hats over the course of her profession as a director, producer, author, and govt, and who has actually been in a position to help, promote, and faucet into Passionflix’s mission. “We have a very specific mandate, we are a romance channel,” she instructed me over Zoom final month. “We want you to go through a rollercoaster of emotions and then end with a happier, hopeful ending. You’ve had your busy day, you’ve had whatever crises that you’ve had to deal with, and at the end of the day, you want to sit there with a glass of wine or a cup of tea and you just want to enjoy this emotional ride that you’re going to go through, knowing that everyone’s going to be fine in the end, not murdered or destroyed in some horrible way. But they’re just going to come out in the end, and you’re gonna cry, you’re gonna laugh, and then you’re happy. Okay, great, now I can go to sleep. I feel like my bucket has been filled up again and now I can start my next day. So everything on our platform is for that purpose.”
So should you’ve lately loved the freakiness of Sex/Life, the bodice-ripping of Bridgerton, the calming consolation of Hallmark motion pictures, and even the demure vampires of Twilight, there is one thing, or actually, many stuff you’ll like on Passionflix. After all, the location is all about pleasing its followers. Many of their unique movies are tailored from fashionable novels, and as Musk defined, “I have a great Director of Development who reads a lot of books,” with amusing. “We’re still very small, so while we are three-and-a-half years old and we have managed to survive so long, which is great, we have to continue surviving. So we do look at how well the book sells. We have a few books that maybe didn’t sell as well as others, but then they have different emotional content to them or they touched us particularly deeply. And for the most part, we just want a variety of authors and we want a variety of genres within our genre. We’ll go from drama to action to comedy and we try to keep it that way.”
Musk is additionally used to selection in her roles at Passionflix as she commonly jumps behind the digicam to direct, estimating the location will produce 5 – 6 unique movies this yr now that working circumstances are safer. When requested about directing these movies, Musk stated, “I come off as like, ‘Oh, it’s so fun’, and it is fun. But it’s super high stress, because I am dealing with millions of fans who want exactly what they want and it’s hard to dive into everyone’s head. There are certain books that we look at like, well, that fan base is gonna hunt me down and kill me if I don’t get it, so I better work extra. But there’s only so much a person can do.”
Fan enter is thought-about for these tasks like by no means earlier than; diehards are invited to the set to look at filming and weigh in on whether or not a scene is staying true to the supply materials and if it’s simply how they pictured it in live-action. For Musk, the key to adapting the fabric is, “Loving and respecting the material, so that’s what I have to do. I have to thoroughly enjoy it to really respect the author. I usually communicate with the author, ‘Do you like this T-shirt, do you like this eye color, do you like this hair color, do you like this location?’, and we’re constantly doing it. Bringing in the fans is an icing on the top. If I’m making [something] for me, I feel like I’m making it for a lot of fans.”
Musk is additionally very positive of the issues she is a fan of. “I get very annoyed with any movies that are very male-centric and that have very few females in it, so I tend not to watch them. I also tend not to watch any content that’s about females who are depressed and unhappy and struggling in life, that doesn’t appeal to me. I want to watch things that are going to give me hope and inspire me. Quite honestly, I could watch the BBC version of Pride and Prejudice every single day. So that’s really my jam.”
My jam is the aforementioned extras that the location offers for followers of those tasks, of which Musk stated, “I love being able to invite our fans to set. I love being able to include fans on some of the things that go on behind the scenes. When you actually can see that we’re all just laughing and having the best time, I think it breaks down a bit of the barrier and humanizes us all a lot more. I have a fantastic DP named Dennis Maloney, and he’s done all the movies that I’ve directed for Passionflix. So if something starts happening and people go a little off the rails, he’ll just keep rolling. He just loves to be able to capture those moments, he thinks it’s great.”
A brand new addition to filming steamier scenes nowadays is the intimacy coordinator, which Musk is a giant fan of, and has beforehand type of acted as one herself along with her actors on set. “When we have women and men in some extremely sensitive, intimate moments, not having anyone there to help guide or be able to be there for them to talk to is bad. I think we should definitely have somebody for them to talk to. Passionflix is super small, we’re six people, and I know my actors very, very well. So we have a conversation with them. On Driven season two, we had an intimacy coordinator. On Gabriel’s Inferno, we didn’t, but we’d already gone through the whole thing before the intimacy coordinator situation had become a position really, and I addressed it with my actors. I’m so sensitive to how women’s bodies are portrayed and how men touch women. It’s so specific to me that oftentimes people would consider me more of an intimacy coordinator. Even when our intimacy coordinators are on set, the actors asked that I be there while they coordinate a lot of the movements. So I think it just depends on the type of film that you’re doing and the relationship you have with the director. But yes, I think they’re an important position and if you have a really good and sensitive intimacy coordinator, you’ll have a much more comfortable set.”
Of course, Musk is sensible sufficient to know that it’s simply as good to dole out recommendation because it is to obtain it, and confirms that sure, with a household as clever as hers, she’s very open to their recommendation. Between mother and mannequin Maye Musk, brother Kimbal Musk who is a restauranteur and entrepreneur, and her different brother Elon (maybe you’ve heard of the SNL host earlier than?), enterprise is positive to come back up at household gatherings. “I certainly get a lot of advice, which is really fantastic,” she stated. “I don’t know how much advice they need from me. They’ve been doing their particular industries quite a bit longer. But my mother and my brothers are incredible supporters of what I do. The really incredible thing is that I can go to them for advice anytime I need it, so that is wonderful.”
I couldn’t assist however get a little bit of Musk’s ideas on one other notion, that romantic comedies are “ruining” fashionable girls nowadays — our expectations, our courting lives (or lack thereof), and many others. But Musk isn’t having it. “I say you don’t need men,” she acknowledged bluntly. “I had children by myself, had an anonymous sperm donor and I’m extremely happy, so I’m not making anything for you to get a man.” One of her lovely eight-year-old twins even wandered in throughout our chat and whispered in her ear, in the hunt for his bagel and cream cheese for breakfast. Once he scampered away, she continued, “Do I think that rom-coms have destroyed the images of men? No, I don’t. I think that anything that shows people in a positive light is going to only make us feel stronger about relationships. Everything that we do is to show how communication, connection and compromise allow you to have good relationships. So, everything I’m passionate about, and certainly all romance novels, are basically two people talking constantly. They’re just constantly talking about every issue that they have and sharing and then breaking up and coming back because they’re sharing their issue and whatever it is. So I’d say I think that we’re helping.”
For future Passionflix tasks, Musk says, “I would love to do historical; I think something political would be kind of cool.” But it’s all about targets for the location which focus across the content material and subscriber numbers, sure, however primarily subscriber engagement. “We have a very strong engagement and a strong connection with our viewers and the fans of this work. So we want to make sure that we’re not just churning out content to get more subscribers, but are also keeping those subscribers engaged and are providing content for them, because the entire service was built to make content for the fans of these books. And so as long as we’re sticking with that mandate and sticking with our mission, which is to empower men and women through emotional strength, and to remove shame from sexuality, I think that will be fine.”