Columbia Filmmakers Debut New Web Series, 'Naysayer'
BY Angeline Dimambro, July 15, 2021
Naysayer is the new web series developed and produced by a team of alumni. The series was executive produced and directed by alumnus Michael Molina Minard ’16, with several alumni serving as key collaborators, including Angelos Rompolis ’15 (director of photography), Brendon Kingsbury ’16 (assistant camera and key grip), and Sean Webley ’16 (grip).
The ten-episode short form web series is a dramatic coming of age web series for teens and young adults set in New York City. On the hunt for drugs, girls and social media fame, a crew of teen skateboarders meet their match when one of them falls in love and spins out of control. Randall, a survivor of a school shooting, falls hard for an affluent, gun-loving provocateur named Cynthia, ripping open his version of the past and changing their group forever.
Naysayer’s first season was produced by Minard’s production company, Narrative Creep. Originally intended to air on Quibi, the web series launched July 2021 and is now available to stream digitally.
Watch the trailer below and stream all episodes on the series’ webpage.
Michael Molina Minard is a second-generation filmmaker who worked at HBO and Levinson/Fontana while completing his Screenwriting MFA at Columbia University. His Columbia non-thesis short sports drama Standing8 was a 2015 contender for the Academy Award, a Columbia Jury Selection, recipient of the Arthur P. Sloan Award, Urbanworld Grand Jury Prize, Panavision Limelight Award and DGA Outstanding Directorial Award. Minard’s thesis feature screenplay, Centipede Force, won the coveted Litwak Award and placed in the 2016 Nicholl Fellowship. It will go into development at Warner Bros in 2022. Minard was nominated for the 2017 Humanitas Award. He is the executive producer, director, and sound recordist/mixer for Naysayer, his first long-form project.
Director of Photography/Gaffer, Angelos Rompolis is a Greek cinematographer who completed his studies at the MFA Film Program of Columbia University in 2015. Rompolis has dozens of shorts as well as a feature film to his credit, including many that have played at SXSW, Palm Springs, and Cannes. He is the recipient of the Alexander Onassis Scholarship. Naysayer marks the second time Rompolis and Minard have collaborated as director of photography and director respectively. In addition to serving as the DP for the web series, Rompolis acted as the main gaffer as well.
Brendon Kingsbury is a New York native with a one-of-a-kind gift for visual narrative. His versatility as a filmmaker led him to Tribeca Film Festival in 2011 with One Over Wanderlust. He completed the MFA Film Program of Columbia University in 2015. Minard previously produced Kingsbury’s thesis short, Gripping Nothing. Kingsbury served as assistant camera, key grip, and best boy on Naysayer.
Sean Webley is a visual artist and filmmaker based in New York City. He completed the MFA Film Program of Columbia University in 2015. In addition to providing moral support to his fellow filmmakers on Naysayer, he also served as the dolly grip on the first season of the project.