Catch Up: Katie Boland

It has been one year, two months and several notable projects like The Master and Sex After Kids, since I sat down with Katie Boland in a Queen East coffee shop and to keep a long story short, she’s been busy.

Currently working on a webseries titled Long Story, Short, an adaptation of her collection of personal essays, Boland is working alongside her mother, filmmaker Gail Harvey, to bring the story of a young woman during a rowdy summer full of booze and weird hook-ups to life.

“Long Story, Short is about the summer Kristen Harvey loses her mind,” says Boland, who plays the lead character and is also co-producing the series with her director mother. “It’s based on a summer that I remember as collectively being the best and worst time of my life; I had never had more fun but I’d never been so lost.”

The series stars Boland alongside real life friends Lauren Collins (Degrassi, Servitude, Charlie Bartlett) and Tommie-Amber Pirie (The F Word) with Noah Reid (Score: A Hockey Musical, Old Stock) and Michael Seater (Life With Derek, 18 to Life). After being granted funds by the Independent Production Fund (IPF), Boland went to Facebook and started contacting her friends who could help out in any capacity (her best friend, Amy Clarke, is the wardrobe designer). She brought her mother on as her co-producer for guidance; the two had already shared a producing credit on their film Looking Is The Original Sin.

“My mom and I are producing this because no one else was going to,” Katie says via e-mail. She fell into the producer role out of necessity, when she initially realized that there was much more in her stories that needed to be shown visually.

“[We chose to do a] web series because there was more story than a short film and the arcs of the stories didn’t work as a feature,” she says. “A story is aided by music, colour, actors, so I thought, why not see if this has legs?” Once the funding was secured, it seemed only natural that Long Story, Short not only told Boland’s story but the story of the city where it takes place.

“The web series is very much about Toronto, and the only way that I could show Toronto how I see it, how I love it, was through visuals.” While she admits she has taken some liberties with the stories, adding fictional drama that didn’t exist in the collection of essays, Boland is enjoying stretching the truth for the sake of (web) television.

“It’s fun blending my own history and fiction.”

Stills Photographer | Arden Wray