‘The Hillywood Present’ Interview: Hilly & Hannah Speak the ‘Good Omens’ Parody, Working with Neil Gaiman, ‘Twilight’ Beginnings, & Extra!

The Hillywood Present is a YouTube channel that was began on the finish of 2006 that options musical parodies of reveals and flicks, set to songs that might be on repeat in anybody’s head. Starting with impersonations of Johnny Depp and his many characters comparable to Jack Sparrow (Pirates of the Caribbean) and Edward Scissorhands, the channel has parodied franchises from The Starvation Video games to Physician Who with catchy parodies and video. Behind Hillywood are sisters Hilly and Hannah Hindi — the duo who writes, directs, stars in, and every parody, plus sustaining an unimaginable on-line efficiency that fosters a wonderful relationship between the sisters and their followers.

We had the prospect to talk with Hilly and Hannah about their most up-to-date parody mission for Prime Video’s Good Omens collection … a mission which required persistence however finally turned a dream come true.

Notice: This interview has been edited for readability.

Nerds & Past: Let’s leap proper in and discuss concerning the background on The Hillywood Present. How did the present come to fruition, and what has it been like watching it actually develop to what it’s develop into at present?

Hilly Hindi: Thanks! The Hillywood Present started in 2006 as a contest entry for AOL Pink. AOL requested teenagers to ship of their concepts, for their very own net present, as this was earlier than YouTube was common. I got here up with an idea of impersonating completely different characters and requested Hannah to assist me movie it. Lengthy story brief, I got here in third place, however after it was over, we began receiving emails and feedback from individuals who had voted for me, asking, “Hey, I actually appreciated your sketch present! Might you, possibly, proceed this on YouTube and make it a collection?”

We have been a bit youthful, on the time, and we liked filmmaking as a passion, so we stated, “Certain, why not?” We then continued the brief sketches on YouTube. Nonetheless, in 2009, we created a Twilight Parody. It was the primary of our movies that wasn’t only a sketch. It was a full-blown music video! In a single day, it acquired 100k views! We had by no means skilled that many views on our earlier sketches earlier than and thought, “Oh my God, what simply occurred?!” That’s after we discovered the method for Hillywood.

Hannah and I couldn’t have foreseen The Hillywood Present to be the place it’s now! It’s develop into our little life. It’s not our full-time careers, however we hope to make it that sometime. By no means in my wildest goals would I’ve imagined how a lot it has grown.

Nerds & Past: I’ll say that I used to be a type of 100,000 views on the primary Twilight. I used to be 13, so undoubtedly the goal demographic for the franchise on the time, and I distinctly keep in mind a good friend sending me a hyperlink to the Twilight parody and all of us watching it collectively at our subsequent sleepover.

Hilly Hindi: Oh my God, that’s so cute! After we take a look at Twilight Parody, now, we expect, “Oh my God, the standard is a bit pixelated!” It may not look the very best, it may not be the very best, nonetheless, individuals loved it and everybody begins from someplace.

The Hillywood Present/Jack Bowring

Nerds & Past: Let’s discuss concerning the latest parody for Good Omens. How did that mission come about?

Hilly Hindi: Good Omens premiered on Prime Video whereas we have been filming The Umbrella Academy Parody in 2019. So, throughout filming, we have been receiving requests from our followers saying, “It might actually be cool for those who guys might do a Good Omens Parody!” After all, it made sense, inside our little Hillywood fandom, as a result of all of us love Physician Who … we love David Tennant and Michael Sheen … all of it coincides and Good Omens would slot in completely! Nonetheless, we couldn’t do something on the time, as a result of we have been in manufacturing for The Umbrella Academy Parody.

After that parody wrapped, we started fascinated about Good Omens once more. Nonetheless, the pandemic occurred and we have been unable to create a brand new parody throughout that point. We struggled slightly bit and thought, “Might this be the tip of The Hillywood Present?”

Had it not been for our Patrons, we could have needed to shut our doorways. Nonetheless, they actually supported us throughout that point, and with their assist we created a Past Hillywood Podcast, did some additional reside streams, and I began a Twitch channel! We have been attempting to remain related to our followers as a lot as attainable. They actually helped us get via 2020. 

In 2021 when issues have been easing off slightly bit, we started transferring. We stated, “What kind of parody can we try this’s not going to require a variety of completely different places, want 25 forged members just like the Suicide Squad parody or Physician Who Parody … we have to assume completely different.” I then pitched the total idea of Good Omens Parody to Hannah.

Hannah Hindi: That’s after we acquired severe! 

Hilly Hindi: We each felt actually assured about it! We’d been eager to create it, for some time, and we, lastly, stated, “Let’s do it!” 

There have been a few viewers that requested, “Why Good Omens? Hasn’t it been a couple of years since season 1 was launched?” And we thought, “We’re followers of the present! So, why not?” Come to search out out after filming Good Omens Parody, season 2 was introduced. We have been thrilled! So, I feel it’s necessary to belief your instincts! Belief your intestine and rejoice what you like, no matter what’s trending on the time.

Nerds & Past: I really feel like that’s at all times the very best feeling, too … if you’re already celebrating one thing that’s slightly older and it goes via a resurgence.

Hilly Hindi: Sure! It was simply by likelihood, and we had no concept that there was going to be a season 2, after we have been filming this.

The Hillywood Present/Adam Hyatt

Nerds & Past: And then you definately acquired to announce the discharge date of season 2 with the parody, and have Neil [Gaiman] concerned! When did Neil come into the image?

Hilly Hindi: Properly, that started after we put out the primary announcement for Good Omens Parody! I feel he retweeted it saying, “That is beautiful,” and wished us luck with our Patreon. We have been so excited and curious as to how he came upon! I do know Neil had tweeted about our Physician Who Parody two years after it got here out and his remark was one thing like, “I’m two years late on this, however that is good!” I ponder if he acknowledged the title of Hillywood after we introduced Good Omens Parody? 

Hannah Hindi: We did the donate-a-thons and thru all of it Neil would tweet about it, saying issues like, “Good luck!” It was such a blessing! We have been shocked. I don’t know if we’d’ve made it to our purpose with out the assistance of Neil Gaiman. He actually helped unfold the phrase.

Hilly Hindi: We met a variety of people that have been Good Omens/Neil Gaiman followers becoming a member of our Patreon to help us. It was very particular and really humbling that his followers got here to our facet and stated, “I don’t know a lot about Hillywood, however Neil Gaiman is supporting you, so I’m right here that can assist you, too!” It meant the world to us. Fortunately, we have been in a position to increase the funds with everybody’s assist! 

When Good Omens Parody was almost wrapped, we despatched Neil a message. It learn one thing alongside the strains of, “Would you be considering having a shock cameo in our upcoming Good Omens Parody?” We have been slightly nervous asking, however he responded, instantly, and stated, “I’m in!” We have been bouncing off the partitions!

Somewhat time later we noticed the announcement for season 2. It was ineffable! There was a little bit of a maintain as to when he might movie his cameo, since they have been simply starting to movie season 2, however he saved us stuffed in all the method. In the course of the wait we emailed our good friend, Justin, who is part of TheOneRing.web, since he’s labored with Amazon earlier than. We requested, “Do you assume Prime Video be considering tweeting or sharing our Good Omens Parody when it premieres?” He answered with, “Properly, I don’t know anybody within the Good Omens division, however right here’s an electronic mail to a publicist who works inside it!”

We then despatched out an electronic mail to the publicist with images from our Bookshop set, asking if Amazon could be considering probably displaying the parody some love, socially, after we launched it. She responded with a variety of pleasure and superb compliments! She needed to satisfy us over Zoom to be taught extra concerning the parody. After we spoke to her, she acquired the lowdown of the manufacturing and stated, “That is one thing that I feel could be actually cool to launch nearer to season 2!  We’d love to point out it some love!” We have been past thrilled!

Because the “Wait and see” was coming to an finish and filming for season 2 was wrapped, Neil reached out concerning the cameo thought and informed us, “I’m joyful to do something!” 

Hannah Hindi: We already had an ending with Neil in thoughts, however when he stated these explicit phrases … you can not inform somebody like Hilly, who is aware of no inventive bounds, one thing like that! *laughs*

Hilly Hindi: I shortly altered the script, and pitched the concept of Neil giving Crowley the basket that incorporates season 2, together with Maggie and Danny’s cameos! Initially, the basket revealed simply the “month of launch” for season 2, not the precise date.

Neil instantly wrote again together with his approval and was excited to shoot it. Earlier than we knew it, we have been on set with him, having the time of our lives! All the things labored out completely. He was an absolute delight to movie with.

Hannah Hindi: He was extraordinarily type to us! It felt like we have been working with a detailed good friend.

Hilly Hindi: We have been very humbled and honored. It was a dream having Neil Gaiman on our set. I by no means would’ve thought this might occur! We are able to’t sing his praises sufficient. He’s so loving, so type, and the way Hannah stated, it felt like we had identified him for a really very long time. He made us really feel very comfy.

Hannah Hindi: After that, we edited it — Hilly edits — and from there despatched it off the Amazon for a preview.

Hilly Hindi: After Amazon reviewed the edit, they got here again to us and stated, “Properly, we have now excellent news and dangerous information. The excellent news is that we confirmed it to everybody on the group they usually like it … a lot that they wish to provide the official date of launch for season 2, not simply the month!’”

That was superb! We have been floored and flabbergasted! However then got here the dangerous information … which was we needed to wait, just a bit bit longer, to launch it.

It had already been so lengthy for our followers, nonetheless, some have been already guessing that one thing was up. They have been saying, “There should be an thrilling purpose for the wait as a result of Hillywood by no means takes this lengthy!” Followers have been conscious there was a delay as a result of pandemic, however now there was an added mysterious delay that we couldn’t give away. It was a giant religion journey, on our behalf, to hold on, however we knew it was one thing particular for the followers.

Boy, did we be taught a lesson in trusting in God and having persistence within the ineffable plan. We thought we have been ones within the entrance seat driving, however we realized that we are literally those within the backseat, asking God, “Are we there but? Are we there but? Are we there but? Are we there but? Are we there but?” 

Nerds & Past: Anybody who follows Neil on social media will know what I’m speaking about, however my favourite factor is to scroll via his Tumblr weblog and simply learn the responses that he offers individuals asking him questions. And so with all the Good Omens season 2 pleasure occurring, he’s given lots of people the “wait and see,” “wait and see,” “wait and see” … it seems like that was the same theme on your course of right here as properly. “Wait and see” should simply embody the Good Omens season 2 expertise.

Hilly Hindi: We coined his well-known “Wait and see” phrase when our followers requested, “What’s occurring? What’s taking so lengthy?” We might reply with a cheeky, “Wait and See” in homage to Neil.  

Hannah Hindi: We are able to’t thank our followers sufficient for his or her persistence, fixed help, and perception that there was a purpose for the additional wait.

Nerds & Past: The parody was properly definitely worth the wait. Are there another Neil initiatives that you just’d wish to discover sooner or later?

Hilly Hindi: Oh … that’s one! I feel a Sandman Parody could be completely superb, however that present is sort of an enterprise. 

Hannah Hindi: That’s what I used to be pondering …

Hilly Hindi: Simply episode 1 of Sandman … these set designs are beautiful!

Nerds & Past: We’re big followers of Sandman round right here, so we’d love that. Are there any moments from the Good Omens parody that you just’re notably happy with by way of efficiency or enhancing?

Hilly Hindi: Enhancing is at all times enjoyable! We love going via all of the clips and seeing it come collectively. 

Hannah Hindi: It doesn’t take us too lengthy to get a primary edit finished, really. 

Hilly Hindi: What I’m happy with … properly clearly, primary was Neil Gaiman. That was simply an incredible expertise – it was like a fever dream. It didn’t really feel actual. 

Hannah Hindi: The opposite factor that we’re actually happy with is all the pyrotechnic scenes. It was a variety of planning, organizing, and ensuring that every part went completely for every explicit, shot. We solely had a lot propane that we might use, so it needed to go good. I’m actually happy with it. It was our first time working with hearth like that. 

I used to be additionally actually happy with how a lot Hilly gave for every shot throughout that shoot. She gave me 150% in her efficiency. I used to be nervous as a result of these pictures have been such a giant enterprise and one thing fully new for us. We acquired via it, although, and it turned out nice! 

Hilly Hindi: That was our first day of filming on the Good Omens parody, so we have been a bit nervous. Nonetheless, we had superb individuals with us. We had our common little crew of 5 individuals however for that individual night time, we had a bit extra crew on set, as a consequence of security … so a pyrotechnic group, the water truck, and so on.

A enjoyable truth is that Rene Diamante, who was our pyro director, already had expertise doing this kind of shoot, as a result of he was the precise pyro director on Billie Eilish’s music video! It was a blessing that we discovered him for this as a result of he already knew precisely what to do. We don’t have a Hollywood price range, however he graciously labored inside our little Hillywood price range. It was a lot enjoyable working with Rene!

Nerds & Past: In addition to Neil, who would your dream visitor look be? 

Hilly Hindi: Oh, wow! Dream visitor look … I feel it might be actually cool, particularly since we’ve finished so lots of her songs earlier than, to work with Girl Gaga. Undecided in what capability, however I feel Gaga, undoubtedly.

Nerds & Past: How might you not have enjoyable along with her? She looks like probably the most enjoyable individuals alive.

Hilly Hindi: She’s a masterpiece and I completely adore her! I’m slightly monster and we have now really been in a position to meet her. She loves our Gagaween Parody! It’s at all times so particular if you meet your heroes and they’re so loving! We’re followers for all times.

Nerds & Past: It’s at all times very good if you meet somebody they usually’re simply nearly as good as you have been hoping they’d be … possibly even slightly higher. 

What recommendation would it’s important to give to somebody contemplating beginning their very own channel or inventive endeavor? 

Hannah Hindi: Properly, to start with, congrats on wanting to start out one thing! For my part, I might say to start out small, and never anticipate every part to go excellent. This can be a studying expertise and it takes a very long time to know how every part features.

Additionally, consider one thing that’s inventive and new! It’s going to allow you to stand out! You need to have the ability to draw consideration to your self in a brand new and constructive method. 

Hilly Hindi: With this point in time, there’s a variety of worrying concerning the algorithm and what’s trending. I’ve found loads of movies which can be off matter of what’s trending and I really get pleasure from these movies extra as a result of it’s one thing new.

It is likely to be slightly scary to get on the market, particularly on the web, because you’re uncovered to so many feedback. Nonetheless, in case you are in love along with your idea and if it brings you happiness, simply do it. It doesn’t matter, simply put it on the market and have enjoyable! It needs to be fulfilling for you. Have faith in your self and who you might be, as a result of everybody deserves their very own world of creativity. It doesn’t must match anybody else’s creativity. Creativity is completely different. God gave us many various types of creativity. So I feel each individual needs to be celebrated, regardless if it’s becoming into the norm. 

Nerds & Past: I feel you each simply completely summed up how necessary it’s to be your self as a creator. Thanks a lot on your time at present, and I’ll maintain my fingers crossed for Sandman content material from Hillywood sooner or later.

Hilly Hindi: Oh my! Perhaps, sometime, sooner or later! And maybe we might work with Neil once more.

Hannah Hindi: In the event you ever get an opportunity to satisfy him, he’s every part and extra! The purest soul on the earth.

Nerds & Past: I’ve not met him, however I do have his autograph and generally I simply take a look at it, fortunately.

Hilly Hindi: He’s the very best! The quantity that Neil has supported Good Omens Parody … he has gone above and past! He and the Supernatural forged are golden! I miss Supernatural and people boys a lot. I don’t wish to, fully, shut that door, as I’m nonetheless eager for a Supernatural film. In the event that they’re on the lookout for somebody to tackle a Supernatural film, we’d, fortunately, volunteer! That might be dream.

Watch the Good Omens parody from The Hillywood Present beneath.