Review Fix Exclusive: Rob Alicea Talks ‘Adulthood’ And More

Review Fix chats with “Adulthood” writer Rob Alicea, who discusses the show and why it’s important to not only him, but to anyone with a vision to create something special.

About Adulthood:

Created by multi-award-winning Latinx filmmaker Rob Alicea, ADULTHOOD is a coming-of-age comedy set in Queens, NY following four bachelors (Rob Alicea. Scott Rocco, Freddy Giorlando, and Zebedee Row) balancing work, love and, most recently, fatherhood when a twelve year-old shows up on their doorstep looking for xer father. But who of the four is it?

Heart-warming, hilarious, and often cringe-worthy in the best way, ADULTHOOD is a modern love letter to John Hughes and Kevin Smith, exploring both the joys and challenges that come with raising a gender non-conforming tween in today’s world, and celebrating the unconventional families that are created through friendships, happy mistakes, and shared experiences—the good, the bad, and the awkward. 

ADULTHOOD begins production early 2020. To learn more about ADULTHOOD check out their website: https://www.leavingnormalprod.com/adulthood, and follow them on social media. 

Review Fix: What was the inspiration for this show?

Rob Alicea: Two words: friendship and acceptance. As a man in his thirties I felt my own adulthood coming upon me with or without my permission. I was expected to be a grown up, but really didn’t know what that meant in real terms or life. But through it all, I knew I had my best friends who will always have my back, and that would never change.  I was inspired by the strong male friendships in shows like Entourage and Big Bang Theory, but, at the same time, wanted to create something for that guy who grew up in Queens who isn’t a Mensa genius or have access to a celebrity lifestyle. I simply wanted to make a show for and about guys I know and grew up with. As time went on, though, I started to feel like something was missing. We had made a successful indie pilot for ourselves, and it was just that: for ourselves. We wanted to do something bigger with and for the show and its community. It was then that my writing partner Scarlett, dishearted by the lack of LGBTQ youth representation in both the media and television, suggested we introduce a non-binary youth to our cast of characters to help bring awareness to the critical issues facing the community today.

Review Fix: How is it different from the other shows you’ve been a part of?

Alicea: I feel the main difference is just how personal it is. It’s the longest project I’ve been a part of that has had this many stops and starts, ups and downs, laughs and tears (and everything in between). Young in my career I would hear about certain filmmakers who spent years trying to get a particular project off the ground, and I couldn’t fathom how they refused to give up on it. I finally understand. 

Review Fix: What are your goals for it?

Alicea: It is our goal that Adulthood will both educate, entertain and move the needle forward in acceptance and care for the gender fluid and non-binary youth as we move toward the future. 

Review Fix: What have you learned about yourself through this production?

Alicea: I learned, more than anything, that what people have always said to/about me is true: I just don’t give up. If you have a story worth telling, then you owe it to yourself and those without a voice to tell that story. It’s what artists do, and nobody ever said it was going to be easy.

Review Fix: What’s the feeling like on set?

Alicea: For the pilot episode of Adulthood I wrote, directed, produced and starred, which basically means the entire process felt like one big blur. But, really, things move so fast and from the very second you step foot on-set you’re fighting time, so there’s not a whole lot of “stopping to smell the roses,” going on, but I always take a moment on any production to go off on my own during a break and just take in the set. I never not do that. As long as the team and I are having fun, we’ll continue to do it.

Review Fix: Any fun stories?

Alicea: There were many times when the show literally didn’t happen. From Freddy Giorlando getting into a car accident the day two of the shoot, to one of the actor’s houses going on fire, to losing actors and locations… that’s indie filmmaking for you… anything that can go wrong will probably go wrong. I’ll say one of the highlights for me, though, was the final scene we shot under the bridge in Astoria Park. I think it was then that the guys and I realized just how special this project is and all the setbacks we had to overcome just to get there. I’ll never forget it.

Review Fix: Who will enjoy it the most?

Alicea: The show is directed toward a pretty wide demographic with a little something for everyone, but, more than anything, if you grew up loving John Hughes and Kevin Smith, you’ll most likely enjoy this show.

Review Fix: What’s next?

Alicea: We’re currently in development and pre-production for season one setting up for a 2020 premiere.

Review Fix: Anything you want to add?

Alicea: If you’re reading this and feel a burning desire to be doing something… something scary or uncertain… DO IT. It’ll be the greatest thing you’ve ever done for your life, as well as for that unknown person you’ll one day come across that will be looking to YOU as an inspiration for someone who took the chance and risked it all to pursue their passions and dreams.

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About Patrick Hickey Jr. 12726 Articles
Patrick Hickey Jr. is the Founder, Editor-in-Chief, Master Jedi and Grand Pooh-bah of ReviewFix.com and is the author of the book, "The Minds Behind the Games: Interviews with Cult and Classic Video Game Developers," from leading academic and non-fiction publisher McFarland and Company. He is currently the Assistant Director of the Journalism Program at Kingsborough Community College and is a former News Editor at NBC Local Integrated Media and a National Video Games Writer at the late Examiner.com. He has also had articles and photos published in The New York Times, The New York Daily News, Complex and The Syracuse Post-Standard. Love him. Read him.

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