What drives a person to join an NGO? Fortunato is a young agronomist troublemaker who, for love, abandons his brilliant career as a drug pusher to try and become the perfect aid worker on an international cooperation project. He just didn’t consider how much his life would change forever.

What is the web series culture like in Italy?
The web series culture in Italy is vibrant and young. It is not very diverse in terms of cinematic genres,  as most of the series are either comedies, horror or supernatural stories. In a landscape where drama series are very rare, Status stands out as a unique series, inspired by American television series.

What was it like shooting your series in two different countries? Did it make the production process much longer and were there any big challenges?
Shooting in a foreign country where people speak a different language and the culture is so different was a big challenge. Our small budget and tight schedule made it much more difficult. We won a grant to shoot the series in May 2014 and had to screen the first two episodes in September that year during the Milano Film Festival. Although it seemed impossible, we made it!

What and who inspired your series?
Our main inspiration was a local NGO, Cefa and the stories of its volunteers. They agreed to let us depict the social aid workers as the heroes who saved people of underdeveloped countries, ans they helped us a great deal to unveil the contradictions and the different shades of the NGO world. Our protagonist though, is not a real aid worker. He is a clumsy and disillusioned drug dealer who tries to find redemption in the NGO world. The character was inspired by Breaking Bad’s Mr White, although our Fortunato follows a reverse path.

Is your series an ongoing project? What can we expect next?
We left the finale of season one very open because we were sure we wanted to keep telling Fortunato and Stoya’s story.

Is there a magic formula for a successful web series?
We don’t think there is a magic formula for web series. We think of web series as a TV series, just shorter. The audience needs passionate love, engaging character, exciting cliff hangers and unexpected twists in a web series, just as they would on TV. We believe a good story is a good story, no matter where you broadcast it.

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