The second season of acclaimed Australian writer Boaz Stark’s steamy gay web series The Horizon will make its premiere on the Star Observer website later this month. The YouTube series tracks the trial-by-fire of innocent country boy Jake (Alistair Cooke, pictured), who treads the well worn path to Sydney’s gay scene – and as Cooke told the Star Observer, his character doesn’t get a break from the drama in season two.
“It is going to be intense. You will witness more heartbreak, drama and some massive changes, not to mention some hot new characters,” he said.
“With a much larger budget and some amazing cast and crew its going to be a whole new experience. I’m telling you now, you will become addicted to season two.”
That ‘much larger budget’ is of course relative to that of the first season – it’d still no doubt barely cover catering on some of the mainstream commercial productions Boaz Stark has worked on (the prolific screenwriter has written for Always Greener, Home and Away, Neighbours and Packed to the Rafters). Cooke explained there were good and bad sides to working on an independent, low budget production.
“Low budget productions can be a challenge – every penny counts when creating a production such as The Horizon. But it also has its advantages, such as becoming a family and having an amazing cast and crew that you learn to trust and work so well with,” he explained.
Thankfully, the show’s loyal audience – the final episode of season one has amassed an impressive 1.6 million views on YouTube to date – has been fundamental in getting season two off the ground, with fundraising events helping to bridge the gap.
“The fans… well, this wouldn’t be possible without their support, faith and encouragement. As a part of an amazing, committed team i think i can speak on behalf of everyone in saying thank you. Their help has made an enormous impact on the quality of this production,” said Cooke.
Stark has also enlisted the support of ACON, meaning that while the characters in The Horizon aren’t shy about a bit of bed-hopping – this is a gay soap opera, after all – safe sex messages are always at the forefront of the story.
Which is good news for the sweet, naive young Jake, who wants to see the best in everyone – even the less-than-loyal guy he met online.
“Without giving too much away, lets just say that Jake is going to learn a lot this season,” Cooke said.
“Jake may be a sweet, naive guy, but he will soon learn some valuable lessons that encourage him to evolve and grow rapidly. Season two will have you cheering for Jake every step of the way and love him even more.”