Bert V. Royal [Interview]

Photo by Vivien Killilea for WireImage

Hello Folks! And welcome back to another fine week of content for you all here at Trainwreck’d Society. Today we are speaking with an absolute gem of a human being, a brilliant writer, and just a damn kind soul overall. It’s Bert V. Royal Everyone! Bert is the person responsible for writing one of the best “coming of age” stories (or maybe more like “fuck, it sucks to be young sometimes” stories) that the entire world knows and love, and that would be the Emma Stone fronted film Easy A. I first caught this film when it was released at a very weird time in my life. I was 25 years old. Far removed from the inner workings of a modern setting of what goes on in high school, but not so far removed that the anxiety and pressure of being somebody, for some reason, that is supposed to comply with the world around them and just accept that people are shit some times and will believe whatever they want to believe in, and it was up to me take the matters at hand into my own hands, like a regular ole Olive over here!

And as it always seems to happen to be (we really get some of the best of the best around here, I have to say) learning more about the cat who penned such an amazing film made me realize that Bert V. Royal was not only special because of this one story that they had to tell. Bert was/is special because they are delightful person with a voice all of their own and is just an all around wonderful spirit. In my first reading of a smattering of digital words from this fine person, I quickly realized that we are so fortunate to have Royal on the site with us today. And we are so damn excited to continue to follow the career that will be the legacy of Bert Royal, and to have Bert on the site today. So Folks, please enjoy some wonderful words from the best in the business today! Enjoy!

 

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When did you first discover your passion for writing? Was it a deep-rooted passion you have always had, or did you just find yourself enveloped in the world of creating words for the screen and stage?

I think like any young wannabe writer, I wrote a novel at age 12.  It was called Slipping Into the Subconscious.  It was 14 pages – hand-written.  And 32 chapters.  I recently found it and it made absolutely no sense whatsoever.  But I was SO proud of it at the time.  Then many, many years later I wrote a play called George Glass (I was about 23) and it had similar themes and was also abysmally bad.  All signs pointed at ‘Bert Shouldn’t Be a Writer.’  But then I wrote another play at age 26 and people seemed to like it, so here I am.  But after that play I had to figure out how to be a good writer.  I’m still figuring it out.

According to the always reliable website Wikipedia, you made your move from Florida to NYC to work as an intern in the casting department, working on one of my favorite yet short-lived variety shows of all time, Chappelle’s Show. I’m curious as to how this gig may have influenced the rest of your career? Did you have any sort of takeaways or lessons learned that helped shape the career you have formed? Also, in specific regards to Chappelle’s Show, do you remember any specific sketches involving people you managed to get on the show? 

Well, I moved to New York specifically to work in casting and I was fortunate to work with incredibly talented and creative and wonderful people (and some shitheads for good measure) doing Broadway, Off-Broadway, regional theatre, TV and film.  I wouldn’t highlight Chappelle’s Show as giving me any sort of influence.  I thought it was kind of ridiculous.  But, dude – the auditioning process for that show was HIGHLY memorable.  We would see really amazing comedians along with some super bizarre people.  Pat, the casting director I worked for, was mostly busy with a network show called Hack – so her assistants and associates would do the auditions for Chappelle’s Show.  (We had NO idea it was gonna be this cultural phenomenon.)  We would get these really lewd scripts and think ‘this is NEVER gonna get aired,’ but we went through the motions and – lo and behold – the stuff would get broadcast AND everyone would be talking about it the next day.  One of the associates, Eli Dawson – who is this brilliant theatre casting director – came to work in the office and I think it was, like, his first day and he and I did the auditions for the ‘Blind Supremacist’ sketch.  We couldn’t stop laughing at the strange array of people who came in.  The whole time we were like: “What the hell is this show?  And who are these people?”  And then it becomes this huge deal.  So, I guess that was the lesson I learned: you NEVER know what’s gonna be a huge hit.  Kudos to Dave Chappelle.

The 2010 film you wrote entitled Easy A was an absolute gem, if I could say so myself, and I’m sure everyone else on earth has said the same. I can remember first checking out this film, and realizing it was SO MUCH better than I thought it was going to be looking at in on the surface. So much of that obviously has to do with the writing. With that in mind, I am curious to know how you developed this story? How much of the film was derived from personal experiences?

Thanks!  It’s a really good movie.  And I’m not saying that because I wrote it.  The stars all aligned and there were some tremendously talented people who crafted it into a success.  (That red-headed girl for one.)  Olive’s character is based on a number of fabulous young women I grew up with, who always stood up for the skinny, awkward, gay kid (me).  While none of it really happened, if you knew these girls you’d get what I’m talking about.  They were always defending me against the bullies and would’ve totally pretended to sleep with me, had I ever asked.  But I was a really prudish kid, so I wouldn’t have.  But also, I didn’t go to high school – so, a lot of it was wish-fulfillment.  I write a lot of high school stuff and I think it’s just me trying to fantasize about what high school would’ve been like.

 

 

I am curious to know what you thought of the final product that was your words put to the big screen with Easy A? Was Emma Stone the type of actress you were thinking about whilst writing the story? On that note, our friend Juliette Goglia played Olive from 8th grade, so I guess the same could be asked for her, as well as the rest of the cast. Basically, how close were the characters portrayed to your original story?

Unlike a lot of feature screenwriters’ experiences, the director was very cool about letting me come and be a part of the whole process.  I’m really grateful for that.  We had a great time making Easy A.  With every take, we ALL couldn’t wait to see what Emma was gonna do.  She just killed it.  Every shot, every take.  It was breathtaking watching this young actress BECOME this character.  We all knew we were watching a star-in-the-making.  And what a cool thing to witness!  And Juliette was fantastic!  I remember Emma running up to me on set saying: “Okay.  I LOVE the girl who’s playing younger me.”  She was awesome.  The whole cast was.  It’s weird to have that kind of phenomenal cast for a teen movie.  I never dreamed when I was writing it that we would have REAL actors.  I think in my mind, the whole thing would be shot with sock puppets.

In doing a bit of research on your incredible career thus far, I discovered the existence of a very intriguing play that you wrote entitled Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead. Would you mind telling our readers a bit about this play? And do you believe we will ever have the chance to see this play brought to film? Do you believe it would translate well? How would you want the film version to end up?

So, Dog Sees God was my first “thing.”  And it’s a really long story about how it all came to be – but I owe my entire career/life to that play.  I kinda wrote it as a joke.  It’s an unauthorized parody about the Peanuts in high school dealing with things that are way more intense than a shabby Christmas tree or getting no Valentine’s Day cards.  It’s been performed in all 50 states (that’s my big brag) and many countries around the world.  It’s my “baby.”  (Meaning that sometimes it makes me cringe, but I love it and never want to let it go.)  I’ve been trying for 15 years to get a film made, but people are a little scared of it – being that it’s an ‘unauthorized parody.’  It couldn’t really be a ‘studio film.’  It’s an indie.  And if anyone out there wants to fund it, we will gladly take your money and make the BEST TEEN MOVIE EVER.  Seriously, it could be amazing.  And I really do hope to one day see it happen.  But I also won’t let anyone make it without me at the helm.  It’s sweet though that – about three or four times a year – I get an email from some bright-eyed, bushy-tailed kid who did the play at their college and they’re convinced that they’re the right person to make the film version.  I get a lot of “I have a rich uncle and he said he’d pay for it.”  My response is always: “Okay, how rich is your uncle?  I need to see bank statements.”  Sigh…  One day…

 

 

Scrolling through your IMDb credits, I see you are listed as writing additional dialogue for the absolutely incredible Disney animated film Big Hero 6. I’m curious to know what sort of contributions you made to the film. Was it all the stuff that made me cry? If so, why would you do that to me (just kidding)?

I was GLORIOUSLY fired from Big Hero 6 by the Naked Emperor, John Lasseter, himself.  (I love that I can say that publicly now without gasps of disapproval.  He sucks. Really.)  SUPER sore subject – HYSTERICAL anecdote!  BUT if the scene that made you cry was Tadashi’s video on Baymax’s tummy, then YES.  I made you cry.  Because I’m pretty sure that was the only thing from my ‘nine months in hell’ that made it into the final movie.  I haven’t seen it.  I wasn’t invited to the premiere, despite being told as I was escorted out of the building that I would be.  I tried to watch it on an airplane, but after five minutes turned it off.  Can’t do it.

If you were handed, and given free-range to develop, the chance to write a biopic for any important figure in American history, who would you want to showcase?

This might be the best question ANYONE has EVER asked me.  And I stupidly don’t have an answer.  Is Rock Hudson an important figure in American history?  Probably not.  OOOO!  I know.  Stephen Sondheim.  I would love to write HIS story.  He’s my idol and he’s an important figure in American history and I would chop off several of my own body parts to write a movie about him.  I love and worship him in an unhealthy way.

What does the future hold for you? Anything coming up that you would like to plug to our readers?

I’m currently developing a lot of stuff.  Which means that you’ll probably get a chance to see something I wrote… in 2026.  Potentially fun stuff on the horizon, but a long way away.  Also, I need a job, soooo…  (I’m really good at manual labor…  But only the kind that requires no brain activity.)

What was the last thing that made you smile?

At the risk of sounding super corny, these questions made me smile.  I had a real shitfuck day and getting to talk about Dog Sees God, Easy A, and – okay – Big Hero 6 (to an extent) made me smile.  It made me remember why I got into this insane business in the first place.  Who knows?  Maybe I’ll turn Slipping Into the Subconscious into a feature…?  Kidding.  It REALLY sucked.

Sunday Matinee: The Long Shadow [Film]

 

“Director Frances Causey and Producer Sally Holst, both privileged daughters of the South, were haunted by their families’ slave-owning pasts. They grew up in a time when white superiority was rarely questioned, and challenging this norm was often met with deadly consequences. Rejectingthe oft-told romanticized version of early U.S. history, they embarked on a journey of hidden truths and the untold stories of how America – driven by the South’s powerful political influence – steadily, deliberately and with great stealth,  established white privilege in our institutions, laws, culture and economy. From New Orleans to Virginia, Mississippi and Canada, they traveled the roads of oppression, suppression, and even hope to reveal the direct link from early slavery, Jim Crow and strong-arm Southern politics to the current racial strife and division we face today.” Big Time PR

 

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Hello Folks! I have a wonderful film to share with you all today, and it is one that I feel as though the world truly needs to see. Just this morning, I logged into the dumpster fire of a website that is Twitter.com, and learned that a hashtag that is trending today is #MyWhitePrivilege. And, as to be expected in the modern American climate, a whole lot of outrage has occurred. It was pure coincidence that I had this film scheduled to be showcased on this day almost a month ago, and then I woke up to see this thing trending.

The idea behind White Privilege is one that so many don’t seem to understand. But, with a simple viewing of a film like The Long Shadow, I feel as though it could be perfectly explained. Our nation was one founded on complete injustice because it was the easiest route to go. It wasn’t correct, it was disgusting, but it is the solid truth behind the matter. It’s just as the quote on the poster says: “When you are accustomed to privilege, equality feels like oppression”. And while I am hesitant to provide any sort of accolade to director Frances Causey and producer Sally Holst for putting this amazing film together in fear of presenting another version of a “white savior” that is also a very problematic scenario that is often times presented in the world of cinema, I do have to say that I feel as though their project didn’t convey that fearful idealism of “but, we’re the good whites” that could have very easily been conveyed. Instead, they created an open and honest work of art that can create a real discussion about the terrors that occurred in an extremely close proximity to the world they live in. In fact, it was the world they lived in. In fact, we need more people like Causey and Holst. Those who recognize their privilege, and make it a way of life for themselves to acknowledge the complete and utter bullshit that has been brought upon an entire race of people who never chose to come to this country. We forced them here, and we have continued to shit on them ever since.

And while the film justifiably speaks mostly of the the sufferings that occurred in the southern region of the United States of America, I feel as though it is important to point out that the rest of the country is not also to blame. Even the far west states in which i was raised are not immune to the criticism of being blatantly racist and complacent in some really shitty behavior. It may be behavior that is showcased later in the film because of the timeline, but it is shitty behavior nonetheless. I grew up a shitty lumber town in the Pacific Northwest, just north of one of the most liberal cities in the country (Portlandia) and I still knew a sense of hatred that was undeniably ridiculous. I won’t spend too much time on this, but I just felt that this was a point that needed to be made. If you are watching this film from the Bay Area, don’t think you are exhumed from being a part of the problem.

Also, before anyone has anything to say about the fact that this film may closely resemble a certain documentary that is also very compelling and happens to be available on Netflix, please shut that shit down right now. I for one am very happy that this idea is being brought up on multiple occasions. This is a real life massacre of humanity that needs to be discussed as often as possible. When I was a kid, I spent my own money buying 6 different documentaries about Tupac Shakur that all pretty much said the same thing. And not to knock Tupac, but I honestly wish that there were as many documentaries about the fact that black oppression did not end when slavery did that can be readily named off in my white privileged head than there are Tupac docs. That being said, The Long Shadow is truly unique in the way that it presents itself, and is an all around well-produced and stylized documentary that every one should see. This is a film that needs to be shown in schools. Bee it Elementary, Middle School, College, and beyond, this is a brilliant demonstration of humanity at its finest that should be taught to the world.

 

 

The Long Shadow is available now on VOD.

 

 

 


<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/285020724″>THE LONG SHADOW short trailer</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/user5572442″>Jed Riffe</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

Saturday Special: Division 19 [Film]

 

“In the future, prisons have been turned into online portals where paying subscribers get to vote on what felons eat, watch, wear and who they fight. Panopticon TV is so successful it is about to be rolled out to a whole new town. When the world’s most downloaded felon escapes, the authorities set a trap to reel him in. The bait is his little brother who has so far managed to avoid detection.” – Uncork’d Entertainment

 

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Division 19 is a highly stylized film that takes place in yet another Orwellian or Harry Turtledove live setting, but of course has it’s own twist when considering the most recent political and human climate in which we are currently living in. The idea within the story that the an experiment in control is first conducted on the enslaved of a nation, before releasing the idea onto the common public is a commonplace, yet god damned frightening, idea that we have seen time and time before. But I dare say that Division 19 hits this idea in a truly unique fashion with a smattering of suspense and is overall an incredibly smart thriller and is brilliant production that stands out in its own right. The film touches less than delicately on the idea that we are constantly de-valuing human life as a whole, so much so that true chaos is becoming more and more likely to be a real problem that we all have to admit to being destructive and demoralizing. The idea that we may pay money to control a human life who is trapped in a jail cell seems so far fetched on the surface. But, really think about it. The concept may not be as foreign as you would once think. While the situations are literal within the film, the actual message behind what is happening within Division 19 is highly figurative, and truly original. I can not recommend this film to you all enough, especially if you are dystopia nut who is looking for the next best visual representation of what could happen if we continue down the path we are on.

 

 

Division 19 was derived from the brilliant mind of Suzie Halewood, who absolutely nailed it visually, and wrote and even more impressive story to know and love. And the cast of the film is absolutely top notch, which happens to include our friend of TWS, Will Rothhaar, as well as legendary screen actor Clarke Peters of The Wire and Treme acclaim. Other notable figures within the cast has to be the always incredible Alison Doody. The list goes on and on. Toby Hemingway, Mandy‘s Linus Roache, just so many greats to be seen. Overall, it is an incredible story that is as visually stimulating as it is just an overall enthralling concept. And with a wide selection of wonderful performances to enjoy, there really is just so damn much to love here.

 

Division 19 will be in theaters on April 5th at the following theaters, as well as on VOD:

– LA: Laemmle Music Hall
– Chicago: AMC South Barrington 24
– Atlanta: AMC Southlake Pavilion 24
– Dallas: AMC Grapevine Mills 30
– Houston: AMC Gulf Pointe 30
– Cleveland: Tower City Cinemas
– San Francisco: AMC Deer Valley Stadium 16
– Philadelphia: PFS Roxy Theater
– Phoenix: AMC Arizona Center 24
– Detroit: AMC Fairlane 21

 

Check out the trailer for Division 19 right here:

 

Zak Toscani [Interview]

Hello Folks! We have an incredible interview for you all today, which actually happens to tie in with the interview we had go live on Wednesday with the great comedian Mike Mulloy. Today’s guest is another extremely talented stand up comedian and writer, the great Zak Toscani! Zak is one of the cofounders of the previously (and soon to be again) mentioned L.A. based stand up shows that I am dying to one day trek the 10,000 miles across and ocean and an entire country to one day check out that is known as Faded. He is also a frequent guest on the incredible podcast we all now and love known as All Fantasy Everything, which is hosted by Ian Karmel and our dear friends of the site, Sean Jordan and David Gborie. Zak has appeared on AFE numerous times, but if you were looking to get a quick glimpse into the (somewhat insane) mind of one Mr. Toscani, I can not recommend enough that you go back and listen to Episode 54 entitled “What To Do with a Billion Dollars”. Zak’s picks on this episode are absolutely incredible, and have been lodged in my brain since I heard it, almost 2 1/2 years ago.
Zak is also a terrific comedian who regularly performs in the Los Angeles area, as well as all across the country. He is an incredible human being with a so many wonderful stories to to tell the world. And we are so happy that he was able to carve some time out of his schedule to share a few words with us here today! If you are in the L.A. area, tonight is the night you should head to Blue Rooster Art Supply to check out what I feel like has to be the greatest comedy showcase of all time. The show happens every Friday, and you need to find your way there!
So Folks, please enjoy some incredible words from the even more incredible comedian that is the great Zak Toscani! Enjoy!
When did you first discover your passion for the world of stand up comedy? Was it something you that you always knew you wanted to do? Or did you happen to find yourself in this world one day?

I cant claim to be a lifelong fan of stand-up comedy. A common story you’ll hear is a comic growing up watching stand-ups late at night with their parents. That wasn’t my experience. I was certainly aware of stand-up but my early affinity for comedy came from watching films with my family. My entire family introduced me to a wide variety of comedic heroes. It wasn’t planned or organized, but as it turns out a lot of my family found comedy to be a fundamental part of life. My mom always tells me “sometimes if you dont laugh, you’ll cry.”

My father and I watched a lot of Steve Martin, Bill Murray, and John Candy. My mother and I shared a love of Diane Keaton, Lily Tomlin, and Woody Allen. My stepdad blew my mind when he showed me Coming To America, Bull Durham, and Wrongfully Accused. And I have a distinct memory of actually pissing my pants laughing at Happy Gilmore with my Uncle David.

I never thought about stand-up until around senior year of high school. My best friend at the time John Walters, decided on a whim to start writing jokes and trying them out at the local comedy club’s open mic (Go Bananas – in Cincy). I was blown away, I had never considered that you could just START doing something like that. I believe thats a common trait amongst most of us, sometimes it takes someone trying to do something out of the ordinary to remove the mystery of it. I tried my best to help him write jokes, but neither of us knew what we were doing. After a few odd gigs he booked – including many places we needed to be chaperoned, since we were still underage – he hung it up and we continued being teenagers. But that short time did plant a seed within me, I can’t say for certain but I dont know that I would be performing right now if it wasnt for my friend John.

A few years later I was on a spiritual retreat that my older sister begged me to do with her at Ohio University. During the retreat, the chair was opened to any and all to talk about whatever. Eventually I worked up enough guts to sit in the chair and say some things that I thought were funny. I started with two Steven Wright jokes to set the tone and then talked about my sister and I. Not technically an actual stand-up set, and the fact that I did someone else’s jokes is not a great look. But, if nothing else it removed a little doubt inside of me and I was able to live in that fantasy of promise for a few years.

About 5 years later I was moving from Ohio to Portland. I desperately wanted out of Ohio and Cincinnati especially. Its a great town and a lot of friends still live there, but I felt stuck there. The most common question you’ll hear if you are from AND still live in Cincinnati is “what high school did you go to?” You feel as though you are locked in amber at 17, who you are then and there becomes your entire identity going forward.

I moved my sister to Oregon for law school and during the weekend met with a few friends who had been living in Portland for about a year. It only took a weekend for me to pull the trigger on moving to the PNW. No longer tethered to my high school, my subdivision, my city opened up all new possibilities for me. Around this time, a friend of mine from Ohio called me to tell me he started stand-up. After that call I went to the Helium Open Mic in Portland for 3 straight weeks and just watched the show. I can still remember seeing baby Ian Karmel, Sean Jordan, and Shane Torres each of those weeks. I saw people who seemed 1,000x’s funnier than me (aforementioned), saw some people I categorized as “around me”, and saw comics that I knew I was funnier than. Not the best way to view it, but when you dont know anything delusion is the only source of fuel you have. I eventually signed up, did 3 minutes which were are still are a complete blur. But a positive blur. I havent stopped since.

Photo by “Super Producer” Marissa (@marsmel), taken at Faded

What was your very first paid gig as a performer? And was there anything thing taken from that experience that continues to influence your work to this day?

My first paid gig was a hosting gig. I was hosting for Don Frost’s headlining show at the Wooden Chicken in Gresham, OR that he would do annually. Shane Torres was the feature and the one who recommended me to Don. Either Shane saw something in me pretty early on, or he just needed someone with a car. It was a good sum of money at the time, $50.I can’t ever forget that night. It was the night of the then undefeated Oregon Ducks vs Stanford on the last game of the season. I don’t watch college sports but you couldn’t avoid knowing about the game, as the entire population of the Wooden Chicken were glued to the game. If Oregon wins they’ll play for the National Championship. They lose. They lose at the very end. The show starts immediately afterwards. No joke. Game hits 0 seconds, the tv’s are turned off, and there I am walking in front of what are for sure 150 pissed off people. I did know better than to ask “how we all doin tonight?” Anyways, I think they wanted to be nice so they were patient during my forever seeming ten-minutes-of-jokes-im-not-sure-were-jokes and then I introduced Shane. There was supposed to be a football collectables auction happening after the show, and I remember after a few minutes Shane spotted the auction items and started riffing on how bad they were, how everyone was getting swindled, and even started joking about the talent who had signed the items. They loved it, and they loved him instantly. He got the most out of those people in that situation. I’ll never forget it. I’m not often kind to myself, but one thing I will say is that I have always been happy that when I experience a moment like that, I make a note of it, and apply it to myself.

More than anything starting comedy in Portland, surrounded by the staggering amount of talented people all of whom seemed to not only have a strong self of self but also actively tried to make it a better community for the younger comics (myself). I tried to soak in all I could.

My first set (unpaid) was at Whitney Streed’s Weekly Reoccurring Comedy Night at the Tonic Lounge. It was the first show I had been booked on. Whitney always made it a point to give young comics their first shot at a show. I’ll always love Whitney for that. During my set, the power went off, and to my amazement I did not freeze or just go on telling my jokes like a broken teleprompter. I made a few self depricating remarks about the timing of the blackout before transitioning back to my prepared material. Not a monumental step I understand, but before you are in that kind of situation you don’t know how you will react. The first time I did a mic I honestly put my chances of fainting at 50%. So the fact I didnt panic and addressed the situation was my first indication that maybe I should be doing this. It’s something I would have never thought possible of myself.

Like some of your friends and our past guests here, Sean Jordan and Shane Torres, you made your way to my beloved homeland of the Pacific Northwest. Was the move prompted for comedy? What made you decide to make the move to PDX? And how was your experience working in the city during this time?

Portland will always be very dear to me. I have three hometowns, I was born and lived most of my life in Cincinnati, OH. I lived in Hawaii from about 5th grade to sophmore year of high school. And Portland was the first place I moved to on my own. It was the first place I performed at, my comedy hometown. I dont remember being scared or really that nervous. I was very much looking forward to the opportunity to see who I was and what I wanted to do.I started stand-up a few months later. Met people who would become my best friends. People I am certain I will know for the rest of my life. And because Portland isn’t LA or NYC I was able to really be patient with stand-up. I was relatively a late starter at 26, there were comics in the scene that started at like 15 (Phil Schallberger). There was a plethora of stage time thanks to the comics before me who helped create and cultivate the scene. There were at least two shows and a mic happening every night of the week. I was allowed to fail over and over again. The scene as a whole was so robust, no comic was the same, that kind of freed everyone up to be exactly the comic they wanted to be.

For the next 7 years I worked a day job at a law firm and lived stand up the rest of the time. It really transformed my life, like objectively, it will take over your life. When friends or family visited me in Portland, they’d ask “where should we eat?” “what should we see?” and I had to be honest and tell them that the only places I knew were venues where comedy happens or bars we go to after the comedy show. I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

The cult-like following that has developed around the hit podcast All Fantasy Everything is astonishing and wonderful, I have to say. And much like some previously mentioned guests and others (David Gborie, Amy Miller, Matt Braunger, etc.) you have engrained yourself into this world quite nicely. I heard you even received tennis gear back in Ohio? With that, I am curious to know what you believe it is about this show that has had such a great impact on you? What is different from this project from the plethora of podcasts that are out there?

All Fantasy Everything has been huge for me simply in that it gives me a much broader audience in which to showcase myself. I can never thank Ian, Sean, and David enough for that. Since the podcast started I have been recognized in public, which is still baffling to me. I’ve been able to sell out stand-up shows. And have been gifted tennis items which is maybe the coolest thing thats happened to me. The fans are amazing and so supportive.

I am not smart enough to be able to pinpoint all the reasons why AFE has made such an impact so quickly, but I have a few insights. Like any creative endeavor there is the order and the chaos. From the order perspective, the podcast’s theme of fantasy drafting anything and everything in life is such an amazing idea, just on paper its a home run. It’s an idea that as soon as you hear it you hate that you didnt think of it! I remember Ian talking about his idea for the podcast back when he lived in Portland. I’m sure the early incarnation would have been excellent as well, but that gets me to the chaos part. From the chaos perspective, the alchemy and chemistry that Ian, David, and Sean have together is undeniable and cant be replicated. Again I am speaking from someone on the inside. But, its a vibe and an energy that I haven’t seen anywhere else. It’s not just that they are friends, or that they hang out together, or are all great comics. It’s like the tri-force in Zelda, those pieces just fit perfectly. It’s been a joy and a pleasure to witness.

(L to R) Zak Toscani, David Gborie, Mike Mulloy, Sean Jordan. Photo by Ed Ballart, taken at Faded

I have closely followed your weekly show in L.A. known as Faded, sadly from a far. It sounds spectacular. For those of us who reside a bit too far, possibly with an entire ocean in between, what can you tell us about this show? What are we missing out on?

Faded is a weekly stand-up show I run along with David Gborie, Sean Jordan, and Mike Mulloy. It’s every Friday, 7:30pm at Blue Rooster Art Supplies in Los Angeles. I’ve known Sean since I moved to Portland. David and Mike are friends I made here in LA. We kind of all met during the time we were writing Ian’s Comedy Central pilot. Since that experience we always discussed working together. As we all performed around town, we kind of noticed the same thing. While there are great standup shows in LA there were also way more that were just kind of existing.

Not too belittle anyone else, but the way we saw it, if you’re going to start a show you have the responsibility to make it great. We didnt want another mic stand in the middle of a dive bar. We kept talking about it for months. Mike runs another show in LA called On Deck, which was previously at Meltdown Comics. Once that place closed, he was on the look for a new venue. On Deck eventually found a new home at Blue Rooster. It’s in a separate building out back from the arts store. Which was used primarily for painting classes and extra storage. It’s a giant open room, with a built in bar, a bathroom, and enough space for about 100 chairs. It was and is perfect. Before Mike even had the first On Deck there he had major plans for the space.

Shortly after Faded was born. We had a venue that would be completely ours for the duration of the show. We wouldn’t have to fight bar noise. No people wandering in accidentally. Everyone who would be there, would be there for comedy, nothing else. The possibilities of what the show could be or how it would look was endless.

We decided to stand ourselves and Faded out in a few ways. One, we would book mostly 15 minute spots. Usually in LA you’ll get around 7 minutes at most shows. Its not nothing, but we all felt like in a city plush with so many amazing voices why not give them more time?

Second, we all wouldn’t be doing spots on every show. The way we see it, Faded is for the other comics and the crowds. We of course host and do spots at times, but we didnt want to bog the show down with the same 4 people every week. Plus, no one would be able to turn over a new 15 minutes of material every week.

Third, we wanted to charge for the show. Not only because we pay rent each week for use of the space, but we didnt want to undervalue ourselves. $10 isn’t going to break the bank for anyone, especially in LA. And we’re of the belief that when audiences pay money to attend a show they in turn become more invested in the show. And thats been the case thus far with Faded. Because of the success of AFE and our reputations as comics we knew that we could get people in seats.

Fourth, we wanted to make it a fun fucking show. It’s not a mind blowing strategy. We wanted people leaving the show to be blown away. Not just at the comics, but the presentation and the thought put into every part. We’ve constantly experimented with almost every aspect of the venue and how we present the show. Every week we get better. We are constantly tweaking and not staying stagnant. I think – that- more than anything is the biggest reason for our success.

Since the first show in October we’ve been growing and growing. It’s truly been life changing for me. My experience in LA has been peaks and valleys, and I was truly getting a little lost in the ocean of life here. Having Faded every single Friday has been the highlight of my week and a place I can put my creative energy into. It’s so gratifying even on the weeks I am not doing a set.

If you find yourself in LA come visit us and see why we run the best show in town.

What does the future hold for you? Anything you would like to share with our readers?

I have no idea what the future holds for me, Zak Toscani. I love stand-up as much as I ever have and I feel like it will always be part of my life. I think it’s made me a better person. In terms of goals, I’m hoping I get the chance to perform on Conan, I’ve been in the process of getting a set on the show and it’s exactly what I said a “process”. I’ve always wanted the first thing I do on TV to be standup. So it’s important to me to make that happen.

Although, to be perfectly honest with you it’s very rare a late night set will really change anything for your life as a comic these days. You may get a few more offers to headline comedy clubs, which is no small event, but mostly it’s more of a feather in your cap within the comedy/industry. It introduces you to the world, so to speak. And gives you a logo to put on show flyers.

The interesting thing is that I don’t think the industry/nor the comedy clubs have caught on that podcasts are kind of the new late night. I know very funny comics who have done handfuls of late night sets but still find trouble getting tickets sold, whereas, if you have/or in my case/ happen to be a guest on a podcast with a big following those listeners will buy tickets to come see you. It’s a very real thing and it makes sense.

Typically on late night your set is 5-7minutes and its heavily audited by the booker of said show. It’s an important process but ultimately you feel as though its maybe not a complete or full version of who you are as a comic. Usually the perceived flaws or imperfections in someones act that are ironed out by the late night submission process can leave the set feeling flat and too studied. For podcasts, its so much different. Listeners hear you for hours, being exactly who you are, and they feel connected. That’s why they’ll drive 5 hours to see you, to buy a shirt or a poster. They feel invested in your career.

I’ve got a few different irons in the fire. Been kicking around starting my own podcast. Currently the idea is to tell stories from my life ala The Tobolowski Files. Something well thought out, written, and produced. Though this idea keeps feeling like the best idea and the worst depending on the day.

I REALLY am trying to bridge some gap between tennis and comedy, even if that bridge can only fit myself. To my knowledge I am maybe the only comedian trying to insert myself in the tennis world, so I’m hoping the lack of competition works to my advantage. Whether its a show on The Tennis Channel or writing a project involving tennis, sure enough I’m going to try all avenues.
TV and movies would be a dream. Writing for both is something I’ve been working on and always keep bubbling in the back of my head. I try not to put too much pressure on myself and just focus on doing one good thing at a time.
What was the last thing that made you smile?

The last thing that made me smile was when I was writing about Faded. It sounds corny but I love what we’re doing and to be part of it is completely my pleasure.

 

Mike Mulloy [Interview]

 

Happy Wednesday Everyone! I’ll be damned if we don’t have a fantastic comedian to showcase today. This is a guy that I have admired from a far for quite some time, thanks to a string of events that have led me down a comedy rabbit hole over the last 5 years or so. It all started about 4 years ago when I discovered a little thing called a “podcast”, which has allowed a displaced American comedy fan the opportunity to listen to the modern philosophers of our era that are comedians, just talk about shit. Somewhere along the way, I discovered a brilliant comedian named Sean Jordan, who informed me on this very site about an up and coming podcast he was regularly appearing on entitled “All Fantasy Everything”….and it truly has rocked my fucking simple world since. And today’s guest is a man who is heavily engrained in this world that we should all know and love. It’s motherfuckin’ Mike Mulloy, Y’all!!

Mike is a salt of the earth, no holds barred comic with a brilliant outlook on everything imaginable. Often referred to as “enemy of the podcast”, both on and off mic over at “All Fantasy Everything”, it is his brilliantly abrasive and fuck it all comedic style that is so damn intriguing. And while the digital stain on humanity that Twitter probably isn’t the best product to judge someone’s talent within, I will say that if you are not following @fakemikemulloy on Twitter, you are missing the fuck out people. Mulloy’s take on anything you can imagine is destined to be hilarious, and one of the few reasons I continue to monitor the chaos that ensues on that damn website.

In more recent months, Mike Mulloy has teamed up with 3 other established members of the “All Family Everything” to create what sounds to be like the best comedy show in the Los Angeles area, which is called Faded. He created the show alongside the aforementioned Sean Jordan, fellow past guest David Gborie, and possible future guest Zak Toscani (and by possible, I mean definite. Like, this Friday). The show takes place at Blue Rooster Art Supply every Friday, and If I weren’t literally ten thousand miles away, I would be there every fucking weekend. The always have the best guests, including our dear friend and past guest Christi Chiello, and just a grip of comedians who I am dying to have on the site as well, including The Lucas Brothers, Bri Pruett, Kenny DeForest, Kyle Kinane, Roman Rivas II, Sam Jay, and literally dozens more. Seriously Folks, if you aren’t at Blue Rooster each and every Friday whilst living in the L.A. area, what the fuck is your problem?

Mulloy also has another damn fine and truly unique show entitled On Deck Comedy, which we will discuss in great detail below, which is insanely unique and a testament to the brilliant mind of Mike Mulloy. The show also occurs at Blue Rooster Art Supply, check out details HERE. Past guests have included hilarious folks like our very dear friends Amy Miller & Lydia Popovich, as well as wonderful comedians like Courtney Karwal, Rhea Butcher, Chris Cubas, Megain Gailey, and so many more! We will get into it!

So let’s get right into it, shall we? Please enjoy some wonderful words from the absolutely brilliant Mike Mulloy! Enjoy!

 

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Photo by Ed Ballart. Taken at Faded.

 

When did you discover that you were a hilarious human being, and that you were destined to make people laugh for a living?

I’ve just always been someone who’s loved to laugh.  I think my love of comedy came more from liking to laugh than it did from making others laugh.  I love to make others laugh, but I also just like thinking about the things that make me laugh.  Just thinking about weird, dumb shit has always been something I’ve enjoyed.  That’s really the basis of all my comedy.  This made me laugh.  I hope it makes you laugh, but at the end of the day it makes me laugh.  When a joke or a premise stops making me laugh, I usually stop doing it because an audience can tell when you’re not having fun with a bit anymore.

Though I have not been fortunate enough to catch On Deck live, the concept of it seems hilarious, and you always seem to have very funny people appearing on the show. Can you tell us how you came up with the idea of this show? And for our readers who may be unaware, what exactly is On Deck Comedy?

Jamel Johnson, one of my cohosts, had just moved to LA and I really wanted to work with him.  He’s honestly one of the funniest mother fuckers on a planet and I can’t understand how the town isn’t all over his dick.  Sometimes spending so much time with him makes me forget how damn funny he is.  But when he got to town I just knew I had to come up with something for us to work on.  We were at my place just chilling and drinking and smoking and trying to come up with what our show was gonna be and On Deck was what came from it.  I couldn’t even explain the show when we first came up with it.  In fact, we barely knew what it was during our first show.  We almost bailed on the whole concept in the first show because the comics were confused, but luckily the first team was Dan St Germain, Debra DiGiovanni and Matt Donaher, all fantastic comics, who insisted they figure it out.  And they did.  They did and they killed it and then told me how much fun they had and I knew it was something we had to stick with.

Basically the show is two teams of three comedians, doing jokes for 27 minutes as a team (Like the 27 outs in baseball).  Each jokes we give a single, double, triple or home run (with the rare out, that’s only happened twice in the nearly 3 years we’ve been doing this) and the team with the most runs wins.  It’s silly and it’s fun and you get to see comics working together which a. you rarely see b. you’d rarely see the comics we group together working together.  It’s just fun and different.

When we set out to build the show, I wanted something different. I was on so many show cases where the host would bring me on and just leave the room.  My thinking was “how can you expect these people in the audience to give a shit about my set when you, the person who booked me, doesn’t even care?”  So I wanted to make something that forced me as the host to sit there and watch the comics I booked.  I wanted something where if the audience was ever in doubt about how they should be reacting to a joke, they can look to us at the table and see we’re laughing.  It’s really just about putting comics over and making them seem important.

I also know, but again haven’t had the privilege of witnessing in person as I am about 10,000 physical miles away from L.A., that you have another show features our friends, past guests David Gborie and Sean Jordan, as well as future guest Zak Toscani. Can you tell us a bit about this show and why anyone who lives in the Los Angeles area is a mark ass hater for not attending yet? What are they/we missing out on?

Honestly, I can’t even explain Faded, it’s just this wild positive vibe.  Stand up comedy can be scary as an audience member for someone that doesn’t attend shows regularly.  A lot of times people think the comics are gonna fuck with them and that’s really not what we’re going for.  We just want to put comics who we love in front of them and show they why we love them.  But the show is really becoming a hang out for so many people, comics and audience members alike.  There’s some weeks that we have comics come hang and I look in the back of the room and think “Shit, we have been comics just hanging out here than some other shows have booked tonight”.  We have people who come every week.  We have people who come to Faded one night and come to On Deck the very next night.  We have people who FLY IN just to experience Faded.  This show has existed for 17 weeks, that’s insane that people are that committed to it this early in the process, but it’s by design.  That’s exactly what we wanted to create.  Los Angeles is a scary place.  It’s really hard to make friends here that aren’t based around “what you’re here for”.  But in 17 weeks we’ve had people just coming and meeting up with the friends that they’ve made at the show which is really insane to think about.  We’re just trying to build a community.  The fact that I get to do it with my best friends is really a bonus.

 

Photo by TWS friend, John Michael Bond, taken at Faded.

Holy Shit, Folks. I am beyond excited to share

You have managed to engrain yourself in the very charismatic and cult-for-good-dudes podcast that happens to also feature the solid performers mentioned previously, David Gborie and Sean Jordan, that is known as All Fantasy Everything. This podcast introduced me to your comedic talents, and I’m sure others as well. With that in mind, I am curious to know what has been your favorite pick that you have made in your multiple appearances on the show?

Probably the “Create a movie one”, cuz it was the only one that I really prepared for and thought out thoroughly.  A cast of all black women and then Elton John as the villain caught people off guard but then it all made sense to them when I painted the whole picture.

While I know it is very cool to shit on the disease that is the website Twitter, I have to admit that it is because of folks like you that I keep coming back to it. You are definitely one of the best “Twitter Follows” I have ever encountered. And I am curious to know just how much effort you put into Tweets? And have you managed to have something from Twitter actually make it into your stand up? Or is it a completely separate animal? 

I’ve scaled back on Twitter considerably lately because I think it’s melting my brain some days, but a lot of times I’ll test a concept on there to see if what I think is funny is funny to anyone but me.  If something really clicks, then I might look into expanding on it in my stand up, but most of what I do on Twitter is just fucking with people. Whether it’s bad people who I think need to be brought down a peg or silly traps that I set for unsuspecting people to get caught in.  As dumb as Twitter is, I probably owe everything I have to it.  Ian found me on Twitter.  He really didn’t know me that well, we’d done one or two shows together, but when he was writing a sports comedy for Comedy Central, I was one of the people he reached out to because he liked my sports tweets.  Without that, who knows if I would have become as close with him, Sean, David and Zak, but I really don’t know what I’d be doing if I didn’t have those guys in my life now.

What does the future hold for you? Anything you would like to plug to our readers?

Honestly, who knows?  I think about my career a lot differently than I did when I was starting out, even differently than I did when I first got to LA.  I spend less time thinking about how to get into doors and more time focusing on just building my own thing.  The things I’m given can be taken away, the things I build myself really can’t. So I don’t really want to be at the mercy of the decision makers in this business, because most of them don’t know their asshole from a hole in the ground. I’m gonna build my own audience and figure out how I can deliver things to them myself instead of finding someone else to give me a platform to their audience.  My audience really does a lot of the work for me, because most of them have been watching me do this shit for a while and they want to see me succeed.  If I just grow my base, I’ll be fine.

Nothing really to plug, just Faded and On Deck.  Keep an eye on the Blue Rooster as a whole because I’m basically turning that into my own personal comedy club house.  We did a live All Fantasy Everything there this weekend, sold out in under a day and was just an amazing experience.  Really hoping we do some more of those and bring some other fun shows into the space.

What was the last thing that made you smile?

I’ve pretty much been smiling all weekend.  It’s really cool seeing something you created is turning into the vision you first had for it.  I feel pretty unstoppable at the moment and that feeling makes it hard not to.  Just knowing that it makes my enemies sick helps too.

 

 

 

Raynold Gideon [Interview]

This is Kandi & Bear. They allow today’s guest to live with them. They are much younger and a whole lot better looking than Raynold Gideon, according to today’s guest. We cannot confirm this, but would probably guess it to be true based on the adorableness of Kandi and Bear.

 

Welcome back Folks to another very exciting week here at Trainwreck’d Society. In fact, this is a week that I am EXTREMELY excited for, for so many reasons. Sometimes it is so much fun to know the line up before it comes out. It’s the little things, I guess. Today’s guest is an absolute genius storyteller, to say the least. It’s Raynold Gideon, Everyone!

Raynold Gideon is a man who has a wealth of experience in the world of film and television as a writer, producer, actor, and more. For over 50 years, this man has been on a mission (whether he knew, or believes it, or not) to put out some wonderful work. He has received two well deserved Oscar nominations (both projects will be discussed in the text below, as you know we have an unhealthy and unreasonable love for these “awards”). Along with his long time writing partner Bruce A. Evans, penned what can only be referred to as the single greatest coming-of-age films of all time when they adapted, and dare I say bettered, the Stephen King story that would become the film Stand By Me.

Stand By Me is a god damned classic. We all know this. But, when the chance to share some words from the great Raynold Gideon came to fruition, I couldn’t help but think of one of my favorite stand up comedians and podcasters out there, Daniel Van Kirk, who I have heard, on more than a dozen occasions, say that Stand By Me remains his favorite film of all time. So I thought, why not see if he had anything he would like to ask Raynold about the film. And lo and behold, we managed to steal a few moments from Daniel to throw a question together for Raynold in order to join in on the fun. So just a delightful bonus to throw out there for you all. Thank you so much to Daniel Van Kirk for helping us out today!

So Folks, please enjoy this incredible interview we have for you all with the amazingly talented human being that is Raynold Gideon. He is a brilliant writer, the roommate of some very beautiful canines, and just an all around delightful human being. We talk about his coming up in the business, his long term partnerships, the disrespectfulness of Disney, and of course, the glorious film that is Stand By Me. Enjoy!

 

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What was it that initially that made you want to get into the world of writing and producing films? I understand that you initially entered the world of entertainment as an actor. What prompted you to make that shift?

Getting into writing was a total accident. A friend needed an idea for a short film. He was a theatre director and wanted to show he could direct film. I sat down one morning and sketched out what I thought would be a fun short. Other than dissertations at University I’d never written anything before. The director liked what I had written. I said he could have it if I played the lead, he said you can play the lead if you put up half the money to make the film, I did, we shot it and got an Academy Award nomination. It was called Frog Story. The actress we cast was dating Bruce Evans at that time and that’s how I met Bruce. Some months later Bruce and I wrote a short film together, we shot it, it was called James Sloan Private Eye. Bruce and I got along and said why not try to write a feature script together, we did and have been writing ever since.

 

How did you manage to team up with your writing partner of 40+ years, Bruce A. Evans? And what do you believe it is about you both as team that has worked so well in regards to bringing some wonderful stories to the big screen?

I somewhat answered this as part of the first question. Bruce and I like the same kind of movies, we’re good friends and we’ve had some success as a team. Why fix what’s not broken.

 

 Several of the projects that you have worked on have been adaptations from previous works, and many have been original scripts. I am curious to know which form of writing that geniuses of their craft such as yourself prefer. So, do you have any preference between the two? And which do you tend to find the most challenging?

Adaptations are a bit easier because you have the idea, the story. Originals are blank page time and a lot of ‘what if’s?’ We’ve mostly done originals. A Man A Woman and a Bank, Starman, Kuffs, Made in Heaven, Mr. Brooks

 

 

One very specific project that meant a lot to me as a child growing up in the 90’s that you wrote was the 1997 fish out of water tale Jungle 2 Jungle. As a 12 year old kid at the time, this Americanized remake of a 1994 French film was very special to me, and I still enjoy it to this day, if not only for nostalgic reasons. I am very curious to know what drew you to this project? What made you want to bring this story to American audiences?

Disney. We got a call from an executive at Disney. Would we be interested? We screened the film, loved it, said yes, and then were told we have Tim Allen, don’t lose him. So we wrote the script, we didn’t lose Tim, he loved our script. We were invited to a special afternoon Premiere, and everyone, cast, crew executives, all had reserved seats, we the writers did not, did not have a seat anywhere. To apologize, next day the executive sent us a case of ok wine.

 

A question from the wonderful & acclaimed comedian Daniel Van Kirk (Dumb People Town, Pen Pals podcasts): Throughout the 30+ years since the release of Stand By Me, what storyline, character trait, or moment in the film seems to still resonate the most with audiences?

Innocence. It was the age before those kids discovered girls, and rubbers and all that. It was an “Ah to be that free and happy again; also it was a terrific adventure for kids and for the young girls who came to the film again and again, it was “I always wanted to know what my brother was doing in that tree house with his friends”. Also everybody seems to remember Gordie to Ace…“Suck my fat one you cheap dime store hood’.

 

 

After so many years in the world of storytelling, I am curious to know what you believe to be your most prized accomplishment in the business? Not necessarily one singular project (could be though, if you so choose), but when you look back on your decades spanning career, what would you say you are most proud of? 

Stand By Me. Stand By Me. Stand By Me. Rob Reiner captured the innocence, the adventure, the humor of our script and I believe we captured the essence of Stephen King’s novella.

What does the future hold for you? Anything you would like to plug to our readers?

We have three projects that we like Sisyphus are pushing that rock up the hill to potential green lights.

What was the last thing that made you smile?

Sunrise this morning at Runyon Canyon.

 

And for a clip of one of the greatest scenes in American cinema:

 

Sunday Matinee: Princess of the Row [Film]

 

“Bouncing around the sometimes-abusive foster care system, a creative 12-year-old girl, Alicia Willis (Tayler Buck), ditches school to visit her military veteran father, Sgt. Beaumont “Bo” Willis (Edi Gathegi). After a battle-induced brain injury during his service in Iraq, Bo is now homeless and living on LA’s skid row suffering from severe PTSD. The injury renders him unable to recognize his own daughter most of the time, but to Alicia it doesn’t matter, because she remembers him as the father he used to be: a caring man with a love of storytelling.

Inheriting her father’s creativity, Alicia loves to write and spends most of her time writing fantasy tales of a Princess on a quest. But when Alicia’s social worker Magdalene (Ana Ortiz), places her in a perfect home with an award-winning writer, John Austin (Martin Sheen), she learns they live 10 hours away. Fearful of never seeing her father again, Alicia escapes the city with her father, on a mission to find a better life where they can be together in peace.” – Millennial PR

 

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If you are a living human with a pulse that is active, you will know just from the description of a film like this, that if it is done correctly, it is going to be a true work of art by the greatest design. And lucky to us living humans, it was done absolutely perfectly. Seriously Folks, this is not only one of the finest films I have seen in 2019, it is a gem of a film that is one of the best I have seen in a very long time.

The idea that we are seeing an abundance of homelessness being the result of hundreds of thousand of people fighting in two wars at the same time, and being a country that wasn’t ready to handle the trauma that they would feel as a result is absolutely sickening and terrifying. But, films like Princess of the Row are a prime example of a work of art that seeks to bring the discussion to the table. To humanize those who have suffered so much in this manner is truly beautiful and should definitely get the conversation started. Why are we spending so much money to go to war, yet are not prepared to support the troops on the homefront as well? It’s a question that has been asked so many times, yet nobody has a real answer to. The VA is out there, and I personally know people who are committing their lives to helping out our vets, and I truly commend them. But, it obviously isn’t enough. It’s god damn ridiculous, and it’s sickening. And while I truly love Princess of the Row as a film, I truly wish that it wasn’t so possibly true to life. I wish we could watch a film like this and see it in an Orwellian light and had to ask ourselves, “What would it be like if we really treated our veterans this way?”. Unfortunately, we don’t need to ask such a question, because it is currently the truth, and this story could have been truly ripped from real life experiences.

 

 

 

When it comes to performances, Tayler Buck is the clear standout in the matter. She runs the show here as not only the titular character, but as the ringleader of emotions that run throughout the film. Even with the likes of legendary performers like Martin Sheen and Edi Gathegi, who are absolutely brilliant by the way, this young woman steals the show thanks to not only her talents, but for the fact that she was a wonderfully written part done masterfully by director Max Carlson and writer A Shawn Austin.

So, when you find the opportunity, you owe it to yourself to check out this gem of a film that addresses some very serious issues in a responsible and artistic manner. It truly isn’t just the best film of 2019 thus far, it’s easily one of the best films of the last 20 years. I wouldn’t lie to you, Folks!

 

Princess of the Row is in select theaters now, and currently on the festival circuit. You can check out the film on Wednesday, April 3 at 8:00PM – TCL Chinese 6 Theatres, Hollywood, as part of the Beverly Hills Film Festival.