Where did this come from?

I spend a lot of time with young creative minds that need a big break. They show up in Hollywood, get into a machine that’s often predatory. They often get churned up and spit out with less money in their pockets then they came with and their hearts broken. As an artistic coach, it’s hard to know when to be encouraging and when to show tough love. Some will make it, some will not, that’s the market and what business isn’t hard core like that? Life isn’t fair. When I met the two stars of this film, they came to see me for vocal coaching. They were each unique and incredibly motivated. Thanks to some special circumstances due to my real job - producing - an angel financier took interest in my wild first self-satirical musical film Naked: A Guy’s Musical. I had been waiting, with my thumb out hitch-hiking on the road to capital for my ‘first time feature director’ opportunities for ten years. By the grace of this angel, I was offered the trust and just enough capital support to make a small feature… a very small feature. I thought, I’m not going to make the same mistake I made the last time. I need to make this movie about somebody else. And Lexie Lowell and Jeff Kenny were the perfect subjects at the perfect time. They had natural qualities that I felt might make something truly unique, if I could just figure out what it should be.

Lexie Lowell reminded me of Goldie Hawn with the potential of so many colors, expressions, moods, and man - she could really sing. Her original songs on the guitar are melodious and her voice - crystal clear. The fact that she plays the harp, well, that’s all you have to know. She just didn’t have that much experience acting in front of a camera, and she desperately needed a break. Jeff, on the other hand, had been studying all kinds of film and acting for many years and was truly pursuing the American dream. He moved to Hollywood from Russia, was deeply concerned about his accent, and oddly enough was quite a weirdly talented rapper. A speed rapper, no less. I was unfamiliar with the Russian genre, but I wasn’t that into rap to begin with, so what. But somehow, that was the spark. A Russian rapper and a folk singer - stuck together against their will.

Now due to the budget constraints I knew we had to get creative. There was no way we were going to get very far with the money we had and have it be anything interesting without thinking WAY outside the box. So, my mind went into standard operating territory, producer brain. We needed to contain the story to as few locations as possible. A dorm, a car ride… can it go nowhere? and… yeah, back to the dorm. Sure… But why? Oh, and we need it to just be them. We can’t afford any other bodies on camera. Then the concept dawned on me. Two kids missed the evacuation of earth due to Trump’s policies (he wasn’t even elected at the time so this was an unimaginable doomsday farce at first). The kids have to figure out how to get caught up with society and, oh yeah, what happened along the way. It being a two-hander, I thought it was best to build off of Jeff and Lexie’s personalities and backgrounds so they could easily connect with the material and characters. They were totally different to begin with. While they are each brilliantly smart, they were just on the opposite sides of reality, sort of speak. Jeff’s father was a physicist in Russia and that led to months of discussing Jeff’s personal fascination with Quantum Mechanics, which I knew nothing about. Lexie’s Catholic school upbringing turned USC sorority hottie, while the more extreme plot details in the film are truly exaggerated and some not true at all, for her personally, felt like satire central. So, the awkward theoretical physicist loses his virginity to a hot sorority girl idea was born. And then, from there, the writing became more personal for me…

I grew up in the Midwest and was raised by two parents, one agnostic and one very devout Christian.  I went on to study religion in college and have been fascinated by mankind's search for the meaning of life ever since.  It wasn't until interviewing Jeff that I was introduced to Quantum Mechanics and the most current physics that is so mind boggling it defies logic.  From Einstein's general theory of relativity to the particle physics making headlines today, what I missed in school growing up being a musical theater nerd was just embarrassing.  Is it me, or does science and religion actually sound closer to getting along than ever?!”  

So, Jeff and I set out to make a Quantum Physics for Dummies movie. The science defies logical. Like: “Time in an illusion.” And, “your observation effects the outcome…” It feels absurd and satirizes our very sense of reality. I thought it would be an interesting challenge because cinema itself, and especially our hollywood western rules of story seemed at stake. So, MDD Spacetime sometimes spoofs hollywood, sometimes it is the actors that inspired the script itself. I was taught by Don Richardson that comedy is serious stuff. The philosophical nature of the QM science reminded me of postmodern theatre, like “Waiting for Godot.” Painfully existential. So, this crazy film will be painful to watch for some, funnily enough, that’s actually on purpose. I’m sorry. It’s not normal hero structure, definitely on the fringe, a mix of mini and anti-plot for those who take story seriously and I fully accept a lot of people won’t get most of it. QM as they say, isn’t meant to be understood, and if you think you do… you don’t. Don’t worry, I know I don’t get the real science either. Rather, I hope a few in the audiences can just give into the absurdity and have a little fun. Laughing at ourselves is good. Our pursuit of the unknowable stuff is admirable and we definitely need the real scientists to save the planet. I think the only thing we artists can really do while the serious lifting is done by those with particle physics knowledge is, try to help humanity not miss the point. Without love in our hearts towards each other… we’re all kind of lost to repeat the lessons of life again and again.

Ultimately, I’ve certainly learned a lot making this scrappy little movie… Sadly, near the end, my dear dog Bodhi got hit by a car. It was the last heartbreaking challenge to overcome. So, I took on his name to point to the spiritual journey this film has been for me personally and dedicate the film to him. I’m deeply grateful and humbled by the absurd amount of collaboration, sacrifice, and capital these projects take. Don’t knock it until you’ve tried it, I say. But the real goal was simple from the start, showcase Lexie and Jeff. Give them a boost, the Hollywood break, the material they weren’t going to find in the market by auditioning. Make something tailored for their talent that might stand out from everything else out there. And at the same time, stand for a message we can be proud of by the end of the day. - Bo D

THE CAST

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LEXIE LOWELL

was on Broadway in Deaf West Theatre's revival of SPRING AWAKENING as Greta, and also played the harp in the production.  She most recently created the one-woman show GIRL, BOUND in the Hollywood Fringe Festival, an inspiring and comedic coming of age story about her journey to overcome bulimia and sexual assault.  She is a graduate of USC's theatre program where she starred in CHICAGO as Roxie, CITY OF ANGELS as Mallory, and also performed in productions of COMPANY, BAT BOY, INTO THE WOODS, and CABARET.  She was a member in the twice international champion a cappella group the SoCal VoCals. Prior to college, she appeared in CATS, PETER PAN,  BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, GODSPELL, FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, ONCE UPON A MATTRESS, and THE TEMPEST, to name a few.  She plays the harp and guitar, and is working on her first album of original songs with Grammy nominated producer Kyle Townsend who produced the music for the film. 

 

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JEFF KENNY

is a world class ballroom dancer and has performed in competitions all over Europe, eventually winning 3rd place in the World Ballroom Championship in Poland.  He is also the GOLD Winner of the Duke of Edinburgh Award, UK, a prestigious competition evaluating the character, talent and potential of youth. Jeff studied film at Bennington College and at the Prague Film School with Nancy Bishop, where he performed in, directed and/or produced fifteen short projects.  He performed in plays under the direction of Jean Randich. In Los Angeles, he studies acting at the Scott Sedita Acting Studios and Anthony Meindl's Actor Workshop.

 

 

THE TEAM

Bo D

Writer-Director-Composer and plays “The Agent”

Kyle Townsend

Music Producer

Dave Scott

Choreography

Jonathan Baker as The Agent.

Bo D dedicates most of his creative energies to supporting upcoming artists and causes to better humanity. He co-directed the short film Harper Finch, wrote-directed-composed the self-satire Naked: A Guy’s Musial; and starred in Thank You for Not Smoking which went to Sundance. In his other life, he produces, couches artists and teaches at a few universities. He got his start on Broadway and later at a major film studio. He attended The University of Michigan Musical Theatre Program, Boston Conservatory of Music, and UCLA Extension in acting and directing with Don Richardson.  

Alexandra Winter as Kara.

Kyle Townsend is a prolific producer and composer whose distinguished work has led to 2 Grammy Award nominations. He has established himself as a world class producer, having helmed the board for an illustrious roster of music’s elite, including iconic artists Celine Dion and Mary J. Blige, as well as Lady Gaga, Jennifer Hudson and longtime collaborator-- legendary songwriter Diane Warren. Kyle is a diverse musician and heavyweight talent who has built a career that stretches beyond his work with chart topping recording artists including Ariana Grande and Fifth Harmony. 

Jeff Kenny as Toby.

Dave Scott has a multi-faceted career in dance, choreography, and artist development. He is highly praised for his work on Step Up (which he received the award for Best Choreography in a feature film at the World of Dance awards) and the romantic comedy Made of Honor. Dave has also been featured on “Dancing with the Stars” and has hosted hit MTV show “Countdown to American's Best Dance Crew.” Other credits include Dance Flick, Stomp the Yard, You Got Served (which garnered him the 10th Annual Choreography Award for Best Choreography in a Feature) and Step Up 2, among many, many others.