It is Friday and that means it is time for the World Famous, soon to be Intergalactic Famous, News Sushi from our very own, Hamish Downie. Hamish brings us a decidedly different slant on Pop Culture as viewed through the lens of a non-native living in Japan.
Thank you Hamish, for your insights.
As we speak, I’ll be taking a day trip somewhere, on one of the few long weekend’s I’ve allowed myself to take this year. I was planning to work all the public holidays this year, but I think I’ve probably worked myself to the bone this year…
How about you? Are you looking forward to the winter holidays? I know I am.
This week, we’ve got an interview with a young writer who has had his first feature film debut on the festival circuit recently…
But, first, here’s the trailer to his film; “Karen Doesn’t Dream”
The skinny: After the passing of her mother, Karen (Jessica Lynn Skinner) moved back to her hometown in Seaside Oregon. As she struggles with chronic insomnia, Karen spends her time working a graveyard shift at a local porn shop, selling watered-down alcohol to underaged high schoolers, and laying in bed for a sleep that never comes. One night at work, Julianne (Angela Roxanne) enters Karen’s life and asks for “sleep tapes”, specifically VHS footage of strangers sleeping in their homes. The strange tapes captivate Karen into an unfamiliar relief. As Karen and Julianne bond, Karen delves deeper into her newfound hobby, unaware of the misfortunes she may awake.
Now, let’s meet the man himself!
NEWS SUSHI… meets Cody Dean
TGG: Today we have an interview with Cody Dean, the up and coming writer of “Karen Doesn’t Dream”. Cody, could you introduce yourself a bit for our readers?
CD: Hey Hamish, thanks for having me! I’m a writer from Portland, Oregon, mainly focusing on film, but I’m also fond of writing for comics and general prose. At the core of it, I just love telling stories by whatever means possible, but my heart will always lean toward writing for the screen.
TGG: We love all those here at TGGeeks! Congratulations on getting your first feature film credit! What is the film about and how did you come up with the idea for the film?
CD: Thanks so much! It’s honestly very surreal and I’m incredibly grateful to have this opportunity. Karen Doesn’t Dream is about a woman in her late 20’s who, after dealing with a significant loss, suffers from grief and insomnia. She’s introduced to underground home-invasion tapes that, for unbeknownst reasons, soothe her soul. At the center of it all is how we all deal with loss, loneliness, and addiction in our own unique way. The film is timely, dreamy, and just as ambiguous as the themes it touches on.
At the time of writing, I was in a pretty strange headspace and Karen came to be my own way of coping. It was cathartic and almost necessary for me at the time, and it really came naturally.
TGG: It’s funny the way the best projects don’t have to be forced, they just flow out! You are living the dream of many writers… can you tell us the story of how your script got picked up to get produced?
CD: When I was in college at Portland State University, I took a screenwriting workshop that was aimed specifically at developing a feature-length film script. Each person taking the class had to come up with pages for your peers to read out loud, so you could get constructive criticism. At the time it was terrifying, but it was really beneficial because it forced all of us to be our sharpest, mainly out of fear of embarrassment. After a very early draft of Karen was read, I was approached by members of PSU.TV who thought it was great and encouraged me to actually flesh it out and finish it. Later that year, they were wanting a script to produce, and the next thing I know, “Karen Doesn’t Dream” is in pre-production. If it hadn’t been for PSU.TV, we wouldn’t be having this conversation right now. They really are a great group of people.
TGG: That must be really thrilling to have the backing of your school behind you. They must really believe in you. By the way, How are you preparing yourself for your festival debut?
CD: Anyone will tell you that it’s all about networking, but I’m just excited to meet more people with the same passions as mine, and to see films from fresh and unique voices. What I’m really excited for, though, is to see the careers of everyone who worked on the film blossom. The director, Zach Huckaby, and star, Jessica Skinner, are going to be household names sooner than you’d think. I can honestly say that my script is pretty good, but what they and the rest of the crew did with it, turned it into magic.
TGG: Sounds like a great team! So, what’s next for you?
CD: I’ve been working on a “passion project” script that’s based on true events. I wouldn’t want to give away too much, but it deals with the moral corruption of capitalizing on the loss of life. But to save me from writing myself into a hole of despair, content wise, I’m up for any other opportunities that come my way.
TGG: Sounds intriguing! Finally, how can we best support you and the film (links to your work, social media etc)?
CD: You can find me on Instagram @codles. Karen Doesn’t Dream is on Facebook at this Link and on Instagram @karendoesntdream. Thanks so much Hamish and the rest of the crew at Two Gay Geeks! You’re the best, and this has been a blast.
Teaser Trailer: https://youtu.be/avnmGRkrfIU
TGG: Thank you for taking the time to speak to us! I’m sure that we’re all looking forward to the film now!
Congratulations Daryl! Those of you might remember our recent interview with Daryl about his film, “Stay”…
If you love Totoro… maybe you might want to… eat him?????
If you are my friend Nina, that’s exactly what you’d do (and me too, if I were still in Tokyo):
And finally, the HOT LINK of the Week!
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And with that…
see you next time!
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