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Bios

Director: Madeleine Olnek

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Madeleine is a writer and director who honed her skills in downtown New York City venues with over 20 produced plays–all comedies. She is one of the authors of A Practical Handbook for the Actor (foreword by David Mamet), a widely-used acting textbook, which articulates a truthful approach to performance. She was awarded the William Goldman Screenwriting Fellowship and the Adrienne Shelly Award/Grant for Best Female Director at Columbia University Film School. Her first film, the comedy short Hold Up, was presented at Sundance in 2006. She returned to Sundance in 2009 with another award-winning comedy short, Countertransference. Olnek’s debut feature comedy, Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same, premiered at the 2011 Sundance film festival, was nominated for a Gotham Award and has been translated into many languages. She and her new feature, The Foxy Merkins, were nominated for an Independent Spirit Award. Her short films and Codependent (currently on sale at iTunes) are all watchable online.

CAST

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Lisa Haas is a playwright, comedy writer, and actor. In addition to performing in numerous plays by Madeleine Olnek, she was in Olnek’s feature film, Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same. Haas’ other film credits include Dyke Dollar, Valencia The Movie/s (Chapter 9) and It Gets Bitter. She has appeared as a solo performer in numerous U.S. and Canadian Fringe Festivals and was the recipient of Jerome Foundation Fellowship to premiere Crown Hill Cemetery in the Piccolo Spoleto Festival. She is also the lead writer for the stage comedy In Heat. www.lisa-haas.com. See her acting reel: http://bit.ly/LisaHaasReel

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Mainstream and alternative audiences alike cannot get enough of Jackie Monahan. A bi-coastal comic and a favorite at both Gotham Comedy Club and the Hollywood Improv, her humor is fresh, disarming and original. Esquire magazine voted Jackie best new(ish) comic, and said, “She’s got the look of your friend’s hot, older sister, and the jokes of a deranged serial killer. She will kill you, and you will be smiling.” Jackie has featured for Amy Schumer for two years running, and was winner of Time Out New York’s Joke of the Year. She co-starred in Madeleine Olnek’s Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same, which premiered at Sundance to rave reviews in both The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. Jackie has also appeared on VH-1, Showtime, Comedy Central, Adult Swim, Oxygen, and Logo. Trained at the Groundlings and Upright Citizens Brigade, Jump at the opportunity to see Jackie Monahan—a woman Roseanne Barr called “a fucking genius.” www.jackiemonahan.com

alex karpovsky

Alex Karpovsky acts and makes movies. His projects have appeared at Sundance, Cannes, Berlin, SXSW, Tribeca, and the Los Angeles film festivals. As an actor, Alex currently plays the role of Ray Ploshansky in the HBO comedy series Girls, and will appear as Marty Green in the upcoming Coen Brothers film, Inside Llewyn Davis. www.alexkarpovsky.com

© Rod Goodman 2010 All Rights Reserved

Sally Sockwell played Joanne in the New York production of Vanities for three years.  She was in Money Matters for HBO, the film Rollover, and Late Line with Al Franken. She has appeared at Playwright’s Horizons, Lion Theatre Company, Manhattan Punch Line, Primary Stages, Joe’s Pub, the Actor’s studio, HERE, and Dixon Place.  Regionally, she has worked at Baltimore Center Stage, Portland Stage Company, Syracuse Rep. Actor’s Theatre of Louisville, Arkansas Rep. Cincinnati Playhouse and the Sundance Institute Playwright’s lab. Sally appeared in Laura Terruso’s film Doris and the Intern and currently stars as Doris Anderson in Lisa Haas’s comedy In Heat.

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Susan Ziegler has performed in numerous venues internationally, Off-Broadway, Minneapolis and Los Angeles.  Titles include: Sister Cities (world premiere), Three Sisters, As You Like It, The Women, Macbeth, and What Went Wrong With The King & Queen Of America. TV includes: The B* in Apt. 23, Without A Trace, The Middleman, The West Wing, Days Of Our Lives. Film includes: TiMERs, Lying In Wait. Wild Bill, Countertransference, Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same (Sundance premiere). Graduate of NYU’s Experimental Theatre Wing. Member of the New American Theatre Studio Ensemble. For Michael and Oona.

Deb Deb

Deb Margolin is a playwright, actor and founding member of Split Britches Theater Company. She is the author of nine full-length solo performance pieces, and of numerous plays, including the recent Imagining Madoff. Deb’s featured role in Madeleine Olnek’s short film Countertransference launched a whole new chapter in her relationship with herself! She is currently teaching playwriting, acting, and other things in Yale University’s undergraduate Theater Studies Program, and living in New Jersey, which she denies. www.debmargolin.com

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Dennis Davis. FILM: Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same (Sundance 2011); Countertransference (Sundance 2009); Make Room for Phyllis (NewFest 2006); and Hold-Up (Sundance 2006).  THEATRE includes:  Madeleine Olnek’s Wild Nights with Emily, Help! Police!, and You Call for the Fireman and the Arsonist Comes; also, the world premieres of Mac Wellman’s plays Bad Penny, and Albanian Softshoe. MFA in Playwriting from Brown University. B.A. in Theatre from the City College of New York.

Ciesla_DianeDiane Ciesla has appeared at 59 E. 59, Lucille Lortel, Mint, Playhouse 91, Pittsburgh Public, Alabama Shakespeare, PlayMakers, GeVa, Hartford Stage, North Shore, New Harmony, Kansas City Starlight, Muny, McCarter Theatre, The Lark, Soho Rep, Target Margin, New Dramatists to name a few. Tours: Lost in Yonkers. Film: The People We Meet, Another Earth, Under New Management, Autumn Whispers, Bare. TV: Royal Pains, Lipstick Jungle, Law & Order, All My Children, Guiding Light.

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Babs Davy is a member of the writing/performing team The Five Lesbian Brothers whose plays have been published by Samuel French.  Other publications: Five Lesbian Brothers (Four Plays), Theatre Communications Group, 2000 and The Five Lesbian Brothers Guide to Life, Simon & Schuster, 1999. Babs is also the author of three solo performances, Women and Children First, (directed by Deb Margolin), How I Drank My Way Through Heterosexuality and Blest Like Me: psycho pharmacology and salvation.

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Betsy Farrell is a veteran of the WOW Café, and performed in several Madeleine Olnek stage productions, including The Destiny of Mimi, Disaster Area Nurse, and Spooky World. She also performed in Olnek’s tour de force, You Call for the Fireman and the Arsonist Comes at Joe’s Pub. Naturally, she was delighted to work with Madeleine in this new-fangled media format – film!  By day, Betsy manages scientific research laboratories, but is not affiliated with the monster institution that is swallowing up the Village, let the record show. Betsy hopes to spin this cameo role into a full-blown acting career in case this science thing is a bust.

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Gian Maria Annovi is an Italian writer and scholar living and working in Los Angeles. He is currently writing a book on Italian poet and filmmaker Pier Paolo Pasolini. This is his first film appearance.

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Charles Rogers is a filmmaker and performer who grew up between Acapulco, Mexico and the Texas-Mexico border.  As an MFA Candidate at NYU Graduate Film, his award-winning short films have screened at festivals around the world. He is a regular comedic performer at the Magnet Theater and is currently developing his first feature film.

Jennifer

Jennifer Prediger is an actor living in New York City. She went to Sundance this January with a co-starring role in ‘A TEACHER’ (dir. Hanna Fidell). In February, Jennifer acted in the ‘LIFE OF CRIME’ starring Jennifer Aniston, John Hawkes and Will Forte. She has a co-starring role as love interest and obsessed fan in the Gotham Award nominated comedy ‘RED FLAG’ (dir. Alex Karpovsky), released by Tribeca Film.

Jennifer starred in ‘UNCLE KENT’, a film directed by Joe Swanberg that premiered at Sundance in 2011 and was purchased by IFC. Jennifer has leading roles in microbudget films ‘RICHARD’S WEDDING’ (dir. Onur Tukel) and ‘POLLYWOGS’ (with co-star Kate Lyn Shiel), which will premier in 2013 at the Los Angeles Film Festival. She is currently directing and starring in a feature, ‘TROUBLE DOLLS’, alongside collaborator Jess Weixler. www.jenniferprediger.com

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Rae C Wright is a character actor, writer, OBIE winner w/NYStTheatreCaravan for ’Sustained Excellence in Theatre’, NYFA for Computer Arts, Fulbright Teaching Fellow, Prof Film&TV NYU, author 5 produced plays & The Breaks w/Deb Margolin, ’11 Hannah Pitt understudy @Signature Theatre’s Angels in America. Film roles include the cockroach comedy Joe’s Apartment plus numberless obscure & wonderful indies: Countertransference, the zombie-rights film Rising Up, KEYS.WALLET.PHONE. [Award For Merit 2013 Women’s Indie Fest LA] & long-ago, Borders, w/Steve Buscemi as her jilted lover. http://www.raecwright.com

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Elizabeth Whitney has been in GO Magazine’s 100 Women We Love, Curve Magazine’s Lesbian Theatre Awards, and a “Featured Artist” in Bitch Magazine. She is famous in Swedish feminist circles as “The Cook” in She’s Staging It, a critically humorous interpretation of Miss Julie.  For catharsis, she does stand-up as her alter ego/lesbian ally, Tricia Clayton Biltmore. She is working on a new solo performance project about failure, madness, and abolitionist Anna Elizabeth Dickinson.  www.elizabethjwhitney.com

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Frances Bodomo is a Ghanaian filmmaker that makes films about travelers, migrants, and outsiders. She grew up in Ghana, Norway, California, Hong Kong and New York City. Her first short film, Boneshaker  (starring Oscar-nominee Quvenzhané Wallis), premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival and continues its festival run today. She is currently in post-production on her next short film, Afronauts. She produced for and was featured on the hit web series The Slope, and is also an associate producer on The Fox Merkins.

Lee Eaton

Lee Eaton is a performer and cyclist. When not riding his bicycle across the continent, Lee is found in tiny dark rooms, drinking coffee and working as both free-lance colorist and staff video editor at non-profit City Lore in NYC. He has also been the first place winner for the last three years in the Shopping Cart Dance Contest.

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Nancy Giles was a member of the Second City Touring Company in 1984. She is a writer and contributor to CBS News Sunday Morning. She was the announcer and co-host of Fox After Breakfast. She starred in two ABC television series, playing girl GI Frankie Bunsen for three seasons on China Beach and hostile waitress Connie on the sitcom Delta. She had guest roles on shows including The Jury, L.A.LawLaw & Order, Dream On, and The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. Giles and her CBS colleague, correspondent Erin Moriarty have collaborated on two public-affairs radio series under the Giles and Moriarty banner, one for WPHT in Philadelphia and another for Greenstone Media. Both shows were produced at the facilities of the CBS Radio Network.

Claudia

Claudia Cogan is a comic as affable as she is matter-of-fact. And her approach is working: she’s been on Last Comic Standing 7 as a semi-finalist, been nominated three times for an Excellence in Comedy in New York (ECNY) award and won the first ever Time Out New York Joke of the Year. She was featured in New York Magazine’s Ten People Funny People Find Funny list. She has been seen at Bridgetown Comedy Festival, San Francisco SketchFest and clubs all over.

Laurie

Laurie Weeks is a writer and performer based in NYC. Her  fiction and essays have been published throughout the United Kingdom and the United States, including in Semiotext(e)’s The New Fuck You: Adventures in Lesbian Reading and most recently, Dave Egger’s The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2008. She was a screenwriter on Boys Don’t Cry. Weeks has taught at The New School in New York City and in 1996 was awarded a fiction fellowship by the New York Foundation for the Arts. She holds a Master of Arts in Performance Studies from New York University.

CREW

PRODUCER: Laura Terruso is a New York City based writer and filmmaker. While earning her MFA from NYU’s Graduate Film Program, she produced the feature length comedy Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same which premiered at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival and was nominated for a Gotham Independent Film Award. Her comedic short films have screened at over sixty film festivals worldwide and her short documentary The Last Butcher in Little Italy was aired on Channel 13 (PBS/NY). She was  a cinematographer for the critically acclaimed comedic web series The Slope (season 2) and High Maintenance and has also shot several short films, music videos and documentaries. Most recently, she produced a short film directed by Todd Solondz which will screen at the 2013 Venice Biennale. She also co-wrote a feature length comedy with comedian/writer Michael Showalter, based on her short film Doris & The Intern. She is currently writing a sitcom pilot and a screenplay for a feature film which she plans to direct in 2014.

EDITOR: Curtis Grout is a feature length film and television editor with experience in both narrative and documentary editing.  Before cutting Merkins, Curtis edited Madeleine Olnek’s first feature Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same which premiered at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival.  Enjoying all types of storytelling, Curtis has also edited feature length documentaries (To Them That’s Gone), and television (Hard Time for the National Geographic Channel).  He graduated San Francisco State University with a B.A. in Cinema and attended “The Art of Film Editing” at The Edit Center in New York City.

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Anna Stypko is a Polish American film director and cinematographer based in Brooklyn, NY. She graduated with a BFA in painting from Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia. Anna’s short film, Lispenard has screened at Sarasota Film Festival, Palm Springs International Short Fest and New Filmmakers NYFF. She is currently finishing her MFA from NYU Tisch School of Arts, where she is the recipient of a Graduate Film Department Fellowship, and writing her first feature.

COMPOSER: Dan Bartfield is a classically trained violinist and violist, and has performed and arranged music for over 20 years. He primarily collaborates with performance artist Joseph Keckler, and most recently for Keckler’s music video, The Ride, released March 2013. He has performed at major venues and festivals including Joe’s Pub, South by Southwest, and at the Neue Galerie presented by Carnegie Hall.

SOUND DESIGN/MIX: Bumi Hidaka (bio forthcoming)

SOUND DESIGN & FOLEY ARTIST: Drew Guido grew up in the village of Montgomery, NY. He has been playing instruments and writing music for as long as he can remember. In high school he bought some recording equipment and started tracking local bands and developing his passion for sound. He went on to get a Bachelors of Music in Music Technology at NYU Steinhardt. He now makes his living recording and mixing records, and mixing/sound designing for picture. He is currently a member of the band Montes Rook.

SOUND DESIGN & FOLEY ARTIST: Kimberly Powell was born and raised in New York. Growing up with a passion for the creation of music, she chose to pursue a degree in audio engineering. After receiving her Bachelor’s Degree, she enrolled in a Master’s program in Music Technology, where she found her love of sound design. She took an internship at audio post house Flavorlab, and has been working on their creative team ever since.

ASSOCIATE EDITOR: Akina Van Der Velde is a New York based DP and editor who has worked on feature films, webseries, music videos and commercial online catalogues. She is currently writing her own feature, and she received a BFA in film production and philosophy from USC.

PRODUCER: Laura Terruso is a New York City based writer and filmmaker. While earning her MFA from NYU’s Graduate Film Program, she produced the feature length comedy Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same which premiered at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival and was nominated for a Gotham Independent Film Award. Her comedic short films have screened at over sixty film festivals worldwide and her short documentary The Last Butcher in Little Italy was aired on Channel 13 (PBS/NY). She was a cinematographer for the critically acclaimed comedic web series The Slope (season 2) and High Maintenance and has also shot several short films, music videos and documentaries. Most recently, she produced a short film directed by Todd Solondz which will screen at the 2013 Venice Biennale. She also co-wrote a feature length comedy with comedian/writer Michael Showalter, based on her short film Doris & The Intern. She is currently writing a sitcom pilot and a screenplay for a feature film which she plans to direct in 2014.

ASSOCIATE PRODUCER: Frances Bodomo is a Ghanaian filmmaker that makes films about travelers, migrants, and outsiders. She grew up in Ghana, Norway, California, Hong Kong and New York City. Her first short film, BONESHAKER (starring Oscar-nominee Quvenzhané Wallis), premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival and continues its festival run today. She is currently in post-production on her next short film, AFRONAUTS.

ASSOCIATE PRODUCER: Jason Klorfein is one-half of Adult Contemporary, a production outfit with partner Rachel Wolther. His producing credits include  Ingrid Jungermann’s critically acclaimed web-series F to 7th, featuring Amy Sedaris, Michael Showalter, and Gaby Hoffmann, and the feature, Richard’s Wedding (Onur Tukel, 2012), distributed theatrically by Factory 25. Other production credits include See You Next Tuesday (Drew Tobia, 2013), and Keep the Lights On (Ira Sachs, 2012).

ASSOCIATE PRODUCER: Victoria Mele is a graduate of the Tisch School of the Arts where she gained experience producing, acting and screenwriting. She enjoys craft beer, travel and a good laugh. Currently, Victoria is freelancing, developing screenplays, and attempting to outrun her quarter-life crisis.

COSTUME DESIGNER: Linda Gui is thrilled to be working again with Madeleine Olnek. Previously, Linda designed intergalactic outfits for Madeleine Olnek’s “Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same,” as well as everyday wear for psychoanalysis in “Countertransference.” Linda also designed costumes for Yvonne Rainer’s “MURDER and Murder,” an independent feature that won a Teddy Award at the Berlin Film Festival. Besides film, Linda has worked for over a decade designing costumes for downtown theater in New York City.

COLORISTS: Lee Eaton and Marika Litz

ADDITIONAL EDITOR: Scott Burgess’s editing credits include Throw Down Your Heart, which won both an Audience Award at the SXSW Film Festival and Best Music Documentary at AFI-SilverDocs, ANPO: Art X War–which premiered at the Toronto Film Festival and was honored with a 4-month set of summer screenings at the Guggenheim Museum, and Betting the Farm which won the Audience Award at the Camden International Film Festival. Scott has edited films that have premiered at the Sundance, SXSW, IDFA, AFI-Silverdocs, and Toronto Film Festivals. Scott participated in the Sundance Institute Story and Edit Labs from 2008-2010. He generally lives and works in Brooklyn, NY, but is currently editing a film in Los Angeles about the Oscars.

ON SET SOUND RECORDISTS: Greg Mailloux, Laura Terruso and Wojtek Stypko

GAFFER: Anna Stypko

ASSISTANT DIRECTOR/ASSISTANT EDITOR: Frances Bodomo

PA/CLEARANCES: Victoria Mele

ADDITIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY: Adam Ginsberg and Brian Lannin

PRE-PRODUCTION SUPERVISOR: Ellis Watamanuk

ADR RECORDIST/SUPERVISOR: Melissa Finell; ADR EDITOR: Dave Miller

ADDITIONAL CREW: Woytek Stypko, Laura Martin, Sharath Venugopal

PUBLICIST: Kathleen McInnis

TITLE DESIGNER: Anthony Terruso

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