About this project
THE FOXY MERKINS is a feature length, female prostitute buddy comedy, paying homage to and riffing off of iconic male hustler films. This film is FINISHED! We want to get it to SUNDANCE and take it to audiences everywhere with your help!
WHO WE ARE: We are comedy writers and performers who previously made the film “Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same,” which premiered at Sundance. Of “The Foxy Merkins” team, Lisa Haas and Madeleine Olnek have worked in Downtown NYC venues doing original theater for years, and then they met Jackie Monahan when Madeleine cast her in their first feature. On the festival circuit with the film, they started to feel a little bit like hookers, and Madeleine had always wanted to make an homage to and parody of iconic male hustler films, so we decided to start production!
Now we have been writing and shooting our new film, “The Foxy Merkins” over the past two years and played at "Next Weekend," Sundance’s first-ever festival in LA-- we had a great reaction, sold-out houses, and some people even returned to see it a second time! We were even more surprised when "The Foxy Merkins" and Madeleine were nominated for an Independent Spirit Award! Our surprise turned into advanced shock after we got accepted to play at SUNDANCE 2014!
We are so excited about this movie, and even though it will be screening at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, we need extra money to get the film set-up for real distribution-- The actual physical print of our movie, computer drives for all the materials, legal fees, mandatory distribution insurance, print and advertising budgets and even the costs of hitting the road to promote the film -- it's a long list of things we have to get into place in a short amount of time, if we really want the film to have the chance of reaching a larger audience and playing at a festival or theater near you!
We will gladly accept any donation-- and thank you profusely. Our movie is about two lesbian hookers who wind their way through a world of bargain-hunting housewives and double-dealing conservative women. It’s a comedy! And honestly, the kind of outrageous comedy/adventure movie with two female leads you normally don't get to see!
So, if you are looking for a "good time," come join us as we try to get the film over the finish line to Sundance and beyond!
Thank you for believing in us and the film--
Director/Co-Writer, The Foxy Merkins
Lisa Haas & Jackie Monahan
The Foxy Merkins, Leads & Co-Writers
Laura Terruso, Producer
And the whole Foxy Merkins Gang!
Madeleine Olnek 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. Her first feature, “Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same” (Sundance 2011) was called “hilarious” by The Hollywood Reporter, and is viewable online with her short films “Countertransference” and “Hold Up.” Olnek and her new feature, “The Foxy Merkins,” were nominated for an Independent Spirit Award, following their screenings at Sundance's "NEXT WEEKEND" festival in LA; "The Foxy Merkins" is an official selection of the upcoming Sundance 2014 film festival.
Jackie Monahan (a bi-coastal actor and comic who trained at the Groundlings and Upright Citizens Brigade), is a favorite at both Gotham Comedy Club and the Hollywood Improv. Jackie has featured for Amy Schumer for two years running, and was winner of Time Out New York’s Joke of the Year. She has also appeared on VH-1, Showtime, Comedy Central, Adult Swim, Oxygen, and Logo. “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.” And guess what? Roseanne Barr called her “a fucking genius.”
Lisa Haas is a playwright, comedy writer, and actor. In addition being in Olnek’s feature film “Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same,” she has performed in numerous plays by Olnek in NYC’s downtown performance scene. A recipient of a Jerome Foundation Fellowship, she has written and performed in solo pieces and plays nationally and internationally. Haas’ other film credits include “Dyke Dollar”, “Valencia The Movie/s” (Chapter 9) and “It Gets Bitter”. You can find her comedy blog on Curvemag.com.
ABOUT OUR COLLABORATORS
From Left to Right: Composer Dan Bartfield, DP Anna Stypko, Lead Lisa Haas, Producer Laura Terruso, Director Madeleine Olnek, Actor Susan Ziegler, Lead Jackie Monahan, Actor Anne Robertson, Associate Producer Victoria Mele, Associate Producer and Featured Cameo Role Frances Bodomo.
Actor 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.
Actor 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.
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.
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). Most recently, she produced a short film directed by Todd Solondz which screened 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.
Susan Ziegler is an actor who has performed in numerous venues internationally, Off-Broadway, Minneapolis and Los Angeles. In addition to being in Olnek’s feature film “Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same,” she has performed in numerous plays by Olnek in NYC’s downtown performance scene. On stage she has been seen in “Sister Cities” (world premiere), “Three Sisters,” “As You Like It,” “The Women,” “Macbeth” and “What Went Wrong With The King & Queen Of America.” Her TV appearances includes: “The B* in Apt. 23,” “Without A Trace,” “The Middleman,” “The West Wing” and “Days Of Our Lives.” Film includes: “TiMERs,” “Lying In Wait,” “Wild Bill” and “Countertransference.” She is a graduate of NYU’s Experimental Theatre Wing and a member of the New American Theatre Studio Ensemble. Currently, she lives it up in sunny L.A. with family members Michael and Oona.
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, as well as being in several Madeleine Olnek plays.
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
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
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 recently finished co-directing his first feature film.http://foxymerkins.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/charles_rogers.jpeg?w=100&h=150
MORE COLLABORATOR BIOS at http://foxymerkins.wordpress.com/castcrew/
CHECK OUT OUR OUR FILM PAGE AT SUNDANCE! http://filmguide.sundance.org/film/13939/the_foxy_merkins
And here is a link to OUR PREVIOUS KICKSTARTER CAMPAIGN run by our Space Aliens Associate Producer Lucy Sexton: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/84148707/codependent-lesbian-space-alien-seeks-same
Risks and challenges
We make cutting-edge outrageous comedies, and because of the working methods we use it is impossible to raise our budgets up front, since we do not use traditional the script to screen set-up. Therefore we take a risk and go ahead without all our resources in place, which makes our Kickstarter campaign even more important. We've done amazing so far, with our Independent Spirit Nomination and our Sundance 2014 selection, but now we need to get over the final finish line.
We worked hard to make our prizes as enticing and strange as our motion pictures, so we hope our kickstarter campaign will be alluring enough to merit your contributions! No donation is too small. Don’t feel cheap and tawdry giving $5 dollars unless you want to! Plus you’ll have our deepest appreciation as well.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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