Laurelin's Light

Random Thoughts from a Confessed Film Snob

09 May 2006

Sharp Dressed Men - From Screen to Stage

My second film was a comedy titled "Sharp Dressed Men," written by G. Matthew Gaskell. I am currently in the process of submitting it to film festivals, so it may be a while before you have a chance to see it on the big screen, but in the meantime you will have the chance to see it live on stage!

Gaskell has adapted his screenplay for the stage and it is being produced this fall at the Players' Ring Theatre in Portsmouth, NH. Incidentally, I commissioned Gaskell to write the film version of SDM based on an old, unproduced stage play of his that went by the same name. This new stage version (and the film) are very different from the original manuscript except for the basic premise of a group of guys getting ready for a wedding, but each draft has been exponentially better than the last as Gaskell has developed his craft.

Gaskell is an incredibly gifted comic writer. He shuns easy, predictable jokes to find comedy in unexpected places. As a result, his characters are more believable and, frankly, funnier than those found in most modern comedies.

The stage play condenses some of the elements of my film. The play has only one set - a room in a church - and instead of having the film's 10 characters it has been trimmed down to only seven. Some of the comic bits which would not have translated onto the stage have been replaced with new (usually funnier) bits.

Almost half of the cast will be reprising their roles from the film. Gaskell will once again play the older brother Henry. Carolyn A.C. Turner and Adam LaFramboise will also reprise their roles as the love-sick wedding coordinator Rhonda and the arrogant videographer cousin Victor. Andrew Fling, who played younger brother Tom in the film, and I are swapping responsibilities this time around. He is directing and I will be playing Tom. Given the incredible performance which Fling gave in the film version, I have big shoes to fill.

The stage production of Sharp Dressed Men is being produced by Sharp Dressed Productions and will run for the first three weekends of September, 2006 at the Players' Ring.

I'll be keeping you posted here on the development of both the film and the play.


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