SYNOPSIS: A burnt-out party boy has his queer city life turned upside down when his estranged small-town best friend shows up at his door, pregnant and desperate for him to pretend to be the father to satisfy her scarily religious mother.A coming of age comedy about the length millennials will go to keep up appearances and start ‘adulting’ as thirty quickly approaches.
Created By: Cody Ray
Producer: Charlie David, Heidi Lynch
Writer: Mark Keller
Casting Director: Jesse Griffiths
Casting Assistant: Izad Etemadi
Start Date(s): Summer 2020
Shoot Location: Toronto
Rate: Paid, Non-Union – $300.00/day
[PATRICK] Male, 30s, any ethnicity. The love interest/romantic lead. Blind or partially sighted actor. After closing his heart in the past, Patrick is ready to start dating again and has taken interest in Mark after meeting at a Lamaze class. A nursing student, he is book smart with a heart of gold. In recovery. Comedic chops required. Actively seeking members from the LGBTQ+ community but open to all submissions.
[MARY] Female, 30s, any ethnicity. Small town, pregnant with a very religious mother. Terrified of never moving forward in life, Mary convinces her ex-best friend Mark to pretend to be her baby daddy. Coming up with a set of rules for Mark to follow, she is determined to get what she is owed while escaping the clutches of her religious Mother and small-town stagnation. Comedic chops required.
[DOROTHY] Female, 50s – 60s, any ethnicity. Mary’s mother. Ultra-religious, born-again Christian. In AA. Ashamed of the neglect toward Mary as a child, Dorothy is enthralled for her second chance to be motherly when Mary reveals she is pregnant. Overbearing and over-opinionated, she’s launched herself fully into the role of Grandmother. Nothing will come between her and the eternal soul of her grandchild. Comedic chops required.
[MARK] Male, 25-35, any ethnicity. An avid party-goer lost in the thumpa thumpa of the Toronto queer bar scene, and growing weary of it fast. His razor-sharp wit and sass covers his disdain for his current situation: Nearly 30, with nothing to show for it and stuck in a dead-end job. When his ex-best friend Mary offers a chance at grounding himself, he takes it. Comedic timing required. Actively seeking members from the LGBTQ+ community, but open to all submissions.
[KYLE] Male, 25-35, any ethnicity. Mark’s best friend in the city, Kyle lives life to the fullest. He’s impervious to hangovers and doesn’t want to waste a minute of his gay existence in the city. The life of the party, he is brash, unapologetic and fiercely loyal in his friendships.
Drag Heals season 2 is now casting in Toronto. The second season of Drag Heals will showcase 8 drag kings and queens who participate in a 10 class workshop with theatre director Tracey Erin Smith, founder of Soulo Theatre. The ten workshops will culminate in 2 public shows at Buddies In Bad Times cabaret theatre in Toronto.
Each week a guest coach will join Tracey Erin Smith in exploring soul-deep story sharing techniques as well as the unique talents and skills required from a drag king or queen.
We invite self-tape submissions from all genders, ages, and ethnicities. 8 participants will be selected to win this 10 class course with Tracey Erin Smith and join the cast of Drag Heals for two live performances at Buddies in Bad Times cabaret theatre.
There is no payment for participation in documentary TV series. All theatre net proceeds from the performances will be split equally between performers.
We invite all interested parties to view Drag Heals season 1 on OUTtvGo.com (free week trial available) or on Amazon Prime.
How to apply to be part of the Drag Heals season 2 cast
Please include: your name, stage name, phone number, email, confirm you live in Toronto and are available for all dates in the shooting schedule below. Finally be sure to include answers to 2 of the questions found lower down in this post.
Feel free to get creative in your video. We want to see and know who you are and why you want to do this! Walk us through your drag closet, introduce us to your best friend, mother, roommate.
Applicants to Drag Heals season 2 must be available for ALL dates/times listed below:
DRAG HEALS season 2 SHOOTING SCHEDULE Sat. Jan. 4th/20 11am to 4pm WORKSHOP Sun. Jan. 5th/20 11am to 4pm WORKSHOP Sat. Jan. 11th/20 2pm to 7pm WORKSHOP Sun. Jan. 12th/20 11am to 4pm WORKSHOP Sat. Jan. 18th/20 11am to 4pm WORKSHOP Sun. Jan. 19th/20 11am to 4pm WORKSHOP Tues. Jan. 2st/20 11am to 4pm WORKSHOP Sat. Jan. 25th/20 11am to 4pm WORKSHOP Sun. Jan. 26th/20 11am to 4pm WORKSHOP Thu. Jan. 30th/20 6:30pm to 11:30pm TECH RUN Fri. Jan. 31st/20 Doors 7pm, show 8pm PERFORMANCE Sat. Feb. 1st/20 Doors 7pm, show 8pm PERFORMANCE
APPLICANTS – Please answer 2 of the following questions:
1) What have you survived and how have you survived it? 2) What excites you most about doing drag? 3) Who doesn’t know you do drag and why haven’t you shared with them? 4) In a perfect fantasy performance, what would you do? 5) If you’ve never done drag before, what excites you about trying it? 6) How do you think the drag king and drag queen worlds could benefit from working together? 7) What scares you about drag and the idea of doing an open-hearted course that will put you on stage in front of hundreds of people? 8) What will you bring to the others in the group?
SEEKING the following people for Drag Heals season 2
DRAG KINGS – Seeking seasoned and newbie DRAG KINGS that live in Toronto, are available for all shoot dates, are excited about bringing their drag and performance to a new level of professionalism and have a great big open heart and mind!
DRAG QUEENS – Seeking seasoned and newbie DRAG QUEENS that live in Toronto, are available for all shoot dates, are excited about bringing their drag and performance to a new level of professionalism and have a great big open heart and mind!
GENDER QUEER PERFORMERS – Seeking seasoned and newbie GENDER QUEER PERFORMERS that live in Toronto, are available for all shoot dates, are excited about bringing their drag and performance to a new level of professionalism and have a great big open heart and mind! Does your performance/look defy categories? Submit here and share why!
GUEST COACHES – Are you a seasoned pro in the fields of performance, singing, dance, make-up/hair, costuming, entertainment business, etc? We are looking for professionals to join us who will share their wisdom and experience! Tell us about yourself and what you can offer in coaching drag queens and drag kings.
Drag Heals season 2 further details
NETWORK: OUTtv Canada Drag Heals season 2 will air on OUTtv in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and India giving participants the opportunity to raise their profile and be seen by millions around the globe.
What was your inspiration for these three stories?
Charlie David: I’ve always loved Greek and Roman mythology and really used that passion as a springboard to write my book of short stories, also titled Shadowlands.
And in terms of cinema I appreciate a well crafted anthology film. I saw Wild Tales by director Damián Szifron and it was so incredibly well done. It inspired me to revisit my stories in Shadowlands and re-imagine them for the screen.
Why did you opt for this triptych style of presentation?
Charlie David: I’m sure the rule and magic of the number three has been ingrained in many of us from a religious standpoint – every major religion has numerological references and ‘3’ being ever present among them.
I think it’s also inherent to human psychology to understand that there is a natural order to the number three. Our modern and ancient story structure is most often presented in a three act structure – whether that’s television, film, books or other media.
There’s something innately satisfying when that triptych structure works – it leaves us feeling a sense of completion. And when it’s not followed, that’s often when we walk out of a film or set down a book once finished reading and feeling complacent, unmoved or unchanged.
The playwrights in Ancient Greece wrote for their audience to experience catharsis, they wanted to invoke an emotional response in the people watching because that’s how to incite change. An emotional response will provoke conversation after you leave the movie theatre, turn off the TV or put down a book.
To me that is our goal as creators – to leave our audience moved, educated, and emotionally open. In ancient Greece they held a large festival called the Dionysia and three full days were devoted to the performances of three playwrights – each presenting a set of three tragedies.
My inspiration for many of the Shadowlands stories both in the book and the TV miniseries were these ancient myths. Though I’ve told them in modern settings, I still wanted to honor as many details as I could from their story roots and that included their presentation in a tragic trilogy.
What’s the connection between the three stories that form Shadowlands?
Charlie David: Shadowlands is an anthology style series that explores love in three separate stories – a couple renegotiating a relationship, a narcissist grasping to comprehend it, and star-crossed lovers mourning its loss.
The series begins in 1928 with Alex, a plastic surgeon hell-bent on perfection, hosting a house party with an assortment of colorful guests. Amid romantic misfires it becomes apparent that the only person Alex is interested in is himself.
Fast forward to 1951 and a gay military couple exploring the idea of opening their relationship while on a remote camping trip when they encounter a mysterious stranger.
The stories conclude in 2018 with a painter who in mourning the loss of his lover, becomes obsessed with creating a realistic painting of him. The resulting piece is so beautiful and life like that he is drawn under its spell.
What does Shadowlands tell us about love?
Charlie David: Love to me is like the face of God or of the unknown. It’s a multi-faceted diamond and each way you turn it in the light you will see something different.
In Shadowlands I’ve explored three stories of characters gazing into different sides of this multi-faceted diamond. Each of them is seeing and experiencing love, the loss or expansion of love in a different way. Just as I hope each person who watches the show will see aspects known and unknown to them reflected back.
The first story, Narcissus is really about someone who has not exercised his emotional toolbox enough to comprehend empathy and love – like many of us in our youth.
The second story, Mating Season is about a couple negotiating the often prickly subject of non-monogamy or polyamory. Is it possible to fully love another but also have room in your heart to expand beyond the traditional norms of our society? Does the addition of new experiences diminish the already present love in a relationship or can it multiply it?
The final story, Pygmalion Revisited is about the tragic loss of love – something that all of us will face in life whether it be a family member, friend or lover.
What was the production process? How long to write? How long to film? Was it difficult to find the locations you needed?
Charlie David: I wrote the Shadowlands book over the course of a year. The adaptations for screen took another year in writing amid doing several other projects. Pre-production including financing, development, casting, and all the other myriad jobs that go into prepping a show took another 6 months. We filmed a total of 20 days. Editing and post production was 6 months.
The locations were challenging to find. I had a vision in mind and if you have a massive budget that’s one thing – you can just go into studio and build sets until you get it right. But that wasn’t the case here.
I had restrictions based on my funding that required I shoot outside of the Toronto studio zone, in fact at least an hour’s drive outside Toronto in any direction so my scouting consisted of a lot of road trips to various other cities and towns in Ontario to try find what I was hoping for.
In the end I’m super happy with our locations and there really are so many inspiring places. More often than not, even when I didn’t find the perfect match for Shadowlands, I’d find myself feeling the inspiration for other stories in these smaller cities and beautiful landscapes.
What was the casting process?
Charlie David: I worked with Jason Stroud from Fade to Black casting and we saw a lot of actors based in Toronto. That’s one of my favorite parts of the film making process. As an actor myself, working as a producer and director has given me so much insight into production.
I can’t tell you how many times you have really equally talented people as options for the same role and it comes down to the most inane things – a comment on hairstyle from a network exec, height matching with another actor, the list goes on.
If you’re an actor reading this, please just keep bringing your authentic self to the work and when you’re done the audition leave it at the door. There are so many factors that come into casting that are absolutely subjective. The toughest lesson an actor has to learn is to not take the rejection personally, to disintegrate the ego – there’s going to be a lot of rejection no matter who you are – most of the time it has absolutely nothing to do with you.
That’s why I think actors are some of the craziest people on the planet and why I love them so much. They pay for ongoing classes, they spend hours memorizing and living other people’s words in preparation for auditions, they drive all over town repeatedly to go to job interview after job interview, they are constantly physically and emotionally scrutinized. Most have multiple jobs to simply juggle the demands of living in a major city in order to pursue their passion and the lucky few actually get to work from time to time.
It’s also why I think it’s incredibly important to continue creating scripted content with an LGBTQ+ focus. Most of us within this space are still learning the ropes, we’re still figuring it out because we’re finally getting the green lights and more importantly finally giving ourselves the green lights to actually go out and make the stories we want to make – the ones where we see ourselves and our lives reflected on the screen.
What do you hope that people feel when watching Shadowlands?
Charlie David: Something. Just something! Seriously, I never want to inform or telegraph to an audience what they should feel. My goal when creating is to make you think outside of your comfort zone. I want to push the envelope and as Rumi so perfectly stated, to go ‘Out beyond the ideas of right and wrong, there is a field. I’ll meet you there.’
Who are some of your film heroes or inspirations?
Charlie David: Xavier Dolan. Absolutely. He’s my fellow Canadian director of course and the guy is brilliant. He knows fashion, pop culture, has so much emotional depth and just understands what makes us tick.
I’ve watched and re-watched all his films many times and they never stop teaching me about the art of film-making. When he was making his latest film, The Life and Death of John F. Donovan I was asked to come photo double and stand-in for Kit Harington. I jumped at the opportunity because even though I wouldn’t be acting in the film myself, it was an incredible learning opportunity. I got to be in the room during the rehearsals and blocking with the director, cinematographer and actors.
And since Kit was the lead, his scenes were with Kathy Bates, Susan Sarandon, Michael Gambon, and Jessica Chastain to name a few of the star-studded cast. The film was also shot on film so that was an exciting process to witness.
To see how many hours would go into lighting a shot, the decisions to have a star like Jessica Chastain film all these scenes and then ultimately be edited out of the film, to really know what your vision is so completely and instinctively that you won’t proceed until it’s right.
That’s how Xavier Dolan works and it’s humbling, provocative and just really fucking cool to watch. Obviously I don’t compare the level I’m working at with Xavier’s – they are apples and oranges in terms of budget, scope and talent. I’m just really grateful for the opportunity to witness and work in that arena once in a while as it’s incredibly inspiring.
What next for Charlie David?
Charlie David: A camping trip with friends. I love the great outdoors. 😉 In my work life – there’s always lots of projects on the go. Right now I’m producing a dating show, a cooking show, 2 documentaries and writing my next scripted show. You can stay up to date with me on my social and website.