Wednesday, August 26, 2020

|Podcast| Poor Greg Drowning - Jeffrey Scott Collins & Graham Sibley

Jeffrey Scott Collins, Photo Content from IMDB
Graham Sibley, Photo Credit to Alec Sibley

Jeffrey Scott Collins (Writer/Director/Producer) 
Jeffrey Scott Collins is a writer/director/producer who just completed his feature film debut, “Poor Greg Drowning”, a grounded comedy in the vein of “I Love You, Man”, which he wrote, directed, and produced. The film screened at 26 festivals around the world, winning thirteen awards including: Best Feature, Best Comedy, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Supporting Actress. Comedy Dynamics is releasing the film, worldwide, in August 2020. 

Jeff recently sold a movie to Hallmark, which he will write, called “Once Upon a Fall”, which will star Julie Gonzalo. He has another Hallmark project that he set up with Marvista called, “Summer Love in Positano”. 

Prior to these projects, Jeff wrote, directed, produced, and edited two thirty-minute short films entitled, “10 Years Later”, and, “Let It Bleed”. “10 Years Later”, a female driven action thrilled in the vein of the Jason Bourne movies, is being adapted into a TV series called, “One World”. 

Jeff began his film and TV career in finance, before transitioning into creative services at HBO. He then worked under the the tutelage of three writer/directors on their features as a Director’s Assistant, including John Hamburg on “Why Him?”, Luke Greenfield on “Let’s Be Cops”, and Victor Levin on “5 to 7”. Jeff ran Luke’s development company, WideAwake, and also did development for John’s Particular Pictures. Jeff then worked in feature development at Hasbro/Allspark Studios, and now runs Film & TV for Jake Stein’s new company, Scondo Productions, where he is developing and producing numerous film and TV projects. 

Raised in upstate New York, Jeff graduated from Boston College, and has taken film classes at NYU. He also completed the Summer Film Institute at UCLA when he made the move out to Los Angeles, where he currently resides.

Graham Sibley (Lead Actor/Executive Producer) 
Graham Sibley began his film and television career starring in the cult classic Zombie Honeymoon (Showtime), executive produced by John Landis. From there, he appeared in the Emmy-Award winning film Nanking (Sundance premiere), directed by two-time Academy Award Winner Bill Guttentag and starring Woody Harrelson. Other film credits include Debra Eisenstadt’s Before the Sun Explodes (SWXS Premiere), Clint Eastwood’s Sully starring Tom Hanks, The Honor List produced by Zoe Saldana and Liz Destro for Lionsgate, Sony’s Threshold and John Hindman's The Passing Parade and Blush (2019 Sundance Premiere) which will be released on April 10th, 2020. Other credits include guest starring and recurring roles on Fear The Walking Dead, Grey’s Anatomy, Aquarius, How to Get Away with Murder, The Newsroom, Criminal Minds, Jane the Virgin, Chicago Med, Bosch, The Affair, G.L.O.W. and most recently Dirty John, On Becoming A God In Central Florida and Dark/Web for which Graham has been pre-nominated for a 2020 Daytime Emmy (Outstanding Guest Performance in a Digital Series). In addition, Graham is also a founding member of Los Angeles' IAMA Theatre Company where he serves on the Board of Directors and is currently building the company's Education Outreach Platform. He currently lives in Los Angeles with his wife, screenwriter Marilyn Fu, and their twin boys, Lyon and K.P.

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POOR GREG DROWNING is a grounded edgy comedy about heartache, loss, depression, friendship, family, and love addiction. It’s about picking oneself up from rock bottom with the help of those closest to them. It explores looking in the mirror, and learning to forgive those that have hurt you, and acknowledging and taking responsibility for your own actions. 

I think what makes PGD so unique is that it has elements of a real comedy (grounded awkward comedy that was inspired by three great comedy directors that I worked for, Victor Levin, Luke Greenfield, and John Hamburg), but also has the heart and character of a true indie film. The struggles that the main character, Greg, goes through with love addiction are surprisingly untapped in comedies like this. We are hoping that this film will bring awareness to this addiction in a clever and entertaining way. In addition, the film was inspired by a very challenging time that I went through right after I graduated college. My high school sweetheart of five years and I broke up a week before graduation from college, which contributed to my first experience with depression and heartache (much like Greg). 

I believe this film encompasses the spirit of what makes film festivals and indie filmmaking so special. I saw Mark Duplass' incredibly inspirational speech at SXSW where he said, “There’s no excuse not to make films on weekends with friends’”. The next weekend, I shot a 5 min short film in two hours for $25 (the cost of a pizza for everyone) called GLIMPSES OF GREG. The film was accepted in to several great festivals, but I knew there was so much more of Greg’s story to tell. So, I wrote a feature called POOR GREG DROWNING and used the short film as the first scene of the movie. And I couldn’t be happier with how it all turned out. 

I hope you guys enjoy this film as much as we enjoyed making it. It has been a true labor of love for everyone involved, and we are extremely excited screen it with all of you!

Greg is a love addict whose girlfriend left him for their couples therapist. Depressed, heartbroken, and unemployed, Greg must find a roommate to help pay rent. But Greg scares all potential roommates away, except for a girl named Peyton who moves in and whom Greg falls madly in love with.

Photo Content from Jeffrey Scott Collins
Greg is angry, depressed, and heartbroken. He recently proposed to his long time girlfriend and she didn’t say yes. Instead, she revealed that she has been sleeping with their couples therapist, Dr. Wilbon, and that she is leaving him for the love guru. 

Greg didn’t handle the news well. And he has been struggling ever since. Not only is he on the verge of a colossal breakdown, he is broke, unemployed, and now has to find a roommate to help pay the rent to avoid eviction. The only problem is, any potential roommate that meets Greg, immediately (and usually literally) dead-sprints it in the opposite direction. Greg is a good guy who means well, but he is a bit socially awkward and lacks a filter of any kind. Those qualities, combined with his current state of mind, don’t bode well for finding a future co-habitant. 

Miraculously, Greg receives a random Craig’s List inquiry from someone named Peyton who is moving to Los Angeles and needs a place to live. They offer to PayPal Greg the money immediately and move in the next day. Greg, of course, accepts the offer. 

The only problem is, when Peyton shows up, Greg finds out that she is a girl. Which typically wouldn’t be a problem, but Greg’s longtime best friend, Paul, strongly warned Greg not live with a girl because of what just happened to him. And Greg knows Paul is right. But Greg doesn’t listen to Paul or his own mind, because Peyton is fucking cute. Girl-next-door cute. With a sarcastic and dirty sense of humor. And Greg fell in love with her the second he opened that door. And thus, he ignores Paul and his mind and let’s her move in. 

In the rest of the film, we see how Greg deals with his depression, heartache and bitterness through the help of his family, friends, and psychiatrist, all while living with a complete stranger whom he is madly in love with. Oh, and there is a twist. A big twist that you rarely, if ever, find in an R-rated comedy with romance. Enjoy! 
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