Over the years, TV audiences have seen producer/director/writer Jack Kenny work his creative magic on such shows as Caroline in the City, Titus, The Book of Daniel and Warehouse 13. A graduate of New York’s prestigious Julliard School, he is looking forward to revisiting his theatrical roots next month when he takes part in Sci-Fest. The festival, which will be held at The Acme Theater in Los Angeles, will present nine Sci-Fi-themed one act plays, including those based on stories by legendary writers Ray Bradbury and Ursula Le Guin, along with some later-evening comedic entertainment. Kenny’s involvement in Sci-Fest came about thanks to its founder and one of its producers, David Dean Bottrell.
“David is an old friend of mine and someone who I’ve known pretty much since I’ve been in Los Angeles, so at least 20 years, and he’s always been really interested in Science Fiction,” says Kenny. “We’ve talked about a couple of pilot ideas that he’s wanted to pitch, and not too long ago he came to me and said, ‘I want to do this Sci-Fest thing.’
“David really beat the bushes until the last possible second and managed to raise the $80,000 to produce the festival. He’s sort of the [theatrical producer] Joseph Papp of Sci-Fest. I helped as much as I could, as did all of his friends, in getting the word out, and then David asked me if I wanted to direct one of the plays. I said, ‘Sure,’ and he sent me this one act play, Forwarding Address by JP Nickel, who, coincidentally, was one of my writers on Warehouse 13. So I’m directing JP’s one act, which happens to open the first night of Sci-Fest.”
With Forwarding Address, Kenny will be directing a group of five actors, many of whom have prior Sci-Fi connections. “It’s a great cast,” he enthuses, “I’m working with David Blue [Stargate Universe], Julie McNiven [Stargate Universe, Supernatural]. Madison McLaughlin [Supernatural], Angeline-Rose Troy [Ever Last] and Greg Duke [Lake Death]. The play itself is about two couples on New Year’s Eve who are visited by a specter from the future that delivers them a warning. Whether or not they believe the warning and which couple it’s meant for is still in question.
“The story is very sweet, maybe 12 minutes long, and it has humor in it as well as some darkness and tragedy. It’s going to be a fun little romp. Also, it’s not this huge, scary insurmountable piece, so we can take our time with it. The most important thing, once everyone learns their lines, will just be having a good time with it, and I’m sure they will.”
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