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Oscars 2017

ONES TO WATCH – Jimmy Fowlie

WHERE YOU’VE SEEN HIM: As an alum of The Groundlings Sunday Company and recent cast member of the CBS Diversity Showcase. On his comedy web-series “Go-Go Boy Interrupted” starring as Danny, a go-go boy in Los Angeles who finds himself phased out of his profession when he turns 30 years old. The first season proved such a hit, it lead to a successful Kickstarter campaign that funded the second season and attracted a cast of notables such as Brittany Morris from tv’s “Glee” and RuPaul’s Drag Race star William Belli.

WHERE YOU NEED TO WATCH HIM NOW: Starring in his one-man show “So Long, Boulder City” at the Celebration Theater in Hollywood. We know you’ve all seen the Oscar-winning hit film “La La Land”. Fowlie’s show spoofs the one-woman show of the same name that Emma Stone’s character ‘Mia’ wanted to put on (but which nobody came to). Fowlie gives the audience some hilarious back-story about Mia’s rather privileged life growing up, as well as what might have been in her show. In one particularly hilarious segment, Mia describes the humiliation of being passed over for the college musical (“I wasn’t even in the ensemble, which is the place they put the untalented people with good bodies”). “The show is beyond stupid,” Fowlie says with a laugh. “It’s really silly and fun and I get to scare people with my comedy.”

WHY YOU NEED TO CATCH HIM: Fowlie’s show has proved such a hit with critics and fans alike that the show’s run has been extended TWICE and is selling out fast. “The intention was to do it once as a joke with friends, cause I didnt’ think anyone would care,” says Fowlie. The show got such amazing buzz that Variety, People, Extra, Huffington Post and more all ran stories on it.

EMMA STONE’S MOM GIVES HER THUMBS UP: Emma Stone’s MOM even showed up for a performance! “Emma’s managers reached out to me and said her mother wanted to come,” he says, clearly delighted. “I was weirded out cause my own parents don’t even like my comedy, it upsets them”, he says deadpan. “Here I am playing this woman, and it’s her daughter and its so wacky and so beyond anything my parents would want to see. But she was the coolest.”

EVEN JIMMY IS SURPRISED BY ALL THE LOVE: “When I’m playing the character Mia, she’s this kinda desperate actress and she’s so delusional,” Fowlie says with a laugh. “People (in the audience) are so grossed out by me. I say these annoying things and sometimes people are groaning at me because I’m obnoxious.”

“Even though my show is kinda like poking fun at the movie and poking fun at the character….the dirty little secret is I LOVED La La Land”

TAKE IT EASY LA LA LAND FANS: Though Fowlie’s performance pokes fun at “La La Land” and it’s rather large plot holes, it’s all done with love. “Even though my show is kinda like poking fun at the movie and poking fun at the character….the dirty little secret is I LOVED La La Land” Die-hard fans of the flick will be glad to know that Emma Stone walks away without a scratch as well. “I’m not doing an Emma Stone impression,” Fowlie insists. “ It’s more my take on the character. And also I didn’t want to shave my chest hair. It was an artistic decision.”

MOVING ON UP: In a turn of events that would make Mia jump for joy, “So Long, Boulder City” is moving to New York City! “It’s so funny because, I want to say this show to NYC is a ‘dream come true’ but in all seriousness that was SO far away from a reality for me,” says a genuinely humbled Fowlie. “This whole experience has been incredible and I am in shock.” New Yorkers will be able to see the show starting December 7 at SubCulture (45 Bleecker Street, New York NY 10012). Tickets can be purchased using this link.

You can follow Fowlie on his YouTube Channel, or on Twitter and Instagram @JimmyFowlie


Basking in the glow of Moonlight

An independent movie about poor, gay, black boys has won Best Picture. Let that sink in for a minute. Don’t let the whole mix up of envelopes and La La Land kefuffle take away from the shine surrounding this victory. “Moonlight” isn’t the first gay-themed film to ever be nominated. Critically-acclaimed movies like “Boys Don’t Cry,” “Philadelphia,” “Brokeback Mountain,” and “Milk” all told stories of LGBTQ characters — some based on real individuals, others entirely fictional — as they encounter discrimination and fight against it. But its the first time an LGBTQ film has taken home the top prize.

It is a largely autobiographical story adapted from the play “In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue” written by Tarell Alvin McCraney. The film chronicles the life of a black child, from his boyhood in a rough Miami neighborhood, through adulthood.

The film comes at a pivotal time for both the black and LGBTQ communities. The last few years have been ones in which Americans were inundated with images of violence and police brutality against the black community. So much furor from these incidents arose that it sparked the Black Lives Matter movement.

Blacks within the LGBTQ community have not fared much better. Incidents of violence against trans women of color have risen at an alarming rate. The newly elected President of the United States has made it one of his first priorities to rescind the rights of transgender students to use gender neutral bathrooms in schools. There is a palpable dread that further efforts to rescind the rights of LGBTQ Americans is next.

Perhaps the film’s success proves that it is not merely a film about blacks or gays. It encompasses a number of themes including poverty, family, drug addiction, identity, love, isolation and acceptance.

But now that “Moonlight” has that claimed the distinction of being “Best Picture”, what next?

Winning the Best Picture Oscar has given “Moonlight” a distinction which will enable it to be included in college curriculum. It now occupies a foot place in history.

As gut-wrenching as the events in the film itself are, the story still ends on an uplifting note. Perhaps that is what we need to focus on most in these trying times . As much as certain people try to silence our voices from telling our stories, they have only been proven to be all the more worth hearing.