Worried that her life was becoming a showbiz cliche, the NYU-Tisch
grad set out to make her own destiny by writing herself a lead role.
That project, a grounded romantic comedy titled "Mary/Homer," is now
accepting donations via popular crowdfunding platform Indiegogo.
A bubbly 29 year-old redhead who has appeared on "Desperate
Housewives" and in several national commercial campaigns for brands
such as Target, Lowe's and UPS, Emmer was inspired to take charge of
her own career by the early films of Lena Dunham ("Tiny Furniture")
and the Duplass brothers ("The Puffy Chair"), whose DIY attitudes
led to bigger things.
She wrote the original screenplay for "Mary/Homer" in a mere 10
days, then spent six months honing the script with the helpful
advice of friends who are working writers in Hollywood.
In a boon to female filmmakers, Emmer will direct the $30,000 movie
and star alongside Josh McDermitt, who plays Dr. Eugene Porter on
AMC's hit series "The Walking Dead."
The cast also includes comedian Adam Lustick, who has recurred on
"The Office" and "Punk'd," as well as Nikki DeLoach, who plays Lacey
Hamilton on MTV's "Awkward." The producers plan to cast several
other notable names as well as a handful of rising stand-up
comedians, while McDermitt will use his past experience on "Last
Comic Standing" to inform his character.
In true indie spirit, "Mary/Homer" will chronicle the struggle of
young professionals to find themselves and explore what it takes to
change when life has got you down.
The character-driven story follows live-in-nanny Mary (Emmer) and
struggling comedian Homer (McDermitt) as they meet at a young boy's
birthday party and are both fired by the end of the day. With
nowhere to go, they're forced to house-sit together for Homer's
successful yet pompous childhood friend (Lustick).
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Though Mary and Homer get off to a rocky start, they
quickly realize the gravity of their shared situation. Will this odd
couple help each other overcome their painful pasts and possibly
fall in love or will their time together end in disaster?
"Mary/Homer" boasts the support of Lance Johnson, an executive at
Escape Artists who will serve as a creative consultant on the
project. Johnson has produced several award-winning short films that
premiered at prominent festivals, and he recently served as an
associate producer on the Meryl Streep-Tommy Lee Jones comedy "Hope
Additionally, Meg Ramsay, who served as an editor on Dave Grohl's
documentary "Sound City," will supervise the editing process.
The "Mary/Homer" filmmakers aim to raise $30,000
before Jan. 2 and so far, they've received $2,570. Unlike its rival
Kickstarter, Indiegogo allows filmmakers to keep all funds raised,
even if they fail to meet their goal. Indiegogo contributions will
go towards paying for the crew, production equipment, locations,
filming permits, insurance, craft services, music rights and
The filmmakers are also offering perks to "Mary/Homer" supporters,
including personalized audio and video messages, the opportunity to
name a character, lunch with the cast and producers, set visits,
personalized script notes, a small role in the movie, associate
producer and executive producer credits and a "Walking Dead" poster
signed by the cast of Season 4.
While thousands of projects vie for attention on Indiegogo and
Kickstarter, some of which hail from millionaires like Zach Braff
and Rob Thomas, "Mary/Homer" is a labor of love that is worthy of
support from fans of independent film. After all, what would pop
culture look like if Lena Dunham or the Duplass brothers didn't
throw caution to the wind and make their own indie movies against
all odds? You can help finance "Mary/Homer" by clicking here.
[By Jeff Sneider]