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An Interview with Kathi Lehmer, Director of Mama and Damian

by Dale Pierce

October 2007

For films directed by Kathi Lehmer
on (re)Search my Trash
click here!

 

For an interview with Kathi Lehmer from June 2009, click here!

 

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1. Recently, you completed Mama & Damian, which is an absolutely bizarre film, so tell people about it.

 

You say bizarre, Dale, I say itís just the stuff that runs around in my head.

Iím a pretty exaggerated thinker. I also had some help from W.G. White, who plays the bear-boy. Heís a bit cracked as well. Itís a story about a 12-year-old half-human, half-bear boy named Damian, his dominatrix mother, and the rest of his unusual family. 

As with most kids, Damian starts getting into trouble as he approaches adolescence. He befriends a redneck kid from the neighborhood and all hell breaks loose after that.

 

2. The reaction has been favorable in spite of the low budget and the weird plot?

 

Oh yes. People laugh like crazy at the funniest scenes. People love Damian the bear boy. Best of all, Iíve had people quote lines from the film back to me.

 

3. There are some webpages up devoted to this and if no where it can be ordered, right?

 

Yep Iím doing a cottage industry thing right now. You can send a check or money order for $20 made out to Kathleen Lehmer

Send to:

Trinka Five Films

PO Box 30950

Wilmington, DE 19805-7950

 

Or go to the website

www.trinkafivefilms.com

 

I also have two myspace sites

www.myspace.com/mamadamian

www.myspace.com/trinkafive

 

4. You have had some underground and film fest showings of this?

 

It premiered at the Newark Film Festival in September and showed again as part of Best of the Fest.

Iím entering into more festivals and may have some more local showings.

Iíve showed it to small groups at the studio where I edited the film, Immagine Studios in Wilmington, DE.

 

5. The bear-boy is uncanny. Tell me, since he has a Nazi grandfather hiding out in this plot, in the basement in this film, is bear-boy some type of Nazi experiment? Cloning like Mengele might have tried?

 

Thatís a good theory. If you look closely youíll catch a glimpse of Damianís father.

The line right before he appears is Papa died.

 

Feeling lucky ?
Want to
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The links below
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just there!!!

Find Kathi Lehmer
at the amazons ...

USA  amazon.com

Great Britain (a.k.a. the United Kingdom)  amazon.co.uk

Germany (East AND West)  amazon.de

Looking for imports ?
Find Kathi Lehmer here ...

Thailand  eThaiCD.com
Your shop for all things Thai

Something naughty ?
(Must be over 18 to go there !)

x-rated  find Kathi Lehmer at adultvideouniverse.com

6. Didn't the actor who plays the bear-boy get hit by a car while you were filming?

 

Yep, slammed into the pavement head first.

He was on the way to a shoot. After he got hit he couldnít remember anything except that Kathi was waiting for him.

The EMTís asked who I was but W.G. couldnít remember.

 

7. What happened, was he wearing the bear suit and did some idiot driving stare at him, do a doubletake and plow into him without even thinking?

 

Yeah, weíll go with that version.

 

8. You acted in this, wrote it, directed it and have done a load of other activities to bring this film to light. Was it intentional, taking on all these roles, so you would get the job done right or was that just how it panned out?

 

I definitely did it that way to get the job done right, but I learned that I will have to delegate more during the next production. Otherwise, Iíll be in the hospital afterwards.

 

9. You are presently considering a vampire production next?

 

Yes, scouting locations and looking for actors.

This production will be way more baroque and the humor will be much more subversive.

 

10. You use volunteer actors, correct?

 

So far, that is correct. I wish I could pay everyone, but my budgets are tiny.

 

11. Some did an amazing job in Mama & Damian, considering they had such limited experience.

 

For the most part, I cast pretty close to the personalities of the actors. Some of the characters were actually written with specific people in mind.

W.G. White, the bear-boy, was always the bear-boy. I wrote Wolfgang, the pansexual-troublemaker nephew for Ashley Cleaver; same for Gunter, Mamaís love interest, played by Todd Michael Smith.

David Robinson, who plays Opa, the Nazi in the basement, was not like his character at all.

He had sent me his headshot and his face was precisely what I had envisioned for Opa. I explained to him on the phone that he would have to wear a corset and boxer shorts. He was game. When he showed up, he was squeaky-clean, looked like he was going to go play golf. He was so sweet, I thought How in the hell will this nice man be able to play such an evil character?

Well, he pulled it off, W.G. was scared of him. lol

David is a seasoned stage actor and works for the government in Washington, D.C.

 

12. I personally liked the guy running the strip club.

 

Yes, and I picked him up in a mall parking lot. lol

The actor I originally had for the part disappeared so I was frantically searching for a replacement two days before the shoot.

I was waiting for one of my friends to come out of the store and heard this booming voice. I looked over in the direction of the voice and thought Holy crap, thatís him!

I ran over and introduced myself to the Reverend Thomas Brown.

I asked him if he wanted to be in a movie. He never missed a beat, he simply said Yes. It turns out he had worked in the movies in the 1940ís and had also traveled the country doing music.

Heís a treasure. He provided his own costumes, which were very snazzy indeed.

 

13. I imagine you have a couple interesting stories surrounding the filming of Mama & Damian, aside from your actor getting hit by a car.

 

Well, the really juicy stuff I canít talk about, but letís say there were some complicated interpersonal relationships going on. lol

Besides that I was in a car accident as well, I got rear-ended by a tractor trailer. I was knocked out, donít remember the accident. I was in some kind of weird zone for a couple of months. Actually Iím not sure I ever came out of it.

I think maybe I died and this is just my ghost pretending that I didnít. lol

 

14. You played a pretty convincing dominatrix on one hand, but a loving mother on the other. How did you come up with the balance for this character?

 

I see those two roles as one and the same. Both require strength and an unfailing ability to decide what is best for someone.

It takes a strong mother to pull a knife on a kid who is threatening your child. It takes an equally strong person to figure out that someone might enjoy licking your boots. lol

 

15. Have you patterned yourself after any specific director?

 

No, but having watched so many films, I canít help but be influenced. I love Stanley Kubrickís work, especially Lolita. David Lynch is a longtime favorite. I went to the same art school in Philadelphia that he did, The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Perhaps a bit of his spirit had been left there when I attended.

My number one favorite director is Federico Fellini. More current favorites are Wes Anderson and Miranda July. For comic timing you canít beat Billy Wilder. I also love Lloyd Kauffman. Iím all over the place, many different eras, styles, and genres fascinate me.

 

16. You do tend to lean toward the weird side though?

 

Oh yeah, everything else bores me.

 

17. You remind me a little of Waters, Fellini or maybe Jess Franco minus the bigger budget.

 

I like writing characters that go right up to the edge of doing something really heinous and then sometimes cross over the line. I like presenting it all in an elegant setting.

 

18. You have also considered a sequel with the bear boy again?

 

Oh yes, when the time is right. I would like to have my core actors back though. Iím not going to pull a Bewitched with a brand new Darren.

 

19. You designed the bear boy costume yourself?

 

Yes, you could say that. I bought a pattern for a multiple-animal costume. The only thing I changed was the ears. I made them bigger. Bigger ears look cuter.

 

20. Didn't some other people help with clothing and set designs?

 

A lot of people helped, put their own costumes together or donated stuff I could use. I found a lot of stuff in thrift shops. I bought Mamaís corset online. The furries' costumes are just giant stuffed animals that I gutted and added zippers and stuff. Bunny Girlís costume was a big pink stuffed rabbit one of my friends had dug out of the trash. I used the bear-boy pattern for the body and the rabbitís head with the face cut off. My ex-husband helped me get the look of the bear-boyís family home together. I was moving into the apartment and had the whole place re-painted, floors put down, a chandelier in the living room Ö so that the set would look right. I have a very cooperative landlord. lol

 

21. Anything more you would like to touch on concerning your films?

 

With any film, my goal is to make something entertaining and unique. I think I accomplished this with Mama and Damian. I also want to mention Jeremiah Thomson. Heís a musician from New Orleans who wrote all the music. I think that was key in pulling the whole production together.

 

22. What interests do you have aside from film?

 

Bondage and painting.

 

23. Closing comments.

 

Order a copy of Mama and Damian. It will be a unique experience!

 

Go here for the trailers:

http://youtube.com/watch?v=Yt6_iFl4-GM

and

http://youtube.com/watch?v=kTGIoc_8nvU

 

© by Dale Pierce


Legal note: (re)Search my Trash cannot
and shall not be held responsible for
content of sites from a third party.




Thanks for watching !!!



 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD

 

 

Stell Dir vor, Deine Lieblingsseifenoper birgt eine tiefere Wahrheit ...
... und stell Dir vor, der Penner von der U-Bahnstation hat doch recht ...
... und dann triffst Du auch noch die Frau Deiner (feuchten) Tršume ...

 

Und an diesem Tag geht natŁrlich wieder einmal die Welt unter!!!

 

Bauliche Angelegenheiten
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