COMEDY Festival 1st Scene Reading: Mad Hadley, by Jodi Lustig

After a clash with a client goes viral, a lawyer infamous for defending despicable men volunteers at a women’s legal aid clinic run by her uber-feminist mother, hoping to turn over a new leaf without tearing down the whole family tree.


Narrator: Val Cole
Mad: Hannah Ehman
Kailey: Kyana Teresa

Director Biography – Kathryn Schott (FAREWELL MR. BAKER)

Mr. Baker marks Kathryn Schott’s directing debut. She is a recent graduate of UCLA’s school of Theater, Film and Television with an MFA in acting. A performer, writer, and visual artist by trade, she jumped at the opportunity to get behind the camera and work on this brilliant piece of comedy written and produced by Michael Bauer. She’s grateful to have had such a talented and dedicated cast to work with and will continue working in comedy.

Director Statement

We follow the wisdom of Mel Brooks, “Good taste is the enemy of comedy.”

Director Biography – Keith Stoute (LIVING WITH THE DEAD)

In 2005 Keith had a lucid dream and turned this vision in to a script for what became Living With the Dead. Shooting commenced in 2006 and completed in 2019, with post production completed in 2020.

Keith Stoute is founder and president of Visual Antidote, a boutique IT consulting firm and software manufacturer with customers all over the world. He is a serial tech entrepreneur and inventor whose products have been used by tens of thousands of customers around the world.

Director Statement

Living With the Dead has been a passion project of mine for well over a decade. I hope everyone finds this to be a unique and original blend of comedy, drama and horror genres. Ultimately this film is about dealing with a difficult life experience and growing as a person because of it.

As production spanned nearly 13 years I was able to film the main actor as both a young and middle-aged man, no small feat-feat for an independent short. I’d be thrilled if you watch and enjoy this film.

Short Film: LIVING WITH THE DEAD, 15min., Canada, Comedy

Heartbroken after a breakup, Theo looks for a new place to live and settles into a downtrodden apartment which he shares with its current tenant – a zombie. Theo struggles to find motivation, while his living-dead roommate provides both solace and danger. Will he be eaten, or has he roomed with the ultimate drinking buddy? In this dark comedy, that which does not eat you makes you stronger!

Director Biography – Muhammad K. Smith (STUCK)

Muhammad K. Smith is a South Korean filmmaker based in Seoul. His short film, A Bitter Cold (2016), received the Best Short Film Award at the Korea Youth Film Festival and the Best Self-Portrait Award at the Mise-en-scène Short Film Festival. His latest short, Stuck (2019), received both the Audience Award for Short Film and Best Short Film at the Bucheon International Fantastic Film Festival and is continuing its festival run in 2019-2020. Currently, he is preparing his feature debut with Ham, a horror film set in South Korea.

Director Statement

Two men are stuck. One, penetrated by a tall steel pipe. The other, immobilized by the weight of his conscience. As the two ponder the most reasonable course of action to take in a highly absurd debate, I hope to deconstruct the accepted code of ethical behavior while playfully stretching the limits of the audience’s patience.