Since Stalking the Bogeyman is your latest production—now playing at New World Stages—can you describe the process of taking the initial inspiration, scripting the play, and translating it to the stage? How long did it take? Were there any obstacles you faced along the way?
You know I had that pull-up-on-the-side-of-the-road moment with Stalking the Bogeyman. Several days after, the story was still with me so I reached out to the producers of “This American Life,” sent several notes. A few weeks later, David Holthouse, whose story Stalking the Bogeyman is based on, reached out to me and said “I’m intrigued, let’s talk.” The story had the option to be a film twice, but it never went anywhere. David had been approached by some big studios that wanted to do all of these Hollywood-type things, and he kept saying no. But I was fortunate that David liked my initial ideas about the project. So then we met in New York, had a few other meetings, and he gave me the green light.
I then started talking to a few big writers about doing the adaptation, and hit some major roadblocks with their literary agents. It was like three, four weeks would go by and I wouldn’t receive a response, so I’d have to reach out to them and say, “Hey, are you going to respond?” So I just sat down with Santino Fontana, Shane Zeigler, and Shane Stokes, and I said, “Let’s just blueprint this. Let’s just structure it as a directorial exercise. I’ll learn more about the story if we start to put it on paper somehow—still with the intention that I would bring another writer on.” And six months went by and we said, “You know we have something here.” And we decided to keep it in-house, as it were.
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