An invitation to a mysterious theatre piece called “The Show” sends four best friends down a rabbit hole of mistrust and madness as they try to figure out who are the actors, who is the audience, who is doing this to them, and why.
Acclaimed filmmaker Dorie Barton follows up her hit indie comedy GIRL FLU (2016) with a delicious, trippy Thanksgiving tale of twisted morality and tested friendships. In this inverted escape room mystery, the only thing holding these friends together is the fractured belief that there must be some kind of logic to the absurdity.
WELCOME TO THE SHOW won “Best Feature Film” at the Big Apple Film Festival and has received many other accolades and awards over its 2021 festival tour including “Best Director” and “Best Ensemble Cast” at Big Bear Film Summit, and “Best Local Film” and “Best Local Band” at the Richmond International Film and Music Festival where it was the Opening Night Feature. “Barton’s writing and directing really shines in Welcome to the Show,” notes Council of Zoom. And Reel News Daily wrote, “The cast is extraordinary. Welcome To The Show is the epitome of independent film in the best ways.”
Barton’s sophomore film does to its viewers what “The Show” does to its chosen audience. In an era of unrivaled uncertainty, WELCOME TO THE SHOW explores a once familiar world made suddenly alien. The breakdown of sense and meaning among the friends is echoed all around us. For the characters in the film, and for us, many truths are possible. In fact, it’s possible that the true meaning of “The Show” is that now it’s your turn to become “The Show.”
Writer-director-producer Dorie Barton explains, “We began the production two years ago in a time of innocence and landed in a time of disorientation and fear. For me, the film has come to represent that fall from innocence, not just for four boys becoming men on their way home from ‘The Show,’ but for all of us having to navigate insecurity and isolation. How are we going to escape? Will life ever be the same again? Is going ‘back’ even an option?”
Producer S.C.V. Taylor of Monopol Films adds, “The world, like our film, presents us with so many questions, and so few answers. This film leaves the audience with an opportunity to consider how we make our own meaning even when we suspect there is none.”
WELCOME TO THE SHOW was shot entirely on location in Richmond, VA, and was written specifically for Barton’s acting students at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) where she teaches acting for the camera. The production began with a brisk 10-day shooting schedule in November of 2019 and was completed during the lockdown of 2020.
WELCOME TO THE SHOW stars Richard Follin, Dillon Douglasson, Keegan Garant, and Christopher Martin; Cinematographer – Alex Kent; Editors – Dorie Barton & Tyler Scheerschmidt; Soundtrack Composers – Andrew Bonieskie & Dillon Douglasson; Co-Executive Producer – Stamatios Tom Hiotis; Executive Producer – Eric Dexter; Produced by – Dorie Barton & S.C.V. Taylor; Written & Directed by Dorie Barton