Gregory G. Allen’s “Hiding In Daylight” begins film production

"Hiding In Daylight" promotional graphic
"Hiding In Daylight" promotional graphic
Hiding in Daylight to hit movie festival circuit in 2019

Theater and film have met. The LGBT dystopian tale Hiding in Daylight has begun filming. New Jersey Playwright Gregory G. Allen wrote the story as both a one act play and a screenplay. After filmmaker Cheryl Allison read the script, she knew she wanted to make the film. Casting includes actors Jim Newman, Judy McLane, Julee Cerda, and Gary Hilborn starring in the short film.

New Jersey Playwright Gregory G. Allen wrote the play and the screenplay.
New Jersey Playwright Gregory G. Allen wrote the play and the screenplay.

Allison’s film company WOW Films and Allen’s company ASD Media & Entertainment have co-produced the upcoming short. Producer Carina Rush and Allison will direct. It will hit the festival circuit in 2019.

The synopsis

In the movie, there is a gay purge in a dystopian future. And two couples who secretly meet once a week to reminisce about their former openly gay lives must decide if their clandestine meetings are worth risking their lives. In one night, secrets are revealed, emotions run high, and mistakes cause for a catastrophic event.

As an out lesbian, director Cheryl Allison was immediately drawn to the story of Hiding in Daylight. “It is a very topical and unsettling story. Much like The Handmaid’s Tale, it shows us how easily persecution of marginalized groups can be justified in the name of religion or patriotism.  I volunteered down on the Texas border helping reunite immigrant families being released from one of the detention centers. It was a horrible reminder of how quickly human rights can be stripped away. So while this dystopian storyline is fiction based, all one has to do is place the story in 1933 and suddenly the fiction turns into a dark, grim reality. My hope is that the film will evoke an uncomfortable truth and warning that when people are complacent history can repeat itself.”

Allen’s play has been read in New Jersey earlier this year as well as around the country to use as a conversation starter about the daily discriminations taking place against the LGBT community. There are proposed initiatives and bills at the local, state and federal levels that threaten the equal rights of the LGBT community. Recently an elderly lesbian couple were denied the right to live as cohabitants in a retirement home said Allen. The reasoning was based on religious freedom. Allison (who is also a Broadway and film actress) and Rush worked with Allen to condense the one act play into a short screenplay. Executive and Associate Producers stepped in to finance the film along with a successful online crowdfunding effort.

The cast of "Hiding In Daylight."
The cast of “Hiding In Daylight.”

“The response from this project since the first reading in New Jersey has been amazing,” says Allen. “I am thankful to the online support we’ve received about a story I truly feel could happen if we’re not careful. I am especially grateful to our executive producers Brian Smith, Jamie Fowler, and Anthony DiBella as this story could never be told without them.”

The piece is Allen’s way of using his pen as activism. He believes having so many outlets to share the story will only aid in that advocacy. The three main producers (one gay, one lesbian, and one straight), have been careful in building their team to show a diverse array of players all coming together for a common goal. The film is about equality, discrimination, but mostly love — which is universal.

The cast of Hiding in Daylight

Julee Cerda (Linda) is an American actress most recently seen in the Broadway revival of Children of a Lesser God directed by Tony Award winner, Kenny Leon. On television, she has guest starred on Showtime’s Homeland as Press Secretary Reiko Umon, and has made countless other appearances on hit shows like Orange is the New Black, House of Cards, Billions, and Kevin Can Wait. On film, Julee can be seen in Morten Tyldum’s Passengers and Nancy Meyers’ The Intern.

Gary Hilborn (Paul) is an actor whose television credits include recurring roles on The Blacklist, and All My Children. He has made guest appearances on several other hit series. They include, The Sinner, Quantico, and Blue Bloods. Recent films include the award-winning feature Jane Wants a Boyfriend (starring Eliza Dushku) and the romantic comedy In Stereo. Gary has performed in numerous stage productions and received a 2013 “Best Actor” nomination from BroadwayWorld for his work as “Eddie Carbone” in Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge. He was seen in the New York premiere of Carol Carpenter’s play Sweet, Sweet Spirit and he originated he role of “Mickey” in The Love Junkie of Hell’s Kitchen.

Jim Newman (Scott) is a Broadway veteran having been in the original casts of Hands On A Hard BodyCurtains and Steel Pier. Other Broadway shows include The Who’s TommySunset Boulevard and performing alongside the iconic Liza Minnelli in Minnelli on Minnelli. In addition to his numerous National Tours and Regional Theatre credits, Jim is currently touring the world as the “Cowboy” in the famous musical group Village People. Film/TV credits include After Forever, Bromance, My Gay Roommate and The Big Gay Musical. Jim is a strong voice in the LGBT community and participates in the LGBT youth “It Gets Better Project.”

Judy McLane (Val) performed over 4000 performances on Broadway in Mamma Mia! as well as numerous other Broadway and National Tours. She created the role of “Vienna” in the Off-Broadway production of Johnny Guitar, earning her a Drama Desk Award Nomination for Best Actress and a Drama League Honor. Most recently, she portrayed the iconic Maria Callas in Terrence McNally’s Master Class. She was in the award-winning LGBT feature film Were the World Mine. She tours the country doing concerts and cabaret, and has been seen on television in The Blacklist, Darla on Another World, and Guiding Light.

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