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OCTOBER 2, 2023






New York, NY (October 2, 2023) — “xXPonyBoyDerekXx,” a boundary-breaking digital play fusing theater, film, and mixed digital media into an epic multi-week online event, will unfold across the internet beginning Monday, October 2nd, it was announced today by executive producer John Cameron Mitchell and producer Arterial Projects.

Written by Gage Tarlton and co-directed by Mr. Tarlton and Carlos Cardona, “xXPonyBoyDerekXx” follows the journey of an 18-year-old OnlyFans creator in real-time as he navigates a fraught path of autonomy, capitalism, sexuality, and survival amid the demands of physical commodification in a virtual world. Told through OnlyFans and X posts, “xXPonyBoyDerekXx” is an incendiary coming-of-age story detailing how the internet distorts reality and leaves a mark on the young and on-line body. Subscribe at OnlyFans.com/xXPonyBoyDerekXx.

“Gage Tarlton hacks the commercial source code of the OnlyFans hi-tech strip club to craft a totally new kind of humane storytelling. It flips the camera back onto the viewer to force them to experience the actual humanity behind digital sex work,” said Executive Producer John Cameron Mitchell. “Finally! Young intelligent filmmakers and theater-makers subvert the Porn Industrial Complex for the purpose of empathy!”

The protagonist of “xXPonyBoyDerekXx” will be played by an up-and-coming viral internet star whose identity won’t be revealed until the final scenes. OnlyFans superstar, community advocate, and self-proclaimed “queer, sober, Mexican cabron” Boomer Banks is set to co-star.

“xXPonyBoyDerekXx” will feature scenic design by Ana Novačić, costume design by Catharina Schürenberg, art direction by Sydney Buchan, and original music by Daniel Schlossberg. Brayden Simpson serves as line producer and Brian Sabowski is the unit production manager. The intimacy team is Teniece Divya Johnson (Intimacy Consultant) and Marcus Watson (Intimacy Coordinator). Casting is by Victor Vazquez, CSA. Creative campaign direction and design is by BLT Communications (most recently Barbie, Asteroid City, Past Lives).


GAGE TARLTON (Playwright & Co-Director) is a playwright and multimedia artist from North Carolina. His writing interrogates content and form through complex stories about queerness, sex, and internet culture. Gage’s work has been developed with La Mama ETC, Victory Gardens Theater, The Kennedy Center, PlayMakers Repertory Company, Queen City New Play Initiative, and Kenan Theater Company.  He was a finalist for the 2022 Cross + The Blank Theatre’s Future of Playwriting Prize, a 2019 Kennedy Center Playwriting Fellow, a 2023 finalist and 2020 semifinalist for The O’Neill’s National Playwrights Conference, and a 2023 semifinalist for the Seven Devils Playwrights Conference. He is a member of the Dramatist Guild and is represented by Farrah Cukor at United Talent Agency.

CARLOS CARDONA (Co-Director) is an award-winning Colombian-American director and cinematographer from New York.  He has been active in the commercial and documentary spaces for over 15 years. His work includes two feature films, Second Chance (2016) and Scenes from a Breakup (2018). Carlos has shot numerous feature documentaries including the acclaimed Netflix hip-hop documentary Stretch & Bobbito: Radio That Changed Lives (2015); Mixtape, the upcoming story about the history of mixtapes for Def Jam; and Discovery+’s They Call Him Mostly Harmless. Emerging from the punk scene in NYC in the mid-00’s, he is particularly interested in generating stories about identity, race, class, and their intersection with American culture. Cardona wrote and directed the episodic pilot, Chiqui, based off his parents’ experience immigrating to the US from Colombia in 1987, which had its world premiere at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival.

JOHN CAMERON MITCHELL (Executive Producer) wrote and starred in the rock musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch which brought him two Tony Awards on Broadway – Best Revival of a Musical and a Special Tony for Performance. For his film adaptation of Hedwig he was named Best Director at the 2001 Sundance Festival and garnered a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor. He appeared in the original productions of Big River, Six Degrees of Separation, The Destiny of Me, Hello Again and The Secret Garden. He also wrote/directed the films Shortbus (2006), Rabbit Hole (2010, Oscar nomination for Nicole Kidman) and Neil Gaiman’s How to Talk to Girls at Parties. On TV (this century) he’s performed in “The Sandman”, “Girls”, “Shrill”, “Mozart in the Jungle”, “Vinyl”, “The Good Fight”, “Yellowjackets”, “City on Fire”, and as Joe Exotic in “Joe Vs Carole”. He’s created two scripted podcast series – the musical Anthem: Homunculus starring Glenn Close, Patti Lupone and Laurie Anderson; and the upcoming Cancellation Island starring Holly Hunter.

BOOMER BANKS (“Aaron Channing”) is a DJ, community advocate, and content creator based in NYC. He is Mexican born and proud of it; he finds joy in exploring the arts.

ARTERIAL PROJECTS (Producer) is the New York City-based producing practice of Adam Rodner and Ahmad Simmons. Its focus is on daring commercial ventures across theater, film, and digital media — with emphases on new economic models, audience expansion, and work that synthesizes next-gen media, performing arts, politics, intervention, and scandal. Upcoming and recent projects include Gage Tarlton’s transmedia play xXPonyBoyDerekXx, Annie Hamilton’s Looking for Papa (Cherry Lane), and shorts Ringing Rocks (dir. Gus Reed) and Supern***a (dir. Daddy Ramanazi). https://arterial-projects.com

VICTOR VAZQUEZ, CSA he/him (Casting Director) is the founder and lead Casting Director of X Casting (www.xcastingnyc.com). He has cast projects for Broadway (upcoming: Hippest Trip – The Soul Train Musical), London’s West End, TV (upcoming: ‘Genius: MLK/X’ for 20th TV, Nat Geo, Disney+), and Film. He is the proud son of Mexican immigrants.

BRAYDEN SIMPSON (Line Producer) is a Los Angeles-based producer-writer-actor from Baltimore, Maryland; and a 2023 graduate of The Peter Stark Producing Program at USC: School of Cinematic Arts. As a producer, Brayden works to bridge film, TV, and theatre. He has produced at The Public Theater, Mosaic Theater Company of DC, Outfest, and on independent films and series in New York, LA, and DC. While at USC, he has worked with Amblin Partners, Madison Wells, and as a Writer’s Assistant to screenwriter/producer Jessica Sharzer, developing features and pilots. Currently, he is a producer on the 2023 coming-of-age drama short THE JUICE through the Stark program and is producing across the previous mediums in addition to digital and live events. He is an inaugural member of the Theatre Producers of Color, a Better Brothers of LA Scholar, and looks forward to continuing to shape the changing narratives of film, TV, and theatrical producing.

ANA NOVAČIĆ (Scenic Design) is a scenic designer based in New York. She completed her training in Scenography at the Brera Academy of Fine Arts in Milan, and her MFA in Production Design at NYU. Ana began her creative journey in Ireland, working at venues such as the Project Arts Centre, Samuel Beckett Theatre, and Smock Alley Theatre. Her focus now encompasses film and television. Recent credits include East New York (CBS/Warner Bros), The Cherry Orchard (The Harold Clurman Laboratory), Svadba (Boston Lyric Opera), Dwelling (Loosysmokes), Much Ado About Nothing (Two River Theater), and Chiqui (One Love Picture Classics).

Catharina Schürenberg (Costume Design) is a German/Australian writer, director, and costume designer based in New York City. With her design background heavily influencing all her work, her projects often explore the commodification of intimacy—and the relationship between love and sex-work in the digital age. Mara, her first self-written and directed short, premiered at the Fantasia Film Festival in 2022 and won the Outstanding Performance Award. Catharina has been designing film and TV productions nationally and internationally for over 10 years, including the feature film Casting JonBenet a Netflix Original which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. She also designed numerous experimental projects, short films and music videos for artists including Vance Joy, Noora Niasari, Larysa Kondracki, Shalini Kantayya and Gage Tarlton.

Sydney Buchan (Art Direction) is a filmmaker and designer.  She holds an MFA from New York University in writing and directing and has a background in history and dance. Her directing work has played at Winterthur, Leeds, and Prague and has been supported by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and the Leo Rosner Foundation.  Films she’s produced have screened at the Cannes Cinéfoundation, Sundance, Nordisk Panorama, and Berlinale.  Her production design work has been short listed for the Academy Awards, BIFAs, and the Max Orphüs prize and played at festivals around the world including TIFF, Deauville, Sundance (best international short), Gothenburg (Ingmar Bergman Prize), and San Sebastian (Special Jury prize).

DANIEL SCHLOSSBERG (Music) Brooklyn-based composer-pianist Daniel Schlosberg’s music has been performed by the Dover Quartet, Minnesota Orchestra, Choir of Trinity Wall Street, and Nashville Symphony, at Carnegie Hall, (le) poisson rouge, Royal Albert Hall, and David Lynch’s Festival of Disruption. Daniel received the Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and two ASCAP Morton Gould Awards. He has composed for, and music directed, at Soho Repertory Theater, Public Theater, Williamstown Theatre Festival, and Playwrights Horizons. Current projects include composition and music direction for Patrick Wang’s film A. Rimbaud, music direction for Anthony Roth Costanzo and Justin Vivian Bond’s Only an Octave Apart, a new music-theater piece for Little Island in NYC, and The Extinctionist, and a new opera for Heartbeat Opera. Daniel is the Music Director of Heartbeat Opera, for which his radical re-orchestrations have been praised as “flat-out brilliant” (New York Times) and “ingenious” (Wall Street Journal). In addition to collaborations with Angel Blue, Ariana DeBose, Ben Stiller, Tony Kushner, Anthony McGill, and the Imani Winds, he was a pianist on the Grammy-winning soundtrack of Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story, and a soloist in Only an Octave Apart with the New York Philharmonic and on NPR’s Tiny Desk. www.danschlosberg.com

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