1. Recently, you completed Mama &
Damian, which is an absolutely
bizarre film, so tell people about it.
You say bizarre, Dale, I say itís just the stuff that runs around
in my head.
Iím a pretty exaggerated thinker. I also had some help from W.G.
White, who plays the bear-boy. Heís a bit cracked as well. Itís a story about a 12-year-old half-human, half-bear boy named
Damian, his dominatrix mother, and the rest of his unusual family.
As with most kids, Damian starts getting into trouble as he
approaches adolescence. He befriends a redneck kid from the neighborhood and all hell
breaks loose after that.
2. The reaction has been favorable in spite of the low budget and the
Oh yes. People laugh like crazy at the funniest scenes. People love
Damian the bear boy. Best of all, Iíve had people quote lines from the
film back to me.
3. There are some webpages up devoted to this and if no where it can
be ordered, right?
Yep Iím doing a
cottage industry thing right now. You can send a check or money order for
$20 made out to Kathleen Lehmer
Trinka Five Films
PO Box 30950
Or go to the website
I also have two
4. You have had some underground and film fest showings of this?
It premiered at the Newark Film Festival in September and
showed again as part of Best of the Fest.
Iím entering into more festivals and may have some more local
Iíve showed it to small groups at the studio where I edited the film, Immagine Studios in Wilmington, DE.
5. The bear-boy is uncanny. Tell me, since he has a Nazi
grandfather hiding out in this plot, in the basement in this film, is
bear-boy some type of Nazi experiment? Cloning like Mengele might have
Thatís a good
theory. If you look closely youíll catch a glimpse of Damianís father.
The line right before
he appears is Papa died.
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6. Didn't the actor who plays the bear-boy get hit by a car while you
Yep, slammed into the
pavement head first.
He was on the way to a
shoot. After he got hit he couldnít remember anything except that
Kathi was waiting for him.
The EMTís asked who
I was but W.G. couldnít remember.
7. What happened, was he wearing the bear suit and did some idiot
driving stare at him, do a doubletake and plow into him without even
Yeah, weíll go with
8. You acted in this, wrote it, directed it and have done a load of
other activities to bring this film to light. Was it intentional, taking
on all these roles, so you would get the job done right or was that just
how it panned out?
I definitely did it
that way to get the job done right, but I learned that I will have to
delegate more during the next production. Otherwise, Iíll be in the
9. You are presently considering a vampire production next?
locations and looking for actors.
This production will
be way more baroque and the humor will be much more subversive.
10. You use volunteer actors, correct?
So far, that is
correct. I wish I could pay everyone, but my budgets are tiny.
11. Some did an amazing job in Mama &
Damian, considering they
had such limited experience.
For the most part, I
cast pretty close to the personalities of the actors. Some of the
characters were actually written with specific people in mind.
W.G. White, the
bear-boy, was always the bear-boy. I wrote Wolfgang, the
pansexual-troublemaker nephew for Ashley Cleaver; same for Gunter,
Mamaís love interest, played by Todd Michael Smith.
David Robinson, who
plays Opa, the Nazi in the basement, was not like his character at all.
He had sent me his
headshot and his face was precisely what I had envisioned for Opa. I
explained to him on the phone that he would have to wear a corset and
boxer shorts. He was game. When he showed up, he was squeaky-clean, looked
like he was going to go play golf. He was so sweet, I thought How in
the hell will this nice man be able to play such an evil character?
Well, he pulled it
off, W.G. was scared of him. lol
David is a seasoned
stage actor and works for the government in Washington, D.C.
12. I personally liked the guy running the strip club.
Yes, and I picked him
up in a mall parking lot. lol
The actor I originally
had for the part disappeared so I was frantically searching for a
replacement two days before the shoot.
I was waiting for one
of my friends to come out of the store and heard this booming voice. I
looked over in the direction of the voice and thought Holy crap,
I ran over and
introduced myself to the Reverend Thomas Brown.
I asked him if he
wanted to be in a movie. He never missed a beat, he simply said
Yes. It turns out he
had worked in the movies in the 1940ís and had also traveled the country
Heís a treasure. He
provided his own costumes, which were very snazzy indeed.
13. I imagine you have a couple interesting stories surrounding the
filming of Mama &
Damian, aside from your actor getting hit by a car.
Well, the really juicy
stuff I canít talk about, but letís say there were some complicated
interpersonal relationships going on. lol
Besides that I was in
a car accident as well, I got rear-ended by a tractor trailer. I was knocked out,
donít remember the accident. I was in some kind of weird zone for a
couple of months. Actually Iím not
sure I ever came out of it.
I think maybe I died
and this is just my ghost pretending that I didnít. lol
14. You played a pretty convincing dominatrix on one hand, but a
loving mother on the other. How did you come up with the balance for this
I see those two roles
as one and the same. Both require strength and an unfailing ability to
decide what is best for someone.
It takes a strong
mother to pull a knife on a kid who is threatening your child. It takes an
equally strong person to figure out that someone might enjoy licking your
15. Have you patterned yourself after any specific director?
No, but having watched
so many films, I canít help but be influenced. I love Stanley
Kubrickís work, especially Lolita. David Lynch is a
longtime favorite. I went to the same art school in Philadelphia that he
did, The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Perhaps a bit of his
spirit had been left there when I attended.
My number one favorite
director is Federico Fellini. More current favorites
are Wes Anderson and Miranda July. For comic timing you
canít beat Billy Wilder. I also love Lloyd
Kauffman. Iím all over the
place, many different eras, styles, and genres fascinate me.
16. You do tend to lean toward the weird side though?
Oh yeah, everything
else bores me.
17. You remind me a little of Waters, Fellini or maybe Jess Franco
minus the bigger budget.
I like writing
characters that go right up to the edge of doing something really heinous
and then sometimes cross over the line. I like presenting it all in an
18. You have also considered a sequel with the bear boy again?
Oh yes, when the time
is right. I would like to have my core actors back though. Iím not going
to pull a Bewitched with a brand new Darren.
19. You designed the bear boy costume yourself?
Yes, you could say
that. I bought a pattern for a multiple-animal costume. The only thing I
changed was the ears. I made them bigger. Bigger ears look cuter.
20. Didn't some other people help with clothing and set designs?
A lot of people
helped, put their own costumes together or donated stuff I could use. I
found a lot of stuff in thrift shops. I bought Mamaís corset online. The furries'
costumes are just giant stuffed animals that I gutted and added zippers
and stuff. Bunny Girlís costume
was a big pink stuffed rabbit one of my friends had dug out of the trash.
I used the bear-boy pattern for the body and the rabbitís head with the
face cut off. My ex-husband helped
me get the look of the bear-boyís family home together. I was moving
into the apartment and had the whole place re-painted, floors put down, a
chandelier in the living room Ö so that the set would look right. I have
a very cooperative landlord. lol
21. Anything more you would like to touch on concerning your films?
With any film, my goal
is to make something entertaining and unique. I think I accomplished this
with Mama and Damian. I also want to mention
Jeremiah Thomson. Heís a musician from New Orleans who wrote all the
music. I think that was key
in pulling the whole production together.
22. What interests do you have aside from film?
Bondage and painting.
23. Closing comments.
Order a copy of Mama
and Damian. It will be a unique experience!
Go here for the