Is life imitating art in the City of Tamarac? Eleven years ago, Tamarac Commissioner Marlon Bolton (D-Holness) directed a movie about a young church pastor caught up in political corruption. The two-minute YouTube trailer for “Johnny” gives us a brief glimpse of the musical comedy from the mind of Marlon Bolton. The movie features Bolton playing a reporter with an English accent.
In August 2010, Marlon Bolton spoke about “Johnny” with the Jamaicans.com website. According to the article, Bolton went from “high profile model agent to playwright” in the blink of an eye. Originally planned as a stage play, Bolton filmed his opus around Fort Lauderdale. The full title of the movie is “Johnny – Political Corruption and Community Passa Passa.”
The comically self-promoting article claims Marlon Bolton gave up a lavish party lifestyle with “A-listers” to film a movie with unknown actors in Broward County. Bolton said, “I have not exactly made a drastic move; I have simply taken on another task… I will now produce amazing plays, present amazing actors while building the community I have now adopted.”
Are Tamarac residents unwitting actors in Marlon Bolton’s newest production?
Will Dale Holness get an Best Actor nomination?
Here’s the full story from Jamaicans.com:
Marlon Bolton has yet again embarked on another mission which already is changing lives – from High profile Model Agent to Playwright. Bolton at age 12 started business in Jamaica and by 19 owned one of the most successful model placement agencies in the Caribbean, Marlon then moved permanently to the United States and took another bold step becoming a Model Agent managing models that has successfully completed assignments for Givenchy, Numero, GQ, Rolex and Dolce and Gabbana.
The flashy lifestyle of partying with models and jet setting to Fashion weeks across the world, sitting front row beside A-listers and doing business with the rich and famous is now traded for a Florida based team of rising Actors and Actresses and a dream to open a community centre and Theatre for the Arts. This drastic move according to Bolton is described by one of his mentors as a “Gemini thing” hinting that Gemini’s have multiple dreams and does a lot at the same time, but Bolton in his own words says “I have not exactly made a drastic move; I have simply taken on another task… I will now produce amazing plays, present amazing actors while building the community I have now adopted”
Marlon wastes no time. His first production that has credited him this new title was recently launched in Fort Lauderdale. The name of the production is “Johnny – Political Corruption and Community Passa Passa”
Johnny is Mildly Musical. A Drama-comedy to be a film adaptation. The play is centered on a young man “Johnny” that grew up poverty stricken, but found success in life. Nigel Stafford who plays Johnny, develops uncontrollable anger management problems during marriage overseas, looses focus on his relationship with Jesus Christ that has been watered down by his new found wealth and Job as a Politian, but a stroke of bad luck reminds him of his past passions, which leads him to return to his old community in Jamaica to run for political office. Bolton’s skillful technique to present different messages and his display of literary work in this one production is genius; the role “Ericka” played by Cellicia Hunt, is breath talking, Ericka is the antagonist of the play – she is constantly seeking attention and or fighting against the better of “Princess” by Anitra Simpson. The craftiness of characterization where Princess is concerned is must see, she displays heroism at all levels in the play. “Nancy” played by Sherron Wedderburn is the comic relief of the entire production, a preppy, sophisticated but hated Politian. “Miss May” played by Eda Rodney is the foil of Johnny and indeed alongside Johnny the Protagonist – both Characters goes through turmoil but gets to realize that life is not all about what one has, they both learn that money cannot buy things of the heart. “Dr. Priest Jean de Baptiste” played by member, reveals Ms. May’s realization buts its Johnny’s life experience that realizes his. James Lyttle “the Pastor” is the parody of Pastors, while “Malvet” and “John” by Gillian Campbell and Kemar Bonnick respectively is the epitome of Caribbean family relationships, their dedication to “Johnny” who in early life is played by Everald McDonald deserves an award.
Realistically though, without characters like “Max” played by Charles Brown and “Stacy” by April Russell who both has a love affair “Miss Carmen” played by Shernett Syankana another comic relief, “Jeniffer” by Kerry McKenzie, “Paulette” played by Sarah Wedderburn and “Chris” by Kareem Memnom, the plot of the play would not be effectively realized.
Though the catastrophic ending is a skillful understatement there is an eminent catharsis.
Johnny – the play, is not by any means your typical “Christian” production, though the undertone, Johnny’s mission is to realize real life issues and promote positive Caribbean life – comically.
According to Bolton, he wrote this play after reading a book by John Maxwell, Maxwell in the book 21 Irrefutable Laws of leadership motives people and build better leaders and helps people to see the bigger picture – “I know the play will be long running and overtime will make enough money to start a community centre and finance my church’s visions… Community Centers changes lives and prevent havocs, and this is the big picture”
As a part of the big Picture “Johnny” will open on August 27th and 28th in Sunrise Florida and continue for the next 3 years across the world.