THE CASSEROLE CLUB

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Long before Lady Gaga (got) Telephoned (by) Beyonce in their steamy, prison lesbot music video, filmmaker/director Steve Balderson was already serving time with Karen Black, Mink Stole and Starina Johnson in Stuck! which premiered at the Raindance Film Festival in the UK and was later featured at the Macon Film Festival in 2010.

Balderson's latest film, The Casserole Club, makes its world premiere as the Centerpiece Screening in June at VISIONFEST '11 at Tribeca Cinemas, New York.

The Casserole Club, which was based on actual events in South Georgia, starts innocently enough as a recipe swapping club for five Macon housewives. Before long, they were the ones being swapped from husband to husband. Fun, sexy and adventurous? Not too sure about that...

The inspiration for the film came somewhat unexpectedly when Balderson was a featured guest at the Macon Film Festival and learned about a scandalous swinger's club that rocked the small town. He [Balderson] says that during his southern stay "he heard stories about real fascinations about wife swapping in Macon and how it ruined lives; fun and games until one of the spouses fell in love. Once that happened, it started becoming a problem."

Frankie Krainz, Casserole's screenwriter, poked around for information, but tight-lipped Macon wasn't serving up second helpings. It is unclear of the exact time period of the actual club so Balderson, along with Krainz's recommendation, chose 1969 as their summer of love. Krainz liked that so many historically significant events occurred in '69 and Balderson [agreed] but also finds the era aesthetically appealing. "I loved the look, the hairdo's and style. I wish people still did that," said Balderson.

So, if The Casserole Club starts out as a period piece about cooking recipes and sex games, how does it end? When two of the club spouses fall in love with one another, the lies, deceit and devastation begin. "At that point, the movie shifts," describes Balderson, "into an essay about damaged people and the film takes a very heavy turn."

Former Backstreet Boy, Kevin Richardson, as Conrad Bainbridge, leads an amazing cast of "swingers" which also include: Susan Traylor as Sugar BainbridgePleasant Gehman as Florene JohnsonHunter Bodine as Burt JohnsonStarina Johnson as Kitty BloomGarrett Swann as Sterling BloomJennifer Grace as Marybelle BeedumMichael Maize as Max BeedumDaniela Sea (you know her as Moira/Max on Showtime's “The L Word.”) as Leslie Holleran and Mark Booker as Jerome Holleran.



Visionfest had this to say about The Casserole Club: Ms. Traylor’s performance was described as “a perfect gem in an ensemble of diamonds,” by VF co-director, Bruno Derlin, who added that “CASSEROLE CLUB is the director’s best work to date.  We’ve bestowed awards on two of his previous films, but Mr. Balderson never ceases to impress and amaze us with his prolific work.”
The Casserole Club Photo Gallery



[caption id="attachment_8196" align="aligncenter" width="478" caption="Starina Johnson & Garrett Swann."]casserole-club-steve-balderson-dusti-cunningham-film-fashionado[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_8197" align="aligncenter" width="430" caption="Michael Maize."]casserole-club-steve-balderson-michael-maize-maryann-bates-film-fashionado[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_8198" align="aligncenter" width="430" caption="Susan Traylor."]casserole-club-steve-balderson-susan-traylor-dusti-cunningham-film-fashionado[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_8199" align="aligncenter" width="430" caption="Kevin Richardson."]casserole-club-kevin-richardson-steve-balderson-dusti-cunningham-film-fashionado[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_8244" align="aligncenter" width="430" caption="Garrett Swann. "]garrett-swann-casserole-club-fashionado[/caption]


[caption id="attachment_8259" align="aligncenter" width="430" caption="Jennifer Grace."]Jennifer-Grace-casserole-club-steve-balderson-fashionado[/caption]



[caption id="attachment_8245" align="aligncenter" width="430" caption="Hunter Bodine."]hunter-bodine-casserole-club-fashionado[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_8229" align="aligncenter" width="430" caption="Kevin Richardson, Daniela Sea, Mark Booker."]the-casserole-club-steve-balderson-kevin-richardson-daniela-sea-fashionado[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_8230" align="aligncenter" width="430" caption="Pleasant Gehman."]casserole-club-steve-balderson-fashionado[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_8240" align="aligncenter" width="478" caption="Steamy! Jennifer Grace & Kevin Richardson."]kevin-richardson-steve-balderson-casserole-club-movie-fashionado[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_8246" align="aligncenter" width="430" caption="Daniela Sea."]daniela-sea-l-word-casserole-club-balderson-fashionado[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_8243" align="aligncenter" width="478" caption="Steve Balderson styles the Club picture. ALL photos by Maryann Bates & Dusti Cunningham."]casserole=club-steve-balderson-fashionado[/caption]

The Casserole Club makes its premiere on Friday, June 24th at 7:00pm at Tribeca Cinemas, NY. The brilliant Steve Balderson and much of the cast will be in attendance. Tickets to Visionfest '11 will go on sale soon on at : www.visionfest.com/

*bonus: Balderson revealed a tidbit about his next production... taking an adventurous turn, Balderson's next film will be Indiana Jones-esque... action of a different kind!

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