THE CROWDED HOUR

Written By: David Mulei

Director: Maureen Payne-Hahner

Producing Partner: Writers Innovative Network

Summer, 1918. Sixty-year-old Theodore Roosevelt is ten years out of office and shattered by the news that his youngest son, Quentin, has been killed in action in World War I. With his three remaining sons still at the front, Theodore shoulders the blame for inspiring his reckless boys to self-destruction. 

This highly-theatrical drama reveals the tragic psychological and spiritual conclusion of a life defined by tireless crusade. It is this six-month chapter, often glossed-over in accounts of the great man's life, which strikingly reveals Theodore to be a man divided. Publicly, he struggles to mount an improbable political comeback. Privately, he stumbles through the darkness with his wife, Edith, and two daughters at their Sagamore Hill home in Oyster Bay, Long Island. As his once-powerful body and mind come apart, he is haunted by visions of three generations of Roosevelts. It will prove to be Theodore's greatest battle, a resolute confrontation with the often violent traumas he has spent a lifetime trying to outrun.
 


HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS

(FOREIGN SERVICE, DOMESTIC DRAMA)

Set in the foreign service, this intimate full-length play tells the story of mid-level consular officer Paul Rego and his wife, Laura, as they struggle to endure another hardship post. Rising from a blue-collar background, Paul has clawed his way up the lower rungs of the State Department’s grueling up-or-out career ladder. It’s taken ten years of pack-outs, countless bureaucratic run-arounds, and often harrowing living conditions overseas but, finally, a prestigious position in D.C. and the suburban safety Laura craves is within sight. Through the course of two dreadful, darkly comic days of personal and professional failure, Paul and Laura are forced to confront the calculating people they’ve become, and wrestle with the ultimate value of their aspirations.


STUBBORN THINGS

Historical documents, real-life expert witness reports, and trial transcripts are woven into the action of this full-length drama, which begins six weeks prior to the start of the 2000 Irving v. Lipstadt libel trial. 

Gail is a research assistant struggling to prove that notorious Holocaust denier David Irving’s revisionist claims are not only wrong, but are hateful lies. But as she examines a seemingly endless pile of horrific documentary evidence from her cramped basement office, Gail is met with new and unwelcome challenges: her fellow research assistant is leaving the project; her closest friend doubts the value of her work; and now, most disturbingly, she finds herself face to face with a menacing vision of Irving himself. As Gail races to meet her deadline, she is pressed to the limits of her fierce self-reliance, and must confront the possibility that no one can determine when an innocent mistake becomes a deliberate distortion of the truth.


THE BEST PLACES TO LIVE

Victim (Jesse Berman) comes face to face with Offender (Michael Kolek) in a restorative justice mediation. Their facilitator is committed to a process which she believes can promote genuine healing, while a skeptical police officer sees only an opportunity to subvert justice. In the end, it will be Jesse who must decide if Michael's contrition is sincere. 


Unreal City

WITH RUDI SCHWAB

A SIX-PART MINISERIES, Adapted from the Acclaimed book by Judith Nies

In 1492 the natives discovered they were Indians;
They discovered they lived in America;
They discovered they were naked;
They discovered there was sin.
- Eduardo Galeano, Children of the Days

An epic struggle over land, water, and power is erupting in the American West and the halls of Washington, DC. It began when a 4,000-square-mile area of Arizona desert called Black Mesa was divided between the Hopi and Navajo tribes. To the outside world, it was a land struggle between two fractious Indian tribes; to political insiders and energy corporations, it was a divide-and-conquer play for the 21 billion tons of coal beneath Black Mesa. Today, that coal powers cheap electricity for Los Angeles, a new water aqueduct into Phoenix, and the neon dazzle of Las Vegas.

Adapted from Judith Nies' acclaimed non-fiction book of the same name, the series follows the money and tells the true story of wealth and water, mendacity, and corruption at the highest levels of business and government. Amid the backdrop of the breathtaking desert landscape, Unreal City shows five cultures colliding -- Hopi, Navajo, global energy corporations, Mormons, and US government agencies -- resulting in a battle over resources and the future of the West. 

It is an untold story that demands attention, but as with the most ambitious historical dramas, Unreal City will reach for something more than a straightforward chronicle of events. Like Traffic, Narcos, and Show Me a Hero, this series will tackle universal themes that ask hard questions about how we live and the choices we make. How and why have resources been taken from native lands? What does it mean in an era of climate change? How, in cities divorced from nature, has money become the only thing more powerful than water? 


THE CROWDED HOUR

Screenplay by: Rudi Schwab and David Mulei

Based on the Play by: David Mulei

 

It’s 1918. WWI rages. Once the most powerful man on earth, Theodore Roosevelt finds his life spiraling out of control following the death of his youngest son in the skies over France. With his three remaining sons still at the front and a 1920 White House run catching fire, gruesome visions and opiate-induced hallucinations eat at Theodore's soul and drive him to the edge of madness.

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David Mulei's plays include Household Effects (foreign service, domestic drama), Stubborn Things, The Crowded Hour, and The Best Places to Live. His work has been developed at Open Fist, Rogue Machine, and Arena Stage (TOA), among other venues in Los Angeles and NYC.

David is an active advocate for the performing arts in Boston, where he lives with his wife and daughter. He is developing a new production of Pilate's Daughter – "America's Oldest Passion Play" – for Boston's Basilica in Mission Hill, is a supporter of the arts at Boston Latin School, and leads a scriptwriting workshop at Massachusetts College of Arts and Design.

As a television writer, he has written for Clubhouse (CBS), Love Monkey (CBS), and Veronica Mars (CW). David is a graduate of Wesleyan University and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

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