During a rehearsal of a key confrontational scene in Eric Rudnick‘s Day Trader, teenager Brighid Fleming — playing 15-year-old Juliana Barlow — holds her own against Danton Stone, the actor who plays her 49-year-old father Ron. As Juliana, Fleming — probably the youngest actor ever to win an Ovation Award — is protesting the type of parental pressure children are forever being told is for “your own good.”
When Ron tells his daughter she’s a “well of disappointment” to her mother, the failed scriptwriter is really psychologically describing himself, even as he accuses Juliana of a crime while seeking to scam her. Fleming, however, is subtle enough to suggest that her shrewd character smells a rat — and won’t go gently into that good night.
Welcome to the morally compromised universe of Day Trader, a thriller that boasts more twists and turns than Maui’s fabled road to Hana. Ron Barlow is a failed scriptwriter facing the big 5-0. Playwright and co-producer Rudnick believes many aspiring artistes in Hollywood’s milieu “will recognize themselves” in the characters on display in the premiere of his play, on Thursday at Bootleg Theater.
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