Poser is a high-tension trip through the dim alleys and backstages of an indie music scene you’d kill to join. Wallflower Lennon Gates (Sylvie Mix) yearns for access to the inner sanctum of the underground music scene in Columbus, Ohio. When she creates a podcast to interview the local artists she adores, Lennon discovers her own musical ambitions, develops a fast friendship with the striking, confident performer Bobbi Kitten, and in the process creates an identity not wholly her own. Soon, Lennon’s aspirations, with some constructive coaxing from Bobbi to find her voice, lead her down a path of dark obsession.


We graduated from college together in 2014 and moved to Columbus, OH. We were twenty-two and both inexperienced, eager, and ready to absorb as much as we could in our new city. We eventually fell in love with the arts community in Columbus. We’d spend weekends at seedy music venues, watching friends perform, discovering a variety of new sounds and ideas.

We were introduced to the most talented, passionate, and absurd people that we had ever met. As budding filmmakers, we made music videos for these musicians. With hardly any budget at all—we’d concept ideas, use friends as extras, and shoot in abandoned buildings. At times, it all felt cliché. But it always felt special.

When we got to the point when we were ready to work on our first feature-length film, we felt compelled to write a story using this world of underground music as a backdrop. The eccentricities that often accompany musicians helped guide this idea. There was already a universe there, with real characters that felt like they should be in a film.

We first met Bobbi Kitten after casting her in a music video for another band. She was charismatic, wild, and an amazing performer. After working with her, we discovered her band, Damn the Witch Siren. Their music was different. Weird. With a self-described genre of “Witch Rock,” their shows were a high energy experience that captured our imagination. When we began writing the script for POSER, we started with Bobbi. What kind of fun, twisted story could we create using her and Damn the Witch Siren as the backbone? We built the narrative around real bands and music, ultimately having Bobbi play a caricature of herself.

We asked Sylvie Mix, our lead, to act as Lennon in a “proof of concept” trailer that we made in order to help us get funding for POSER. Sylvie had never acted before and we had intended to work with a more experienced actress for the actual film. But after working with Sylvie on the trailer, and seeing the chemistry between her and Bobbi we couldn’t imagine anyone else playing the role of Lennon. She was perfect.

We felt like POSER was a film that we had to make in our twenties. It draws on the emotions of being a young adult and struggling with your identity. It is our first feature-length film and the result of a genuinely collaborative process. We have worked creatively together since college, and as a directing and editing duo we have constantly challenged one another and built on the other’s strengths. This film was an opportunity to present our filmmaking style.

We hope to successfully bring POSER into the world. We want it to be seen. We want it to inspire. And ultimately, we hope it helps us to continue making films.

Available from Oscilloscope.

About the Author

Bryen Dunn is a freelance journalist with a focus on travel, lifestyle, entertainment and hospitality. He has an extensive portfolio of celebrity interviews with musicians, actors and other public personalities. He enjoys discovering delicious eats, tasting spirited treats, and being mesmerized by musical beats.