SXSW / Exclusive Video Interview: Actor Chris O’Dowd, Actress Gabrielle Dennis and Showrunner David West Read on ‘The Big Door Prize’

The most poignant – and equally funny – stories are often those that emphasize the importance of characters reevaluating their hopes and dreams, and taking time to think about where they came from and where they want to be in the future. That’s certainly true for Chris O’Dowd’s endearingly relatable protagonist of Dusty Hubbard in the highly anticipated comedy television show, The Big Door Prize.

The series was created by Emmy Award-winning Schitt’s Creek writer-producer, David West Read. He also serves as the project’s showrunner, as well as one of its scribes and executive producers.

Read and his co-writers based The Big Door Prize on New York Times bestselling author M.O. Walsh’s acclaimed 2020 novel of the same name. Besides O’Dowd, the screen adaptation also stars Gabrielle Dennis, Ally Maki, Damon Gupton, Josh Segarra, Crystal Fox, Sammy Fourlas and Djouliet Amara.

The Big Door Prize had its World Premiere in the TV Premieres Screening Section of this month’s SXSW Film & TV Festival at Austin’s Stateside Theatre on Saturday, March 11.

In honor of the series’ premiere at SXSW, O’Dowd, Dennis and Read generously took the time to talk about creating, writing, producing, serving as the showrunner on and starring on The Big Door Prize during exclusive interviews over Zoom. You can watch the video interviews here, and read below for an official summary and where to watch the comedy series.

Interview with Showrunner David West Read on “The Big Door Prize”

The Big Door Prize Season 1 plot summary:

The Big Door Prize tells the story of a small town that is forever changed when the mysterious Morpho machine appears at Johnson’s General Store, and promises to reveal each resident’s true life potential. Dusty, who’s a seemingly content, cheerful family man and high school teacher, watches everyone around him reevaluate their life choices and ambitions — based on the machine’s printouts — and is forced to question whether he is truly as happy as he once thought.

While Dusty remains skeptical of the machine, his wife, Cass (Dennis), indulges in the dream that there’s something bigger out there for her. Like many of Deerfield’s residents, the couple has lived a relatively safe, uncomplicated life, until the arrival of the Morpho machine. However, all of that is about to change when the community is forced to reconcile with their unfulfilled achievements in pursuit of a better future.

The first three episodes of The Big Door Prize‘s ten-episode first season will debut globally on Apple TV+ on March 29, 2023. The show’s remaining seven episodes will premiere every Wednesday thereafter, with the season finale airing on May 17, 2023.

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