Q&A with ‘Stranger Hearts’ Kevin James Thornton

Christina Jeter
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Kevin James Thornton is a writer, composer, director, and photographer, who has received a degree in Theatre Performance from Ball State University in 2000.

Currently residing in Nashville, TN with his partner and three cats, his accolades include 2010 ‘New Faces at The Comedy Store in Hollywood’ winner, which launched him into several years of touring theatre and comedy festivals with various one-man shows.

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His first feature film “How To Get From Here To There” was released by Dekkoo/TLA Releasing in 2018. The film included a soundtrack by his gay-folk project Indiana Queen.

Kevin’s newest project is a series called “Stranger Hearts” which was released by Dekkoo on March 12th.  Thoughtful, sexy and deeply heartfelt, the new Original Series follows three queer characters from wildly different backgrounds, played by Amo (MTV’s “The Challenge”, “The Real World: Go Big or Go Home”, musician Matt Moran and newcomer Qua Robertson Harper.

Though they don’t know it, these disparate characters are soon to be connected – through fate, work, family, love…and donuts.  

What inspired you to write this story?

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The way the world is at the moment has had me thinking a lot about the concept of empathy. How we would all be better off if we could learn to walk in another man’s shoes. It started there. Just a simple concept. And then I wanted to make something that I myself would like to watch. So it all grew out of that. A story about three strangers whose lives intertwine.

What was the message behind the main characters being in a same-sex
relationship?

Actually there’s no message there. With all my work I’m simply telling stories of people like myself. The phrase that gets used a lot these days is “representation matters” and I do agree with that. Underrepresented groups of people benefit in a lot of ways when they are able to see themselves in film and TV. But I don’t really have a specific agenda around it. There are enough movies about straight people.

What do you want the audience to take away from watching this production?

Mainly I want people to be entertained and moved. But if I’m able to achieve anything loftier it’s back to that empathy thing. That maybe it will turn some lights on around the idea that we really are all the same.

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How did you go about casting and choosing the right actors/actresses for the parts?

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I feel really fortunate to get the cast that I did. Especially for something like Stranger Hearts that are so completely character-driven. If the acting isn’t believable, the show doesn’t work. Honestly I just put the feelers out there, mainly on social media, and one by one they came to me. After that, I actually rewrote the script quite a bit to fit the personalities I had. All of it just came together really organically.

Dekkoo is available internationally via iTunes, Google Play, Xbox, AppleTV, Xfinity X1 and Roku.

In the U.S. and U.K., Dekkoo is also available via Prime Channels.

Currently, Kevin is in pre-production for a “queer erotic thriller” titled “Monday, Midnight” slated to go into production in summer 2020.

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