EXCLUSIVE: Mark O’Brien (Your Honor) will exec produce and star in the coming-of-age drama Topper from 1A Motion Pictures and Bad Lad Productions, which has wrapped production in Detroit. Others set for major roles include Paul Johansson (God Is a Bullet), Amanda Clayton (City on a Hill), and actor-comedians Jimmy Shubert (Entourage), Bryan Callen (Warrior) and Erik Griffin (Workaholics).

The first feature written and directed by actor Kevin McNamara (Why Women Kill) follows Topper (O’Brien), a hard-drinking middling comedian with a seemingly endless capacity for self-sabotage. Topper receives news that his estranged father (Johansson) is terminally ill and begrudgingly returns to Detroit to sell the family home, which was never much of a home to him.

While back in Detroit, the friends he left behind — Lucas (Callen), Cooper (Griffin) and Ray (Shubert) — aren’t shy about pointing out how far he has drifted off course, despite showing early promise as a young comic. Allie (Clayton), his once best friend, is embroiled in too many of her own struggles as a mother sacrificing to provide that she isn’t able to offer much of a shoulder to cry on. However, she does hold a mirror up to Topper, giving him the tough love that he clearly needs to take steps towards healing from his traumatic childhood. 

Additional cast set for the pic includes Mo Brings Plenty (Yellowstone), Catherine Dyer (The Terminal List), Jimmy Burke (Wonder Woman 1984), Jade Catta-Preta (Future Man), Will Hirschfeld (Dyad), Jonathan Kowalsky (Catch the Fair One), Steven Spence and Dicky Eklund Jr. (Hostiles).

McNamara and Hirschfeld will produce, with O’Brien being joined as an exec producer by Chris Broby Hansen, Brittain Traynham, Phil Freitas, Jason Pozarowski, Kyle Martens, Ionel Deaconscu, Michael Krause and Eric Kind. 

O’Brien has previously been seen in films including Blue Bayou, Marriage Story, Ready or Not, Bad Times at the El Royale, The Front Runner and Arrival, among others. He’s recently appeared on series including 61st Street and City on a Hill and will next be seen in the second seasons of both Showtime’s Your Honor and HBO’s Perry Mason. The actor won a Canadian Screen Award in 2020 for his lead role in the hockey drama Goalie and made his directorial debut with the horror The Righteous in 2021. He is represented by UTA, Thruline Entertainment, The Characters Talent Agency in Toronto, and Lichter, Grossman, Nichols.

McNamara is repped by HRI Talent and Ignite Talent Management; Hirschfeld by Energy Entertainment and Ramo Law; Johansson by Mavrick Artists Agency, Toronto’s Edna Talent Management, Vancouver’s Lucas Talent and Gilbertson Entertainment; Clayton by A3 Artists Agency, Brave Artists Management and Holmes Weinberg, PC; Shubert by Authentic Talent and Literary Management and Cohen & Gardner; Callen by State of the Art Agency; Griffin by CAA and Artists First; Brings Plenty by manager Michelle Shining Elk and Meyer & Downs; Dyer by the UK’s Paradigm Artist Management, Atlanta Models and Talent, HRI Talent and Huxley Entertainment Management; Catta-Preta by Gersh and Myman Greenspan Fox; and Kowalsky by Brevard Talent Group in Orlando, McDonald Selznick Associates and Ignite Talent Management. 


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