Created by out actor Colby Ryan and co-written with his writing partner, Anne Schroeder, Grosse Misconduct depicts an eccentric Human Resources team as they navigate personal and professional struggles under the leadership of their high-maintenance director, Mitch Grosse (Colby Ryan).
It stars transgender actress Pooya Mohseni (Iranian-American transgender activist), Anne Schroeder, Colby Ryan (creator/writer/exec producer and a gay actor) and Steve Barkman.
Released earlier this month, a few days ahead of Ryan Murphy’s groundbreaking series “Pose” – which comprises the largest LGBTQ cast in the history of scripted television series – Grosse Misconduct, likewise, puts transgender (Pooya Mohseni) and gay (Colby Ryan) talent front and center.
Grosse Misconduct offers a refreshing take on LGBTQ representation in that there is none of the typical “coming out” story- no one is struggling with gender identity.
The characters are allowed to be people first, whereas in most media portrayals — and in real life — the focus is on the fact that they’re gay or transgender or …
Anne and Colby’s aim in writing these characters was to create and celebrate work that better represents the full spectrum of the LGBTQ communities and to feature characters that are identifiable and relatable to all audiences – these characters are living, loving, working, arguing, celebrating successes and reacting to failures, just like everyone else.
Even if we see strides are being made in this type of programming, representation matters now more than ever, especially when it comes to transgender actors. While Laverne Cox opened the doors being one of the driving forces behind the success of Orange Is the New Black, she is nevertheless one of only a few trans actors that have managed to reach that level of success.
The same goes to LGBT actors who are more often than not played by cisgender actors (Jared Leto in Dallas Buyers Club, Elle Fanning in 3 Generations, Jeffrey Tambor in Transparent)
While, there seems to be an overwhelming move towards diversity with LGBTQ-centric narratives and characters popping up in movies these past few years, yet major studios are still behind when it comes to fully embracing a culture of inclusion.
In fact, GLAADS’s annual Studio Responsibility Index (SRI) recently noted a drop in the representation of LGBTQ people in films in the past year.
Luckily, there is nevertheless enough of a demand to support hubs of content on the web, and this is where talent like Colby Ryan and Anne Schroeder come into play. We need artists like them to use this alternative distribution platform to amplify and celebrate the voices and stories of our LGBTQ community.
More info on the series can be found at: www.grossemisconduct.com
Colby Ryan is originally from Lancaster, PA. Prior to his move to New York, he performed in theaters throughout South Central PA, including Fulton Opera House and Mt. Gretna Playhouse. Colby recently appeared in lead roles in NYC productions of acclaimed playwright Harry Kondoleon’s The Houseguests and Christmas on Mars, and finished filming the upcoming features Batsh*t Bride and 39 and a Half, as well as the short films Into The Dark, A Mormon Story and The Last Will. He is the creator, head writer, co-executive producer and lead actor of the digital series Grosse Misconduct, released in May 2018. Colby has trained in Meisner and audition technique with Ted Bardy and Anthony Grasso, and Improv at UCB. SAG-AFTRA and AEA member.
Pooya is an Iranian/American actor, Transgender advocate and writer. She’s currently a recurring guest star on the new crime drama “Big Dogs” produced by Choice Films & Theatricals, directed by Mathew Penn and Tony Glazer, to be released in 2018. She’s also a recurring guest star in the first season of the USA network’s “Falling Water”. Her recent stage performances include “The Good Muslim” by Zakiyyah Alexander, directed by William Carden as part of Ensemble Studio Theatre’s One Act marathon, Baltimore Center Stage’s “The White Snake”, directed by Natsu Onoda Power, Madame in The OUTLIERS’ production of “The Maids” directed by Ben Gunderson and the title role in “Death of a Persian Prince” at NYMITF & SAIPAF, directed by Dewey Moss. Pooya appeared at Theatre Row Theatres last November in “One Woman”, a one woman show written by Cecilia Copeland & directed by Joan Kane, as part of the United Solo theatre festival.