Marking the directorial debut of long-time Duplass brothers’ collaborator, Mel Eslyn, BIOSPHERE drops us into the confined lives of Billy (Mark Duplass) and Ray (Sterling K. Brown), lifelong best friends and the last two men on earth. Their survival is largely due to Ray, a brilliant scientist who designed a domed structure with all the systems necessary to sustain life on a planet that could no longer support it. Their custom biosphere is outfitted with basic necessities and creature comforts that make it possible to retain a sense of what life used to be like. A hydroponic garden provides fresh vegetables and a carefully managed fishpond supplies essential protein. Recently, however, fish have begun dying at an alarming rate. With a mere three fish remaining, Billy and Ray face an ominous future. But life may yet find a way. Uproarious and tender in equal measure, BIOSPHERE was a festival favorite. Director Mel Eslyn (Tony Hawk: Until the Wheels Fall Off, The Lady and the Dale) joins us to talk about making the leap from producing into the director’s chair, as well as finding the credible cinematic space where humor and pathos can co-exist as well as they do in BIOSPHERE.
About the filmmaker – Mel Eslyn is a film and television producer, writer and director, and President of Duplass Brothers Productions. Winner of the 2016 Independent Spirit Producer’s Award, Eslyn is the veteran producer behind films that include the 2014 Sundance hit “The One I Love”, Clea DuVall’s debut “The Intervention”, Lynn Shelton’s “Outside In”, Miguel Arteta’s “Duck Butter”, Jeff Baena’s “Horse Girl”, Natalie Morales’ “Language Lessons”, and Roshan Sethi’s “7 Days” for which she won her 2nd Spirit Award. On the smaller screen, her television producing credits include HBO’s “Room 104” on which she also frequently wrote and directed, the Independent Spirit Award nominated docu-series “The Lady and the Dale”, Hulu’s “Sasquatch”, and Showtime’s “Cinema Toast”. Most recently she produced the breakout comedy “Somebody Somewhere” as well as Sam Jones’ latest documentary “Tony Hawk: Until the Wheels Fall Off”, both of which aired on HBO. Upcoming releases include Sarah Adina Smith’s “The Drop”, Jeff Baena’s “Spin Me Round”, and Nnamdi Asomugha’s debut feature “The Knife”. “Biosphere” is Eslyn’s own feature directorial debut.
“Post-apocalyptic survival meets the anxious buddy humor of Humpday in Biosphere, a mysterious and hilarious pic that really can’t be discussed much without saying things a prospective viewer would be better off not hearing.” – John DeFore, Hollywood Reporter