When asked “What is Astronomy Club’s most lofty goal?” the New York–based sketch group replied:
We’re not sure how lofty it is, because our group is straight fire, but our main goal is to have a television show. That’s step one. A sketch show would be great, but we are also developing ideas for a Reno 911! type show and an animated show. Our loftiest goal as a group, or should we say STEP TWO, would be to have multiple television shows that are awarded multiple Emmys, and then a box office smash movie. We ready.
Sounds insane for a virtually unknown sketch group to be talking like this, right? Well, not quite. Because they’re far from unknown. They’re just under-celebrated.
Astronomy Club includes members Shawtane Bowen, Jonathan Braylock, Ray Cordova, Caroline Martin, Jerah Milligan, Monique Moses, James III, and Keisha Zollar. Each name on the group’s roster has been in plenty writers rooms and hair and makeup chairs at the likes of NBC, HBO, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, Funny or Die, Above Average, and Netflix since forming in 2013. Despite moderate and sustaining success on screens small and silver and a successful run at the Upright Citizen Brigade Theatre in New York from 2014–2016, the ensemble has yet to break through with a project they can call their own.
Last October I was able to go to the Gateway Film Center’s first Nightmares Film Festival. I saw many films there but what stood out to me most was the fantastic selections of short films. One of my favorites was Matt Braunsdorf’s “John the Carpenter”.
A monster stalks the snow-covered woods in this effortlessly ‘80s-style trailer for the short film John the Carpenter. It’s not simply the title we love about this film; the trailer is mighty impressive with its 80s ambiance that channels an appropriately Carpenter-esque vibe. It will be no surprise to learn that the film won Best Cinematography at the Nightmares Film Festival, because the short trailer boasts a gorgeous use of light, darkness and striking colours.