REXBURG — Scranton, Pennsylvania. Pawnee, Indiana. And now, Rexburg, Idaho. What is their relation?
They are all host cities for television shows that are categorized as “mockumentaries” based on everyday life.
Mark Mattei is creating a show called “The Singles” based on a Mormon singles ward. He said this project will be different from other popular mockumentaries like “The Office” and “Parks and Recreation” because the film crew will be part of the show.
“LDS comedy has kind of dropped and we want to bring that back up with this show,” Mattei told EastIdahoNews.com. “It’s a ‘mockumentary’ about an LDS singles ward.”
To add to this unique angle, members of the film crew will not be members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The project is in pre-production and will start filming this August. Six characters have been cast and Mattei is trying to keep his budget as low as possible, meaning some of the actors will not be getting paid.
One of the six characters is comedian Tanner Rahlf, who opened for Stuart Edge when he performed in Rexburg in February. Rahlf will play a character named Sean.
“He has love for everyone he’s around – sometimes to a nuisance to others,” Rahlf said describing his character. “He’s always willing to help out, but will probably find a way to screw it up.”
Rahlf got involved with the show through a friend who is a writer. He was asked to do a table read for Sean’s character and says he had an instant connection with him. After speaking with Mattei and attending more table reads, he got the part.
Mattei believes utilizing talent specifically in Rexburg will not only help the show but also showcase what the city has to offer.
“We could go to Utah where there’s a ton more people,” says Mattei. “But we really believe that, especially here at BYU-Idaho and the Rexburg area, there’s just the talent we need and (we can) utilize that talent to make this work.”
Mattei has been in contact with multiple video streaming sites like VidAngel in hopes that the show will be picked up when it is ready to air.