EXCLUSIVE | 'Dummy' creator Cody Heller says show is about female friendships and falling in love with oneself

In an exclusive chat with MEAWW, Cody Heller sheds light on the dynamic friendship between a TV writer and a sex doll


                            EXCLUSIVE | 'Dummy' creator Cody Heller says show is about female friendships and falling in love with oneself
Cody Heller (Sela Shiloni)

Cody Heller's upcoming Quibi series 'Dummy' follows Anna Kendrick as a writer trying to overcome her writer's block. But she doesn't do it alone - she does it with some help from her boyfriend's sex doll, Barbara. 

Bringing Cody's real-life experiences to life is Kendrick in the role of Cody, who has been struggling with writer's block for a while now. Upon discovering Barbara (played by Meredith Hagner) in her boyfriend's belonging, she also makes an unusual discovery - the sex doll appears to talk to her, and only her. 

"Only Cody can hear Barbara," Heller tells MEA WorldWide (MEAWW) in an exclusive interview. "When they meet, [Cody doesn't] want to get involved with her. But Barbara pretty quickly breaks Cody down and they become friends, then roommates and writing partners."

So exactly does Barbara manage to help Cody, we ask? 

Heller thinks of Barbara as the highly critical voice that every woman has in her own head. "When women talk to themselves in their heads, [there is] a negative voice that tells them they're not good enough or they're not smart enough or pretty enough. - [in the beginning] Barbara is that in a way," she tells us. 

But this critical voice in Cody's head, this love-hate relationship women have with themselves, eventually transforms itself. 

"By the end of this season, ['Dummy'] is kind of a love story - a story about falling in love with yourself and even your worst, most critical and sometimes-honest thoughts about yourself and trying to make peace with that side of yourself," Heller tells us. 

Heller promises us that 'Dummy' is going to be a fun ride. Originally written as a television pilot, Heller then developed the project for Quibi's ten-minute-long episodic format. The series became a serialized movie-length story that is now told in chapters 10 minutes or less - a challenge that Heller found immensely fulfilling. 

'Dummy' (you can catch a small sneak peek here) is a story about female friendships and coming to terms with your real self - the former, Heller notes, makes the fun part of the show. 

"The friendship between the two of them is the most fun part of the show. The story is about a TV writer. So there's a lot of meta-jokes about the industry," she says. When Heller wrote 'Dummy', the #MeToo movement was only just enveloping Hollywood. "I think a lot of it ['Dummy'] is just about being a, a female writer and existing in Hollywood."

'Dummy' will premiere on April 20, 2020, on Quibi. 

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