This new play imagines what would happen if Trump flees from the law after his felony convictions – Orange County Register

When Emmy-winning TV writer Christian McLaughlin first came up with the idea for his latest play back in 2017, he knew the concept was a bit out there.

He thought it would be pretty funny to write a play about a power-mad former president who decides to flee prosecution for multiple crimes along with his dysfunctional family. He knew it was a bit absurd back then, but now, well, considering former President Donald Trump’s recent legal woes, that’s not so far-fetched anymore.

“With theater there’s usually such a long gestation period for any theatrical process so you don’t usually get any kind of ‘ripped from the headlines’ quality to anything you’re writing. But this case is so unique we just lucked into the fact that the action of the play could really happen tomorrow, it could become reality at any second,” said McLaughlin, who is the playwright and director of “Trumpery.”

The play runs at The Actors Company June 14-28 as part of the Hollywood Fringe Festival. A preview performance was set for June 8.

The one-act satirical comedy imagines former President Donald Trump commandeering his daughter’s yacht to flee prosecution. He’s accompanied by his immediate family and an unexpected stowaway. As the escape progresses tensions rise, rivalries are inflamed, loyalties are tested, scandalous secrets are revealed and of course hilarity ensues.

McLaughlin, whose credits include writing for TV shows like “The Young and the Restless,” “Married… with Children,” “Desperate Housewives,” as well as plays and novels, first came up with the shortly after Trump was elected.

“I was thinking that this is not going to end well. So I started imagining what would happen if everything really went to crap and he didn’t want to stick around and escape whatever trouble he was going to get into,” he said.

Well, trouble happened because Trump has become the first former president to be a convicted felon after he was found guilty on 34 counts of falsifying business records that involved a payment of $130,000 in hush money to adult movie star Stormy Daniels, who said she had affair with him in 2006. Trump is set to be sentenced on July 11.

And the timing couldn’t have been better for his play, McLaughlin said.

“It’s just a huge coincidence that we are presenting in between his actual conviction and his sentencing,” he said.

When he first came up with the idea, McLaughlin imagined Trump’s reaction after escaping from the law.

“The idea was that he would be stuck in a confined space with his immediate family and how irritated and annoyed he would be with all of them except for Ivanka, who is his favorite person in the world apart from himself,” he said.

He fine-tuned the play for the next few years and as they were getting ready for its debut the Trump verdicts were announced on TV, which led to a celebration for him and the cast for various reasons.

“When the verdicts came down, the cast and I and the producers were just stunned and delighted and hoping that it’s going to make people curious to see this scenario that we present, which is outrageous and ridiculous and our version of how things could go, because if there’s any time for this family to flee and get out of this country it’s right now,” he said.


When: June 14-28; 10 p.m. Friday, June 14, 9:30 p.m. Thursday, June 20, 10 p.m. June 22, 8:30 p.m. June 23, 8:30 p.m. June 26 and 10 p.m. June 28.

Where: The Actors Company, 916 N. Formosa Ave., West Hollywood

Tickets: $25


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