Bruce and Dom

Welcome to

Welcome to, your font of knowledge for everything related to the Mike Varley project “Bruce and Dom: Transcripts from a Burgeoning Relationship.” Here’s how it works:

Step one: Subscribe the the “Bruce and Dom” mailing list.  Every week, you will get a new chapter of the story along with trivia about the film and insight into Mike Varley’s creative back collection:

Step two:  Social Network Explosion!!!

Subscribe at the “B and D” Youtube page, like us on “B and D” Facebook and subscribe on the “B and D” Twitter.  Your life will instantly become filled with joy.

Step three: check out the site.  Here’s what the various pages have to offer:

News: This page right here.  Use it to track weekly releases of content, festival news and other events.

WatchCatch up to date with the latest episode of “Bruce and Dom.”

ListenListen to episodes of “Bruce and Dom: The Radio Play,” a companion piece to the movie.

About:  I take three cracks at solving this thing for ya.

ContactI’m quite the correspondence.

Trailer: Alternately, at the top of the screen.

BuyDVD’s for sale with bonuses!

Thanks for visiting and come back soon.



Thanks SXSW 2013!

Big thanks to everyone in Austin for receiving me so kindly and for Sasona by Sasona West for hosting a viewing of the film.  I had a great time while visiting and it’s always a pleasure to show the film to new audiences.

For those coming to check out more of my work, check out the following sites.

My Youtube page

The Youtube page for The AD Reading Series

Take care for now,

Mike Varley

Bruce and Dom: The Full Feature

Hello Everyone,

For all those folks interested in watching the full version of “Bruce and Dom” in one sitting rather than episodically, you now can do so streaming online right here:

You can also purchase a DVD version of the film with deleted scenes and bonus features here.  Whichever way you consume it, I hope you enjoy.

Scene Twenty-Two – For the Last Time

“Bruce and Dom” Scene Twenty Two: For the Last Time

Several weeks removed from their last conversation, Dom goes to pick up some things from Bruce’s.

Bruce and Dom Trivia

This is the final episode of the serialized version of Bruce and Dom.  I sincerely appreciate all of you that stuck around till the end.  As I type, a DVD version of the film is being made to watch the whole film in one session, complete with deleted scenes and all that jazz.  If you’re interested in having a copy, please reply to this email and I’ll send one your way.

Thanks again for your support.  From here out, I’ll be sending sporadic emails regarding all my creative projects separate from Bruce and Dom.  I hope you continue to follow along.

Regards, Mike Varley

“From the Future: The AD Reading Series”

As you may have seen from the last email, The AD Reading Series is a writing exhibition I’ve set up that showcases NYC poetry and prose.  The next edition takes place this Friday from 8-10 PM at 7 Dunham in Brooklyn.  For more info, click here.

Scene Twenty One: Cupid’s Good-bye


“Bruce and Dom” Scene Twenty One: Cupid’s Goodbye

Richie has a message for all the haters. 

Bruce and Dom Trivia

Richie Sempowich is the name of the young man dressed in the Catholic school uniform, playing air piano and constantly suppressing a smirk. He taught me firsthand the humor and humility in working with children actors.

His most particular contribution was in the editing room. In the scene “Cupid’s Goodbye,” Richie was asked to sit quietly with a CD player on his lap until someone told him otherwise. Everyone in the room turned their backs to Richie in order to prevent him from giggling. It took four takes, but we got it.

Since that scene was void of talking, we often used it in the sound design stage to patch up fluky sections of audio. It took us a year of being constantly perplexed by the mysterious, omnipresent clicking noises of the movie before we realized our supposedly pristine audio was actually a recording of Richie sporadically flicking the AM/FM switch on the CD player. No one caught it because we all had our backs to him.

These humblings aside, Richie was a vital component to “Bruce and Dom,” providing a youth and innocence that keeps the film buoyant. I look forward to him disavowing the experience in his teen years only to re-embrace it in college.

From the Archives: “The Death of Common Sense//The Death of Innocents”

These pants were the first in my clothing to canvas series of works.  Regular jeans were treated with bleach and then stenciled and painted with acrylic.  For a look at both sides of this piece, click the link.

Scene Twenty – The Logical Conclusion

“Bruce and Dom” Scene Twenty:   The Logical Conclusion

Bruce and Dom have their final conversation:

Bruce and Dom Trivia

This is the longest scene in Bruce and Dom.

From the Archives: “A Tag Sale Fairy Tale”

This short story was written way back in the spring of 2005.  It’s a romantic comedy about two yard sale junkies meeting on the Long Island garage sale circuit.  Click the link to download the PDF or listen to the recording.

Scene Nineteen – The Night Before

“Bruce and Dom” Scene Nineteen:   The Night Before

With the big talk coming tomorrow, Bruce and Dom have a little chat: 

Bruce and Dom Trivia

‘The Night Before’ contains a reference to the Mountain Goats song “Palmcorder Yanja” off the album “We Shall All Be Healed.” It is one of multiple references to music performers in the film. The first scene, in which Dom is going crazy trying to remember a melody, is based on the Tom Tom Club song “Genius of Love”. Bob Dylan’s “Stuck Inside of Mobile (with the Memphis Blues Again)” is quoted directly in ‘The Creative Ultimatum”. A whole scene reflecting on Dylan’s catalogue was removed for pacing purposes.

“From the Archives: Community Pointillism” 

“The Nail Project: Community Pointillism” was part two of a semester long thesis project I did at Geneseo involving the entire college community.  A 5,000+ box grid was drawn out, each box representing a different faculty or student who had a right to nail in a ‘pixel’ to complete an image.  Click the link for the full story.

Scene Eighteen – Bruce-iloquoy

“Bruce and Dom” Scene Eighteen: Bruce-iloquoy

With Dom fast asleep, Bruce relates her hopes and dreams:

Bruce and Dom Trivia

‘Bruce-iloquoy’ is my favorite scene of the film.

From the Archives: “A Night at the Rinks”

A Night at the Rinks was written in February of 2007 while I was living at Sasona Co-op in Austin, TX. It’s a non-fiction account of a trip to a minor league hockey game.  Check out the link for a PDF and audio version.

Scene Seventeen – Car Fight

“Bruce and Dom” Scene Seventeen:   Car Fight

Returning from a weekend visiting the parents, things get heated in the car:

Bruce and Dom Trivia

Location three of the film was the church basement of St. Patrick’s Parish in Huntington, New York. Permission was granted to us to film there by the late Alan Jones, my uncle and a wonderful, caring man. In the basement is a stage with a red velvet curtain, perfect for the more dramatic tones of the film’s concluding act.

From the Archives: “We Know You Know I Know”

We Know You Know I Know is a non-fiction piece from 2008 detailing a run-in I had with a clothing designer who sought take my ideas and make them her own without giving proper credit.  Check out the link for both the text and the audio version.

Scene Sixteen – The Creative Ultimatum

“Bruce and Dom” Scene Sixteen:  The Creative Ultimatum

Dom asks Bruce what she liked about his project and complications arise:

Bruce and Dom Trivia

One interesting thing to consider about Bruce and Dom is the take count. For the first two-thirds of the movie, everything is done in one take. This is done for two reasons. One, it is to reaffirm the idea that this is a transcript they are reading, not a script. To refine the performance is to change knowledge and delivery into something closer to a read-through of a movie script. The aim is to capture organic reaction on camera.

The second is to observe the almost coincidental moments of art and humor that come in these untrained, unrefined moments. There are things very rarely recorded with intention behind it.

From the Archives: “Reflections on Foreign Things Found in Her Drawer”

Reflections on Foreign Things Found in Her Drawer is part of the clothing-as-canvas series from my early twenties.  It is a story about salvage missions and the price of things that pose as free.  The materials used are old undershirts.  The text is spray paint stencil.

Scene Fifteen – The Artist Statement

“Bruce and Dom” Scene Fifteen:     The Artist Statement

Dom describes the intention behind his latest project: 

Bruce and Dom Trivia

“The Artist Statement” marks the only appearance in the film of “Bruce and Dom” co-conspirator Mark Eicher. Mark and I weren’t just a part of the crew, we were the crew for the film. Mark was also behind the controls as we edited the film together. Without him, the finished product would have been twice as long and half as good. Like everyone else in this show, Mark has no idea what he was getting into when he signed on for this, but he saw it through and performed admirably in the face of absurdity. Thanks, Mark.

From the Archives: “Dylan’s Claim”

Dylan’s Claim is a coming-of-age novella I wrote in the second half of 2006.  When a young boy discovers a collapsing sea wall and the works of John Locke at the same time, he gets the idea to rehab the wall and claim it as his own.  In the process, he begins to understand what it means to be an adult in the world.  Click the link to download a copy or listen to a reading.