Nick Kroll’s latest film, “Olympic Dreams,” is the first feature length movie to ever be filmed during an ongoing Olympic Games in the athlete’s village.
The film tells the story of how a volunteer dentist and cross country skier have their own paths cross while abroad in Pyeongchang during the 2018 Winter Olympics; it is touching, human, and as authentic as could be.
The romantic comedy, which stars and was written by Big Mouth actor/writer Nick Kroll and long distance Greek Olympian runner Alexi Pappas was filmed within the hectic two weeks of the games on a single camera by Jeremy Teicher, the director and Pappas’ husband.
“It was just the three of us,” Kroll told amNewYork Metro.
That story concept came from the 2016 summer games in Rio de Janeiro, when Pappas (who was with Teicher at the time) had been approached by a doctor for a date — which she politely declined, according to Kroll.
“It was really their idea [that] they brought to me,” Kroll said, adding that he’s been a “lifelong lover of the Olympics,” particularly since the 1988 games in Seoul, South Korea.
In that spirit, the rest of the Olympic Dreams cast was entirely comprised of athletes competing in those and other games, many of whom Kroll interviewed in his dental chair and elsewhere throughout the Olympic Village.
“I was, at times, scared to poke a future gold medalist in the mouth,” Kroll said, noting his dental research for the role came out of “one whole YouTube video.”
According to the actor, Alexi would run out to Olympians in the dining hall and ask if they wanted to be in a movie with Nick Kroll, to which many responded, “We don’t know who that is.”
One prominent Olympian-turned-movie star that was well aware of who Kroll is: Gus Kenworthy, who’s kiss to then-boyfriend Matthew Wilkas made world headlines during the 2018 games.
The relationship shared between Kroll’s and Pappas’ characters of Ezra and Penelope, respectively, delves into the humanity of what happens to an athlete who doesn’t medal at the Olympics — and what people from star-crossed worlds can teach each other through example.
“Olympic Dreams” is packed with romantic suspense, legitimate innocence and heartwarming scenes shot in the frozen mountains of South Korea.
“All we see is gold medal celebrations,” Kroll said, adding that the film gives a “never before seen look into the Olympic Village” with a one of a kind, authentic story.
Kroll also mentioned that he’s been known to read this publication on the subway while in NYC.
Olympic Dreams will be in theaters on Valentine’s Day.
Ezra and Penelope on an Olympic slope. (Courtesy of IFC Films. An IFC Films Release)