Halloween Week

In this stylish, genre-bending ode to Italian Giallo and Hitchcock films, Bethany Watson (former co-host, Elvis Duran and the Morning Show) gives a stunning performance as Celeste, a lonely outcast who goes online to find a connection. When she does, a very special date night ensues.

Director’s Vision

I remember the exact moment I had the idea for the atmospherically creepy yet hilarious premise for my third short film Lonely Hearts. I was listening to my favorite true crime podcast Last Podcast On The Left and they were emphatically talking about a would-be serial killer who totally botched his first attempt at a catfish. It all came to me in a flash: what if this botched catfish didn’t end up with blood, gore, and the murder of yet another female victim on screen? What if this premise allowed for a new take on a tired genre? And what if we successfully catfish the audience into believing they are getting the run of the mill, slow build “lonely woman meets her doom through a dating app, oh god don’t go into the basement, are you kidding me” premise only to get a completely different film in the second half?

It was from this jumping off point that I pitched the idea to my creative (and real life) partner Bethany Watson who in turn helped me flesh out the character of Celeste and her want to belong in a world that won’t accept her…hobbies. I also began building the visual palette using the highly overlooked Giallo slasher genre as a loving homage to my Italian ancestry, as well as pulling from the slow build eeriness of Hitchcock for the first half. Bethany and I ended up putting together a tiny yet mighty crew including costume and production designer Anna Friemoth who, this being her first time at the helm of said duties, jumped in with relish and helped me create a visual style that I feel rivals some of the very best Giallo films.

After an incredible festival run including a coveted spot at the Academy Award Qualifying Nashville Film Festival’s Graveyard Shift this year and plans to develop the short into a series, I am so excited to share this online premiere with you all. I truly hope you enjoy the world of Lonely Hearts that we built!