Rebecca Berrih’s Glitch will be premiering at the upcoming Dances with Films Festival on June 18th this year. This short film acts as a thrilling proof of concept for what Berrih hopes will one day become a feature-length film.
Glitch showcases the eerie interaction between a mother and daughter on FaceTime when the mother realizes that there is a mysterious creature in her daughter’s apartment that can only be seen via the phone screen. The trailer for the film perfectly captures how truly horrifying this situation would be.
This bone-chilling concept came to director Berri, of Elysian Fields Entertainment, in a nightmare. After calling up her close friend and producer Marianne Maddalena, who produced Scream (1996), the two embarked on the project to make Glitch a reality and turn this nightmare into a short film.
The film showcases actress Heather Langenkamp as the mother, who started her career as Nancy Thompson in Wes Craven’s horror, A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984). Maya Stojan plays the part of the daughter, and she is best known for her recurring roles in popular series Castle (2009-2016) and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013-2020).
Behind the scenes, Berrih worked with a group of experienced filmmakers to create the short film. In addition to Maddalena acting as the film’s Executive Producer, Berrih also worked with Castle Rock Entertainment’s Courtney Shepard, and creator of Pixels (2015), Patrick Jean, as co-producers.
Zach Staenberg worked as the film’s editor, with his previous projects including The Matrix (1999), and Lord of War (2005). The visual effects of the film were supervised by Charles H. Joslain and Izzy Traub, and were executed by a group of VFX artists in Ukraine.
In order to film the short as a FaceTime conversation, Maya Stojan first acted out all of the daughter’s scenes by herself, and then they were edited into their final product. Then, Helen Langenkamp was filmed reacting to these scenes on an iPad. In total, the film required 38 versions in order to reach its full potential.
Glitch was written and filmed during the COVID-19 pandemic, but the crew made sure to adhere to all rules and regulations in order to preserve the safety of all those involved in the creation of the short film.
Speaking on the message of Glitch, Berrih says, “I made the film during the lockdown when the whole planet was relying on technology to communicate with one another. The idea that technology, the one thing that helped us cope with the lockdown, could turn against us would be terrifying.”
The short film is four minutes long, and Berrih anticipates that it will one day act as the opening scene to a feature-length version of the same concept. This would follow the path of many horror staples that were first developed as shorts, such as Lights Out (2016), Mama (2016), and Saw (2004).
Berrih says that she was inspired by the opening scenes of Scream (1996), The Conjuring (2013), Jaws (1975), and Halloween (1978) when creating the short film. She notes, “I’ll do my absolute best to make the beginning of the feature memorable and special.”
Berrih has now written the script for the feature-length version of Glitch, which focuses on the ideas of surveillance, technology, and creation. She hopes that the premiere of the short film will show the promising concept behind Glitch and demonstrate her directorial abilities.
When the short film premieres, Berrih hopes that viewers will leave thrilled that they have witnessed her scary, emotional, and exciting creation. She plans that Glitch will properly entertain its audience and inspire studios to help execute her vision of Glitch as a feature-length film in the future.
Viewers can buy tickets in advance of the showing at the Chinese Theater in Hollywood on June 18th at 11:45 p.m.