Shadows of St. Siena Hospital
Horror films have become a series of jump scares and cliches. We hope this film will remind people of what true terror feels like. It's a ghost story about a young woman hiding from her fears, and the lingering shadows of a small hospital using them against her.
Inclusion StatementMost audiences often forget the history of female empowerment in horror, we hope to reinforce it with our own lead protagonist. We're still in early production, and hope to keep it diverse on both sides of the camera. Currently comprising of only two men, we're hoping for a lead female producer.
About The Project
Piper has dropped out of medical school for unknown reasons. Afraid to face her dominating mother, she ventures to a strange village where she believes her uncle to be located. Instead, she inherits her now late uncle's hospital: a small house up on a hill. With no other option, Piper stays there. Guilt-ridden by her secrets, Piper begins having surrealistic nightmares, generated by presences watching her in the house.
WHY THIS STORY?
Aside from what we hope to bring back to the genre, both the writer and director loved the idea of surrealistic dreams & nightmares playing a crucial part in a ghost story. This sort of bed & breakfast sized hospital being the key set in a nightmare world was very appealing. Eventually we began to add the character of this young woman inheriting this building in a strange place. Underneath its basic plot, it is a story about guilt, as well as the dominating male presences left in the hospital, and how they attempt to affect the mind of this young woman.
Both the writer and director felt that the majority of modern-day horror films have been comprised of mostly jump scares, loud noises, and countless other cliches. Visually they all look the same: a desaturated color palette comprised of greens, greys, and yellows. We wanted to bring horror as a genre back to its visually driven roots; from the glory days of Giallo films of the 60's and 70's. Directors such as Mario Bava and Dario Argento were major inspirations for the project. Eventuially our inspirations grew beyond that, from places both typical like The Shining & Eraserhead to The Young Doctor's Notebook & the films of Powell & Pressburger. We hope our love letter to the genre will be a project worth backing, and a refreshing story in the current age of horror.
The visuals of our film are the top priority. Argento's Suspiria was the go-to for how we want the film to look. Primary colors being used as often as possible, and avoiding the desaturated palette that typically comes with modern day digitally shot horror productions. With funding, we hope to find a diverse Director of Photography with a passion for this look as much as we have for it.
After the visuals, a musical score would be a close second for importance to our story. Iconic horror themes are an extra shot to the arm for almost any memorable film. With backing, we hope to find a composer with a love for such artists as Wendy Carlos, Goblin, and Angelo Badalamenti. Someone who will add another unique voice to this ghost tale.
The hospital is a small building, located in a strange, other-worldly village. From Eraserhead, we were looking at older/historic villages in the Long Island and Upstate NY areas. Visually we hope to use some romantic forms of archetecture, adding another layer of surrealism to the story.
With initial funding, we're asking for basic necessities. We will secure better gear such as a Steadicam, possibly a dolly, and more lighting equipment. Crafty, such as snacks and meals. Securing locations would be next, getting the right permits and insurance. We would put funding towards higher quality props and special effects. Prop production would be for odd instruments found within the hospital, such as below from Dead Ringers. Lastly, we will begin to seek out department heads: people passionate for this project as much as we are. A lead producer being the biggest need for our crew, hoping to find a female producer.
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About This Team
Michael La Gattuta (Director/Producer/Editor) - Mike is a life-long horror movie fan. He's been a director on a wide variety of short films, music videos, and commercials. He has a bachelor's degree in Film/Video and a background in advertising.
Louis Matta (Writer/Executive Producer) was born in Brooklyn, NY. Aside from writing and directing, he has experience as an editor, producer's assistant, assistant director, and script supervisor on a number of other productions. His work has been seen at the Big Apple Film Festival, the Fright Night Film Festival, Lone Star Con, and featured on Ain't It Cool News.