Directed by Kevin Sluder (one half of Los Angeles based Sunshine Boy Productions’ award winning team along with his wife, Jennifer), Heartless tells the story of an overlooked corporate associate Shelby (Stacy Snyder) who struggles to complete a marketing presentation while a horrible secret tortures her conscience. It will be a homecoming of sorts for the Sluders, who met as students at UNC on Chapel Hill and are proud UNC alumni.
While working on set, a conversation about the best of Edgar Allan Poe’s works gave Kevin an idea. He’d long considered The Tell-Tale Heart as his favorite Poe work as it was not only macabre but also tragically human. “It speaks to the frailty of our nature and about guilt being an inescapable curse. On the way home from the shoot, this image got stuck in my head. It was this innocent, rising star exec staring at her reflection before a corporate presentation, having done something terrible the night before. I couldn’t shake it,” shares Kevin.
With Heartless, he wanted to make a film that paid homage to The Tell-Tale Heart and American Psycho with a troubled narrator that people could relate to, “I want audiences to be thrilled and truly horrified by what she does in this film. In the end, I hope I give audiences a fun, different, and thrilling new version of a classic Poe tale that they can enjoy again and again,” Kevin states.
Sunshine Boy Productions has found success on the film festival circuit previously, with their 2014 film noir short, Play Violet To Me, which was awarded an Audience Award at the NYLA International Film Festival and a Grand Jury Award at the LA Neo-Noir Film Fest. This success led to producing other artists’ films including Matt Mercer’s short horror film, Feeding Time, which won 8 accolades on the festival circuit including Best Director and Best Score at the Brooklyn Horror Film Festival.
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