Official Selection FFTG Awards 2020 Laurel

The Deft

15 mins
United States


Play Video


Siblings Zach and Esther struggle to deal with the emotional impact of their father’s recent death. While they attempt to cope in different ways their sibling bond deteriorates after Zach’s friend, Carter, moves back to town.


The Deft

Original Title: 


Production Year: 




Dawson Ehlke – “Zach” (Christmas Break In, Next Door, The Unicorn, Emily, We are Kickball, Master Servant, Oh My Stars, Dust and Ashes)
Elora Riley  – “Esther” (Away We Go, Haunting the Haunted, Nite Out, Oregon Road, Fem 101, Utopia Planetia)
Dominic Rodgers – “Carter”
Joseph Bezenek – “Detective Rogers” (The Lumber Baron, Aperture Part 1, Satellite Drop, Mogadishu Minnesota)
Veronica Wayne – “Dr. Terzinski” (The Christmas You Don’t Know, Patterns of the Heart, Mine and Yours)


Ruth Maramis (Hearts Want, Master Servant), E.N. Reynolds (The Chancla, Good & Truly, Girl Stuff, Minor Mysteries, Patterns of the Heart), Nathan Lipinski, Josh Helmer, Brian Aseltine


E.N. Reynolds (The Chancla, Minor Mysteries, Good and Truly, Catching Pears)


John Lampson and Sebastian Schnabel

Dir. of Photography: 

Thomas “T.J.” Schwingle (Duel; Clear; Selfied; Trophy Husband; In an Instant; Dawning; Midnight Chronicles)

Director's Interview

Play Video




Short Films under 40 minutes


United States



Director's Statement

Even from a young age I have been inspired to write and create new worlds through storytelling. After a sit down pitch meeting with a producer who was interested in my feature film script, he asked me why I would want to direct the film when I had never directed a psychological thriller before. I replied to him that women, in general, have not been given the same opportunities to direct films, let alone psychological thrillers. It was after that meeting that I decided to write and direct my short film, The Deft. Instead of complaining or giving up after I was questioned about my capabilities, I took it as a challenge in order to prove that female writers/directors are just as capable as the men in successfully creating a film in the psychological thriller genre. I hope that this film offers suspense and intrigue, and will delight all fans of psychological thrillers.

Also See

Dark Hearts

One-way mirror

If you are where I’m not

Juan y Cande

an eight letter word starting with A

The Fix