Written, directed, and edited by Aaron Fradkin, Diet is a short horror film certain to give horror fans a five-minute feak-out–and a terrifying gut punch! Give it a spin and read more about Diet below.
Be careful what you eat…
Diet stars Wes Overby and features Fradkin as “Gavin Brackets” and Victoria Fratz as “The Monster”.
Over the last few months, Victoria (my girlfriend) and I have been putting together these short at-home horror films. And while each project had its own unique thing that excited us, I wanted to play around with the standard structure every horror short seems to follow: Girl home alone gets killed by a monster.
I started thinking of ways to reverse the predictable nature of most horror films while still keeping the things that make them scary. I thought it would be a funny idea if we made a short film that included every cliche in horror where you keep thinking the main character is going to die, but ends up just going about his ordinary life. Until the end when he dies naturally of something excruciatingly mundane (like choking on a carrot). And then, the cherry on top would be to reveal a terrifying monster who sighs with disappointment because she didn’t get to fulfill her duty as a scary monster who kills people. It was a lucky accident that my cat, Cheryl decided to jump into a shot and look for carrot treats around Wes (the lead’s) “dead” body. I let the camera keep rolling on that.
The entire short was made for the cost of a bag of carrots. We shot over 3 nights on my Blackmagic Ursa Mini Pro G2 and I was able to add in a few new After Effects skills I’ve picked up from YouTube lessons to complete the final shot. My friend Wes Overby was visiting that week and we all agreed he would be a perfect fit to break the stereotype. Victoria was the monster and, of course, I gave myself a cameo as Gavin Brackets, the malnourished carrot enthusiast on TV. I love when passion for the story takes over and everyone involved contributes a special nugget for the finished product, which is exactly what happened here.
The biggest reward has been feedback from viewers. As I read all the comments on YouTube and Reddit, I see audiences are split. Half of everyone fully understands the concept, calling it a “deconstructionist joke” while the other half assumes this is a film about a weird grandma carrot monster. It’s definitely a strange film, but as I watch it back I still think it’s creepy and weird and funny all at the same time.