Luna is an award-winning horror short directed by Ross Williams and starring Zoe Williams. The film was shot on a small budget of 3k could be considered a passion project by director Ross Williams.
The ghost-girl trope is something most horror fans are familiar with. Originally a staple of Asian horror films, breakout hits like The Grudge and The Ring made the genre popular with more western audiences. The myth originally stems from Japan, where this specific kind of ghost is referred to as Yūrei (幽霊). Most common depictions have the matt-black hair draped over the face, the white clothing, and the outstretched hands. Luna tries to put a modern (and western) twist on the trope and—in my humble opinion—does a pretty decent job thereof.
It’s easy to see why Luna has picked up a Best Cinematography award at the Oregon Scream Film Festival; the short is beautifully shot and impeccably edited. Even the copy that we were sent for review was high quality and visually fantastic—something I always appreciate. Many shorts are too dark, too shaky, too blurred, or a combination thereof to make up for the small budget and the cheap effects. Luna is details and high-definition; a film that wants you to watch it.
Zoe Williams does a great job in the title role; her walks, crawls and cackles all top-notch and honestly impressive for such a young star. The film’s runtime barely hits the eight-minute mark so it’s really hard to objectively comment on the rest of the cast as most have several seconds of dialogue at best. That said, the short has a very crisp, clean, and professional feel…though I must say I found Miss Williams a little too cute to be creepy.
The film is set to premiere on October 25th on the director’s YouTube page with the countdown currently running (click “page”). It’s definitely worth a watch so give it a bookmark and look forward to some wholesome family horror. Thanks for reading and as always, stay sordid. Director bio, backstory, and inspiration posted below.
Ross Williams grew up in Scott Valley, California during the 80’s. As a kid, he was deeply influenced by the movies he saw on HBO, but it wasn’t until his mid-twenties that he figured out he wanted to make films of his own. In 2002, his first short film “eRATicate”, a super-8, B&W horror-comedy about a pair of killer rats, garnered him a few film festival awards and some mild attention. He’s been largely ignored since. But for the past 12 years, he’s soldiered on, writing, directing & editing narrative films, documentaries, music videos and commercials, mostly so he can laugh at his own jokes. He lives in southern Oregon with his wife and two kids, where he owns and operates XRATS Productions, producing local commercials, product videos, business profiles and the like. He continues to dream big, hone his craft and always looking for new ways to stretch his filmmaking dollar. He’s slowly working towards making his first feature film. Find his work at http://www.XRATS.net
Luna is a new horror-short film from director Ross Williams and XRATS Productions. It is being released on October 25th, 2019 on XRATS YouTube page https://youtube.com/xrats. The film debuted at the Ashland Independent Film Festival in April of 2019. It played at ten film festivals around the country and won two awards, Best Cinematography at the Oregon Scream Week Festival and Best Supporting Actress for Zoe Williams at Videoscream International Film Festival. The film was shot in Etna, California over three days in November 2018 with a small crew and a budget of about $3000.
The film was inspired by my daughter Zoe when she was about six years old. She could creep my wife and I out by sneaking into our bedroom or just looking at us strangely. One time while we were camping my wife took a photo of her in shadow, with her hair all crazy, and she looked like a ghost. I’ve been making films for almost 20 years now, and I love horror films in particular, so that image inspired me to make a movie with her as the ghost. There are so many films with little kid ghosts, so I wanted to come up with my own spin on it, something that would play with the genre. I don’t want to give away the idea that I came up with, so the film isn’t spoiled, but once that idea came, I just had to make the film. I wrote a script, but it took a couple more years to actually make, I wanted her to be older and more directable, plus it takes a lot of time and effort to make a film with no budget.
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