A short film produced in Ava was featured in the Upstate NY Horror Film Festival, which took place Oct. 1 and 2 in Rochester.
Adam Jackson, Adirondack High School Class of 2013, was thrilled to learn that his film, “Overgrown,” was being featured in the festival.
“I was shocked, absolutely,” said Jackson. “And happy, of course. Mostly shocked. It’s surreal to think that a film I made will be projected on a screen. In a movie theater! Totally wild and unexpected.”
“Overgrown” is about Adrienne and Sally, two sisters surviving in a post-apocalyptic world where most people in the world have disappeared into forests. Sally, the younger sister, has started to develop a connection with who (or what) resides in the trees surrounding their home. Adrienne, noticing her sister’s increasingly disturbing behavior, decides to investigate — leading to a set of disastrous consequences.
“Growing up right near the edge of the Adirondacks has always led me to a fascination with what lurks in forests that we can’t see,” Jackson said. “I think there’s a universal human curiosity and fear of the dark. It’s my personal commentary on the power of the connections we make with nature — both beautiful and dangerous. One of my biggest fears is the thought of getting lost in the forest while hiking or something. How will I find my way out? Is someone looking for me? Is something watching me? I think the hope one should have in making a horror movie is that the audience will empathize with what scares you...and be scared themselves in the process. That’s the fun of the experience.”
Jackson lived in Boonville for about twenty years, and is currently finishing his MFA in Screenwriting at Columbia University.
“It’s been a real journey to get to where I am,” he said. “I just finished my thesis work for Columbia this past week. I’m all done. But in undergrad (at SUNY Oswego), I started out as a Political Science major. I’ve always been invested in politics and wanted to do something with it, but got a bit disenchanted. I got pushed to take a creative writing class, non-fiction at first, but I signed up for screenwriting the next semester. My other love has been movies. And it just kind of stuck! I had a professor at Oswego - Juliet Giglio, a phenomenal teacher — who told me I should apply for grad school. I wouldn’t have believed someone five or six years ago if they told me that I’d be doing what I’m doing now.”
His future plan is to write for television. He is extremely grateful for all the help he received while putting “Overgrown” together.
“I’d just like to shout-out the cast and crew, from in and outside Columbia, for their dedication and hard work on this project,” Jackson said. “It wouldn’t be the success it is without them. A special thanks goes out to the students at the Berklee College of Music in Boston for composing the music, and sound design for the film. We filmed this all the way back in June of 2019, in Ava. I’m proud we were able to do this project locally and showcase the area.”