HORROR Festival Best Scene Script Reading: The Man In The Hat, by Phyllis Allison

Thirty years have passed since Beth’s sister vanished, believed to be taken by a child predator, but when a woman posts a tale on the internet eerily similar to Beth’s own experience, she is forced to admit THE MAN IN THE HAT is real, but not like us. This time around he’s playing tricks with her daughter. If this is a recurrence, there are only three nights left to stop him or her daughter will suffer the same fate as her sister.

CAST LIST:
Narrator: Steve Rizzo
Alicia: Julie Sheppard
Beth: Val Cole

Director Biography – David Fugett (THE HIKE)

A graduate from the first class of filmmaking at The University of North Carolina School of the Arts. Creator of the webseries MALO CASA in 2008, recognized by the 12th Annual Webby Awards in the “Dramatic Series” category. Married to Michelle for 29 years. One child, Daniel who is an honor student at Cal Poly majoring in aerospace engineering.

Director Statement

Being the only son of a young, single mother who worked a full-time job during the day and was a cocktail waitress at night, I was fortunate that for relaxation she went to see movies and she drug me along with staunch “no talking during the movie” warnings. She sensed I was imaginative, well adjusted and stable enough to watch stories unfold at 24 frames per second in that magical place she called a theatre. Up to that point, my movie watching was limited to Shock Theatre and Dr. Creep every Saturday night on WKEF 22 in Dayton, Ohio. Shock Theatre was usually a double feature of horror/thriller movies including Universal & Hammer horror classics. But a 19 inch screen couldn’t compete with that humongous screen at the Page Manor theatre in Dayton. My fondest cinematic memories of sitting in the dark with my hard working Mom include falling in love with Faye Dunaway in BONNIE & CLYDE and feeling Steve McQueen’s ultimate cool resonate off the screen as well as having my ass rocked by the greatest car chase ever filmed in BULLITT. But when I walked out of DELIVERANCE, my 12 year old brain was filled with images not easily forgotten at that age. That film resonated with me for a long time. The mold had been cast. I already knew I wanted to tell stories. But now, I knew I wanted to make a film like DELIVERANCE.

Fast forward 40 years. Having been married to my soul mate Michelle for 29 years and with a son in college who is one of the most remarkable young men I’ve ever known, I’ve become a hopeless romantic. I enjoy a good love story, be it TITANIC, THE NOTEBOOK or BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN. I respond to characters in a relationship who go through all the highs and lows of being in love. They meet, they have sex, they break up, they reunite. Simple but glorious when well written and well cast. So when I sat down to write another screenplay in 2011, the two genres had…let me put it this way – Mr.Thriller met Ms.Romance for a drink. The chemistry between the two was palpable. They were made for each other. They went back to Ms.Romance’s apartment and banged like bunnies till they passed out in an orgasmic, drunken stupor. Nine months later, THE HIKE was born. (it actually took 2 years to write). THE HIKE isn’t for everybody. Never intended it to be. I’m not a filmmaker for the masses. The language the bad guy spews is vile, disgusting. The serial killers in my head don’t speak like Hannibal Lecter. Nor do they act wacked out like Buffalo Bill. They’re charming. They’re manipulative. They tell you what they’re going to do to you. They’re in your neighborhood. They’re true psychopaths living amongst us. They’re unlike any serial killer we’ve seen on screen.