The Girl in the Cornfield (2016) When her kid sister Tiffany gets sick at a slumber party, Heather and best friend Corrine take her home after midnight. While driving through a seemingly endless stretch of farmland, they encounter a mysterious girl in a white dress who turns out to be far more than she seems.
Genre: Mystery, Horror
Actor: Briana Aceti, Madeline Lupi, Tina Duong
Director: Ryan Callaway
Country: United States
Duration: 81 min
Shady Dawn Pictures’ next feature length horror film, “The Girl in the Cornfield”, is late in post-production and a rough cut has already been screened for select fans.
“One of the best horror films I’ve watched in a long time,” one viewer in Texas commented after watching the film.
Best friends Heather and Corrine are on their way home around midnight with Heather’s little sister Tiffany in the backseat. When Heather begins to fall asleep at the wheel she doesn’t see a figure in a white dress stumbling onto the road until it’s too late. After a vicious impact, they exit the car to help but the woman has vanished, leaving behind only a trail of blood. Unable to find her, the friends decide to report it to the police and return home.
But that night both of them realize that someone or something has followed them and its intentions are far more horrific than they could’ve imagined.
Director Ryan Callaway and his wife Amy spent the first half of 2015 producing a film based on Ryan’s novel, “The Yearly Harvest”. The couple are expecting a baby girl in February (Adeline Cadence) and planned to focus on promoting “The Yearly Harvest” until next summer instead of filming anything new. So what spurred the production of a second film?
From the Director:
“After 8 months of working on The Yearly Harvest, I was looking forward to a break but thanks to my wife and co-producer Amy, I had another story I was excited to explore.”
Last September we took a vacation in Lancaster, PA and there was a big cornfield behind our hotel. We like to entertain ourselves by driving down dark, spooky roads so that night we parked behind the building. At some point she mentioned a girl in the cornfield. I looked but it was dark, and huge, so I didn’t see anyone. She goes, “you don’t see her?” I’m straining my eyes but I don’t. She pointed and said “she’s right there!” I looked… the car was quiet… and then Amy screamed and scared the hell out of me. Had to give her props for that.
But that cruel prank stuck in my head, particularly because with my imagination I was seeing a woman in a white dress walking through the stalks. So a year later I knew I wanted to do something with it. Thus giving birth to this film.”
The Girl in the Cornfield filmed primarily in New Jersey, with the cornfield scenes shot in one of the Garden States’ many haunted corn maizes, “The Cornfield of Terror” at R and J Farm in Egg Harbor City, NJ.
Although “The Yearly Harvest” starred Tiffany Browne-Tavarez and Linda McLaughlin, two actresses Ryan has worked with extensively in the past, he cast two new actresses in the leading roles for “Cornfield”. Newcomer Briana Aceti stars as Heather Morris, with Madeline Lupi as her younger sister, Tiffany. Tina Duong plays Corrine, the supportive best friend. Madeline, 12, was nominated for Best Performance in a Short film at the 2015 Young Artists Awards for her work in “Milkshake”.
“It was a bit of a risk casting two actresses I’d never worked with before in leading roles,” Ryan said, “but it paid off. They were both terrific, which I expected from Tina considering her experience, but for Briana’s first gig the script asked a lot of her – crying, screaming, and all the usual that goes along with horror films. And she delivered. Madeline had a small role in the Yearly Harvest but she was such a pleasure to work with and one of the most talented actresses I’ve seen, so I wrote the character of Tiffany specifically for her.”
Tiffany Browne-Tavarez does make an appearance as a tenacious reporter, and Victoria Guthrie also plays the adoptive mother of Corrine.
The role of the mysterious title character “The Girl in the Cornfield” went to Mollie Sperduto, an entertainment professional Ryan met on the set of “The Yearly Harvest”. She appeared in a scene as an extra and reminded the director of Ashley Bell’s character in “The Last Exorcism.” “I knew I had to do something with that resemblance in the future, so when this script came about Mollie was the first person I thought of. She has a very distinct, classy look, that I think suites this type of character perfectly. And as for the scary aspect, I rarely get creeped out on the set – in editing all the time – but virtually never on the set. Once in a while though I’d get so caught up in what I was seeing through the lens with Mollie that it threw me off my game. And hopefully our audience will have the same experience.”