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The Follower is a short film by Smudge Films and Nighthorse Productions, written and directed by Stephanie Szerlip, starring Logan Polish (The Astronaut Farmer) and Jack Kilmer (Palo Alto). The film premiered at the
21st Maryland Film Festival 2019 in Baltimore’s Station North Arts and Entertainment District.
Synopsis: "A bored teenage girl dying to escape her dreary suburban life is approached by a seductive stranger who offers to take her on a ride and show her a good time, but at what cost?
In this modern adaptation of the Joyce Carol Oates classic short story, Where are You Going, Where Have You Been?, rebellious teen Sophie Grace is left to her own devices when her parents go out,
taking her cell phone with them. She is intrigued at the arrival of two, seemingly cool, local teenagers. But as they become increasingly threatening, Sophie doubts whether these guys are as harmless and charming as they seem. As she realizes the inherent power they hold over her,
fear splinters her sweet, romantic reality, and the world spirals into a menacing, unfamiliar place when she decides to go with them, leaving behind the idealism of her childhood."
Following the film's narrative and central themes on girlhood, vanity, the precarity of social media and dangers of stalkers/followers, the art direction for the film's communication materials
situates the viewer in the position of a follower/stalker. The title design of the poster is flipped - on one hand reinforcing the imagery of a (cracked) mirror's reflection and its underlying themes on vanity and image-keeping, on the other - imagines the viewer as a follower behind the title.
The billing block's typography makes use of alternating tracking for the 2 typefaces (Impact and Helvetica Neue), a loose reference to signify closing and opening of distances while following someone secretly.