Snapchat enthusiast Andrea Russett was challenged to take on a real life haunted house, Sickhouse, by one of her Twitter followers this past spring. Located near Calabasas, California, this eerie cabin is filled with a dark past, once inhabited by a former Hollywood producer and his ailing wife. The story followed Russett and her friends, as well as several actors who have large social media followings, while they take a trip to explore the Sickhouse.
The Snapchat film is based on actual live recordings shot on iPhones throughout the popular app, Snapchat, over the course of five days. It was first revealed live through 10 second snaps sent out via Russett’s Snapchat account, without any warning to fans that it was a scripted movie and not real life. Filmed entirely by phone, made just for your phone, the edited version of the movie runs about 68-minutes. Produced by Indigenous Media, written and directed by filmmaker Hannah Macpherson, launched on Vimeo for $5.99 on June 1st, after appearing on Andrea Russett snapchat story the previous month. Due to their success, they have been giving the greenlight this summer to make a sequel.
Jake Avnet, the Chief Operating Officer of Indigenous Films, was quoted saying, “We love the idea of creating premium content on new platforms, we think there are these great opportunities to tell these rich, quality stories natively on these platforms. What we want to do is figure out how to repackage them for other platforms. We’re not interested in making content that runs once and doesn’t appear anywhere else.” This statement made by Avnet serves as a guideline to future films recorded in this manner, providing a template to the future success of the Snapchat film business.
With the success of this Snapchat film, it goes to show the endless possibilities of modern day technology, specifically in social media. Soon enough the sequel to Sickhouse will be released and following that will more than likely be other Snapchat films. Only time will tell how the internet reacts to this new and exciting addition to the world of social media.
You can watch the trailer here, as well as purchase it for $5.99.
By: Alex Siminoff