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Writer/director David Ferino’s feature directorial debut, “Wardcliffe,” starring Joel McKinnon Miller (“The Staircase,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” “Big Love”) and Shane Coffey (“Pretty Little Liars,” “Good Girls”).

Inspired by real events, Ferino’s script takes place over the course of a single day as Dennis (Miller) and his son Ronnie (Coffey) quarantine together during the 2020 pandemic lockdown. Decades of tension escalate to a boiling point when the two find themselves confined inside. And as the outside world is seized by confusion and terror, the gulf between the men becomes ever more pronounced, and ever more destructive.

“Wardcliffe” is produced and independently financed by Roger M. Mayer (“The Oregonian,” “Antibirth,” “The Rambler”) through his production company, Brooklyn Reptyle.

“When I first heard of this news event in 2020, I knew it had the right criteria for a first feature. The film could be made on a small production scale, but with big emotional weight. It’s a tragedy that encapsulates the heightened anxiety we collectively shared throughout the pandemic,” commented Ferino. “It was also an incredible experience to shoot in my hometown of Peoria, Illinois, as well as in nearby Elmwood. The local communities generously opened their doors to us and supported our production — we couldn’t have done it without them.”

“Wardcliffe” marks Ferino’s first full-length narrative project. In 2012, he co-directed feature documentary “Cure for Pain: The Mark Sandman Story,” which was repped by Gersh and distributed by Cinetic. Ferino is also well-established on the genre festival circuit with his short films, including “The Fortune Teller” (2019), which premiered at L.A.’s Screamfest and was selected to be a permanent fixture on the festival’s web channel; “Nocturnally Yours” (2017), which premiered at Fantasia and took home bronze for international short; “Emptied” (2014), starring Beck Bennett and Mackenzie Davis, which also premiered at Fantasia and can now be seen on YouTube’s central horror hub Alter. Ferino has also directed spots for Google, Vice, Intel, P&G and NBC-Universal.

Joel McKinnon Miller is repped by Ethan Salter at Greene Talent and Shane Coffey by agent Gabe Watkins at Pakula King & Associates and manager Paul Brown at Industry Entertainment.

Wardcliffe wrapped principal photography just prior to the SAG-AFTRA strike, and is set to hit the festival circuit in 2024.



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