• Director

    Samuel Russell, Christopher Maher

  • Country, Year, Length

    United States, 2020, 01:18:42

  • Category

    Narrative Feature

  • Format


  • Festival Year



Three 20-something detectives are plagued with insecurities and indecision as they begin their detectiving careers. With Christmas on the horizon, the detectives take a vacation. Meanwhile a case they’ve neglected has snowballed in their absence, and the responsibility draws them back into danger.


Samuel Russell & Christopher Maher
Writer, Director, Producer
Samuel Russell – “Samuel”
Christopher Maher – “Grimwald Grimly”
Conor Bell – “Chauncy McGroob”
Maris Jones – “Holly Jones”
Molly Schneider – “Natalie”
Nicole Thompson – “Sydney Baker”
Thomas Baik – “Snake Eyes”
Mara Santilli – “Snake Eyes”
Jack Coen – “John Atticus”
Brian Russell – “Mr. Police Man”
Zoe Williamson – “Janice”

Director Statement

Bad Tiding’s was made with a micro-budget and a skeleton crew. We wrote a scene-by-scene outline of the film, then specifics and dialogue were improvised. The film was shot in the winter after graduating from college, and the goal was to capture our early-20s anxieties within the pulpy trappings of film noir.

Director Biography

Christopher Maher and Samuel B Russell met at film school where they collaborated on films about robots, bird puppets, and insecure vikings. They are the writing/directing team behind Bad Tidings.

Sam works as a video editor and lives with two cats and four plants. He loves movies, podcasts, naps, baths, and pecans. Bad Tidings is his first feature film, and he hopes to make many more. His current greatest influences include Miyazaki, the Wachowskis, Ang Lee, Jacques Demy, and his friends. His goals for future projects include telling stories about strength in community and innate human kindness, imagining brighter futures, and exploring/expanding the visual language of uniquely digital filmmaking.

Christopher Maher is a high school teacher in Brooklyn and lives with so many plants but no cats. Bad Tidings is his first feature film. He loves writing, reading books, outer space, cooking, and playing board games (including Dungeons & Dragons). His favorite authors include Ursula Le Guin, William Gibson, and Jorge Borges, and his favorite filmmakers include Paul Thomas Anderson, Hayao Miyazaki, Werner Herzog, and George Miller. In the future he wants to tell stories focused on curiosity, compassion, and community, hopefully with some wonky narrative structures (but not in a showboaty way).