• Director

    Matthew J. Kaplan

  • Country, Year, Length

    United States, 2018, 9 min

  • Category

    Short Narrative

  • Format


  • Festival Year


Cast: Maya Rosewood, Jun Naito, Mickey Ryan, Patrick Devaney
Crew: Producers: Katherine Chan , Patrick Devaney , Matthew J. Kaplan, Karen Morris – Screenwriters: Matthew J. Kaplan – Director of Photography: Jake Horgan – Assistant Director: Karen Morris – Special Effects Make-Up: Beatrice Sniper – Art Director: Patricia Buckheit – Assistant Camera: Samuel A Campbell – Gaffer: Jonathan Alvarado – Best Boy: Wellington Lee – Sound: Gary Levitt

After the death of their young daughter, all that remains in Rebecca and Allen’s home is an extensive toy collection and profound grief. Both are attempting to process their loss: Rebecca chooses to repress her pain, while Allen regresses to their child’s age in order to replace her. When an unconventional therapist visits with them, he assures Rebecca he can bring her husband back. But first, she must enter into Allen’s land of make-believe.

Matthew J. Kaplan is a writer, filmmaker, actor, and musician. His short film It’s Time for Tea began screening 2019. Other works include the feature Zombie Extra, the TV series Reggie & Reinhardt, the web series Disturbances and the animated pilot Matty & Patty. Matthew was born in Brooklyn and still lives there with his two cats Clementine and Bumpy.

Filmmaker’s Note

It’s Time for Tea was born out of an improvised scene about a parent playing with their deceased child’s toys. I first wrote it as a sketch, but soon realized there was more to this story than a quick gag. I consulted with a psychologist friend to understand how people process loss and cope with grief. I created relatable characters, but I never abandoned the fun and sense of wonder from the original story. Since I had never directed anything more than short comedy sketches, I started looking for somebody to make this film. My friend Karen, who eventually became my assistant director, said the film was my vision and I should be the one to direct it. I took her advice. Making this film had its challenges. I did not go to film school and I’ve never operated a camera beyond an outdated iPhone. Because of that my only choice was to surround myself with people I trust, and then trust them. I was fortunate to cast actors who cared about the characters. They wanted to talk about the people they were playing and soon they knew these characters better than I did. This film was a wonderful collaboration with cast and crew. I’m just the guy who said, “let’s do this.” I love this film. So relax and enjoy, because It’s Time for Tea.