Private Project

Three Legged Dog

Logline: California, surfer-girl Abby (SWF) seeks open-minded partner to amputate her left arm.
Serious inquiries only.

Award-winning short film, 'Three-Legged Dog' is a charming, light-hearted drama that explores the pathos and isolation of a woman with a very rare, but very real condition: Body Identity Integrity Disorder (BIID)

Abby is ‘Transabled.’ She struggles with (BIID), an obsessive desire to remove her left arm so that she may live comfortably in her own body. Unlike a transgender person who can undergo reassignment surgery, BIID sufferers have no medical recourse to seek amputation. U.S laws and the Hippocratic oath forbid doctors from removing a healthy limb. The lack of a medical alternative often forces people with BIID to turn to dangerous and illegal means to achieve the desired amputation.

Abby struggles with the unbearable psychological discomfort of living in the wrong body. Inspired by her hero, Bethany Hamilton, the thirteen-year-old “Soul Surfer” who achieved fame when she lost her arm in a shark attack, but went on to become a champion surfer, Abby tries to amputate her arm by luring a shark to her bleeding arm while surfing.

Despite many attempts, no shark ever shows up. Disappointed, she returns home to her long-suffering boyfriend. Realizing what she has tried to do yet again, they fight. Refusing to be party to her obsession any longer, he leaves saying that he'll only come back if she gets some real help.

More despondent than ever, a new hope is awakened in Abby when she responds to a personal advertisement seeking a loving home for a three-legged special needs dog.

  • Bonnie Kathleen Ryan (Discepolo)
    Rebel Without A Crew the Series, GraceLand, Real.Live.Girl
  • Trevor Munson
    Moonlight, Lone Star State of Mind
  • Bonnie-Kathleen Ryan
    Key Cast
  • Chris Starr
    Key Cast
    Domino One
  • Chris Frontiero
    Key Cast
    "Joe the Vet"
  • Hammie Winkler
    Key Cast
    "Annie the Dog"
  • Bonnie Discepolo
    Grandma's House, Three Legged Dog, Daisy
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
  • Runtime:
    6 minutes 54 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 18, 2018
  • Production Budget:
    475 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Shooting Format:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • The Atlanta Underground Film Festival
    United States
    August 18, 2017
    Best Dark Comedy Short
  • Indie Grits Film Festival
    Columbia, South Carolina
    United States
    April 12, 2018
  • El Rey Network

    May 23, 2018
Director Biography - Bonnie Kathleen Ryan (Discepolo)

Bonnie Discepolo is a Los Angeles based narrative filmmaker and cross sectional artist. They began telling stories in childhood as a way to rewrite and add hope to the harsh reality of abuse, and poverty that she was living back then. Now, as an adult
and filmmaker, Discepolo directs films about outsiders, women and young people who are heroes, rather than victims. Discepolo’s characters are grounded and emotionally truthful, but they exist in heightened, colorful, and hopeful worlds where they punctuate
serious situations with humor and or absurdity. Because we could all use a little laughter right now.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

Who has agency over a woman's body? This question is at the heart of Three-Legged Dog. The media, patriarchy, anyone who commands that a woman would be prettier if she smiled, feels compelled to tell a woman how to look and feel comfortable in their own body.

Three Legged Dog follows a woman who believes that she would be happier living her life as an amputee. She doesn't get to make that choice, Three Legged Dog follows the journey of searching for a way to make an unconventional choice for oneself.

This is my first film and is what Robert Rodriguez saw when he invited me to participate in Rebel Without A Crew The Series. I think it's of a piece with my subsequent films that follow people who use their bodies to communicate in untraditional ways.