Experiencing Interruptions?


In the North, the last states take their first steps toward abolishing chattel slavery; though it will be generations before they will free the last of their slaves.

For Basammer, an enslaved man on Mr. Jared Corey's Virginia plantation, that sounds close enough to freedom; and it's but a few days' march away, just across the Mason-Dixon line. He escapes with his secret wife Marfay, leaving the vainglorious Mr. Corey with none to punish (or profit from) but those that remain.

The journey of Basammer and Marfay tests their love, pitting it against their morality as they battle both the laws of nature and the laws of man.

  • Daniel H. Jacobson
    Down the River
  • Ross Denyer
    Tell No Tales
  • Ray Hungria
    Jenni, The Game, Al Fin y Al Cabo
  • Raz Birger
  • Daniel H. Jacobson
    Down the River
  • Daniel H. Jacobson
    Down the River
  • Raz Birger
    Director of Photography
    Down the River, Adane and Yaleo, Bordo
  • Nathaniel J. Ryan
    Key Cast
    Random Acts of Flyness, The Blacklist, Blue Bloods, Collar Confessions
  • Michelle Kariuki
    Key Cast
    (Film Debut)
  • Ross Denyer
    Key Cast
    "Mr. Jared Corey"
    Tell No Tales, Meet You Halfway, The Verge
  • Frank Sean Johnson
    Key Cast
    The Drummer, Madam Secretary
  • Laurence James Sargent
    Key Cast
    "The Bounty Hunter"
    The Suicide Squad (stunts), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (stunts)
  • Brian Rock
    Key Cast
    "The Deer Hunter"
    Severance, FBI, Law and Order: SVU, Mare of Easttown, Dispatches from Elsewhere
  • Marian Edmiston
    Key Cast
    "Mrs. Tilly"
    Catching Up, One Last Glance, Monsters Inside Me, Evil Lies Here
  • Pierce Constanti
    Turning Back the Tide, Lone Star Deception
  • Pano Fountas
    Turning Back the Tide, Finding Light
  • Fadi Ghassan Khoury
    Turning Back the Tide, Tainted Signal
  • George Hutson Warren
    Dogcatcher, Daddy's Night
  • Yuval Bar-on
    Sound Design and Mix
    Valley of Tears, King Bibi, The Golem, Plan A, Jeruzalem, Hatufim (Prisoners of War), The Voice (Israel), The Amazing Race (Israel), The Office (Israel), Death on the Nile (ADR Mixer), Foxtrot (ADR Mixer)
  • C. Ryan Stemple
    Empire, Honest Thief, American Masters: Marian Anderson, Triumph, The Chi, Crisis
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Historical Drama, Period Piece, Tragedy, Drama
  • Runtime:
    29 minutes 59 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    October 10, 2022
  • Production Budget:
    35,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Big Apple Film Festival
    New York, NY
    United States
    May 24, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Micheaux Film Festival
    Los Angeles, CA
    United States
    July 13, 2023
    Official Selection
  • First Glance Philadelphia Film Festival
    Philadelphia, PA
    United States
    October 8, 2023
    Philadelphia Premiere
  • Orlando Film Festival
    Orlando, FL
    United States
    October 28, 2023
    Florida Premiere
  • Alexandria Film Festival
    Alexandria, VA
    United States
    November 11, 2023
    DC/Virginia Premiere
Director Biography - Daniel H. Jacobson

Daniel H. Jacobson is an American-Israeli filmmaker whose 2019 Israeli short film, the Hebrew-language thriller "Down the River" won several awards for its cast and crew, including "Best Screenplay" and "Best Actress" for Heli Amaresh Sanka at the New York Independent Film Festival.

In August 2020, Dan was one of four featured panelists at the Bucharest International Film Festival's special event "Socially United in Cinema", where “Down the River” screened to wide acclaim.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

At its core, "1805" is a love story; a tragic romance. We sought to portray a story of two people trying to find hope in a world where none exists.

It's a film inspired by the thousands of other stories like it that happened and were lost to history, never recorded, with none left to remember them or retell them. It is a story about finding a way to love, about taking agency in a world that won't let you.

While the pacing at times may seem a bit languid, we really wanted to give these characters a few moments of joy that they could steal amidst the tragedy of their existence, while also not shying away from the grave expenses that others paid for them to gain these experiences.

In crafting this story, I focused a lot on stories from the Holocaust and the Soviet occupation of Eastern Europe, particularly those in which one spouse was coerced into informing on or betraying their significant other. I wanted to focus on the sick incentives that force people to turn on their loved ones and their communities, and the confusion and the lack of trust that that creates between people who should otherwise be fighting against the same antagonistic force.

So why set the film in America, why engage in the subject of slavery? Reading the works of Fredrick Douglass, he reiterates that the most terrifying aspect and perhaps the greatest lasting legacy of slavery was the separation of families, something that, though differing in form, was still official U.S. policy when this movie was shot. As such, we chose to create a period piece that showed the mundane day-to-day evils of a system whose roots still remain firmly beneath our feet. And further, we wanted to show the doubt that these characters have to deal with, the lack of resolution, and the lack of sympathy they receive for their suffering. They didn't have the privilege to grieve.

So while many films depict a hero rising to overcome a system, for this project we attempted to depict a system designed to prevent a hero's rise altogether; a system wherein even the most noble sacrifice is rendered moot.