Private Project


A depressed man becomes mysteriously and inexplicably stuck to his toilet before he is able to commit suicide via toaster in the bathtub.

  • Boris Bilic
  • Boris Bilic
  • Boris Bilic
  • Jordan Iacovella
  • Noah Copfer
    Key Cast
  • Ben Fisher
    Key Cast
  • Jordan Wilson
    Key Cast
  • Sean Simmons
    Key Cast
  • Claire Fazzolari
    Key Cast
  • Aaron Maxey
    Director of Photography
  • Logan Austin
  • Gia McLaughlin
    Production Designer
  • Jacob Betts
    Production Designer
  • Bailey Petracek
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Dark Comedy, Drama, Mystery, Fantasy
  • Runtime:
    15 minutes 50 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    June 1, 2020
  • Production Budget:
    10,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Festigious Film Festival
    Los Angeles, CA
    United States
    June 30, 2020
    Best Dark Comedy/Best Actor in an Indie Film/Finalist for Best Original Story + Best Picture of the Month
  • Los Angeles Film Awards
    Los Angeles, CA
    United States
    June 28, 2020
    Best Dark Comedy/Best Actor in an Indie Film/Best Supporting Actress
  • Lift Off International Film Festival
    Los Angeles, CA
    United States
    September 15, 2020
    Online VOD Premiere
    3rd Place - Audience Vote for Best Film
  • Canada Shorts Film Festival
    Saint John, NB
    December 12, 2020
    Award of Excellence
Director Biography - Boris Bilic

Boris Bilic is a Canadian writer, director and actor based in Los Angeles and Vancouver. His debut short film, No Surprises, received numerous awards including Best Original Story, Best Actress in an Indie Film (Festigious Los Angeles) and Best Short Film (Life After Life Film Festival), as well as recognition in various Canadian news publications, such as The Richmond News, New Westminster Record, and Broadway World. As an actor, Boris can be seen in Afterthought, The Art of Drowning, and the post-apocalyptic drama Survival Box, directed by one of Canada's most prolific directors, William Scoular (The Death and Life of Nancy Eaton), and filmed at one of the fastest growing film-studios in Canada, Cinespace Studios (The Shape of Water, The Handmaid’s Tale). He is also one of the founding members of Alchemy Theatre Ensemble, an award-winning theatre troupe based out of Vancouver, British Columbia.

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Director Statement

Dumps is a difficult film to pitch.

Whenever you tell someone you’re making a dark comedy about suicide and depression, the story is sort of like 127 Hours meets Groundhog Day, and the title is a poop pun, you’re usually met with raised eyebrows and polite nods. In fact, I remember when I first completed the script and was asking friends and colleagues for feedback. At the time, I’d only ever directed one short film - it was one scene, one location, with two actors, that we managed to shoot in a single morning. I would receive the same feedback for Dumps from virtually everyone: it was a funny script, but it was unfilmable for a person of my skill level. Questions like “where will you shoot it,” “what’s your budget,” and “how the hell are you going to flood a bathroom?” were commonplace.

I’m very excited to say that we figured out a way to finally shoot and finish Dumps. It’s a very personal project for me, and came at a time when I was going through very similar things to the main character, Andy. While in the film, Andy is stuck to his toilet, I was feeling “stuck” in life and also had a lot of trouble reaching out to the right people.

I wanted to tell a story that was cathartic for me, but make sure there was something there that a general audience could connect with and not just feel like the writer was getting something off his chest. I chose to tell this story then as an allegory, where the toilet became a stand-in for depression itself, feeling stuck and being embarrassed about it - caught with one's pants down, if you will. And the bathtub became a representation of what it feels like to have anxiety - always on, and just barely out of reach.

When it came to actually shooting the film, we decided to do the flooding entirely practically. We achieved this effect by building the set small enough so that it could fit in a build-it-yourself outdoor pool. We then put the whole set inside of it, and let the pool fill with water while we broke for lunch. It was definitely a challenge and as an amateur director I can definitely see why people hate working with water. Despite the many variables involved in the shoot, we thankfully had all our bases covered and our insurance agent was very happy in the end.

And of course, there is the question of the film’s ending - was he really stuck the whole time? Was it all just a cry for help? Why is everyone so flippant with their attitudes towards death and suffering? Does the entire film take place in Andy's head? Is he dead and is the bathroom Purgatory? Some of those questions I know the answer to. Some I don’t. But I hope that by thinking about these questions, I will have managed to illuminate for some not exactly what depression is like in reality, but more what it feels like for those who experience it.

It’s scary. It’s embarrassing. And a lot of the times, you just need to laugh about it.

I hope you enjoyed Dumps.

Boris Bilic