Earthworm

When twenty-year-old Claire finds out she’s pregnant, she knows she wants to have an abortion. With confidence in her choice, support from her family, and good healthcare, it should be straightforward. But the night before the appointment, skin-crawling hallucinations begin to shake her resolve. At the gynecologist's office, what should be a routine medical experience becomes a waking nightmare with lasting repercussions.

  • Grace Gregory
    Director
    Over/Under (Feature), Your Honor Season 2, Star Trek Picard Seasons 1-3, Good Girls Season 3
  • Charlotte Foley
    Writer
  • Joe Metcalf
    Producer
  • Charlotte Foley
    Key Cast
    "Claire O'Leary"
    In the Motherhood
  • Rodney To
    Key Cast
    "Dr. Blythe"
    Easter Sunday, Parks and Recreation, Barry, Good Girls,
  • Michelle White
    Key Cast
    "Mom"
  • Rob Nagle
    Key Cast
    "Dad"
    Dynasty, Dawson's Creek
  • Elizabeth Frances
    Key Cast
    "Nurse Rita"
    Mayans, Son
  • Riley Shen
    Cinematographer
    Miss Boundless, Mortis, Too Many Buddhas, Treeline Lake
  • Henry Hall
    Composer
  • Project Type:
    Short
  • Genres:
    Thriller, Body Horror, Psychological Thriller, Dark comedy
  • Runtime:
    13 minutes 36 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 20, 2022
  • Production Budget:
    25,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Aspect Ratio:
    4:3
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    Yes
  • Student Project:
    No
Director Biography - Grace Gregory

Grace is a trained actor and producer from Los Angeles. She has worked for TV Producer Dylan Massin on Your Honor, Star Trek Picard, and Good Girls. She produced the indie feature Over/Under, which was Executive Produced by Cooper Raiff and screened in competition at the San Francisco, Provincetown, and Deauville Film Festivals. Earthworm is her directorial debut.

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Director Statement

In the fall of 2020, I had a medication abortion. The experience was more painful and upsetting than I could have ever anticipated, and it completely wiped me out. But more intense than the pain was how creepy and bizarre the whole thing was. I felt powerless to the force of my own body — like my body was no longer mine.

A few months later, my friend Charlotte sent me a script she had written about her own abortion, which had turned into a traumatic surprise procedure when her gynecologist discovered she had already started miscarrying before she came in. Her script resonated with me vividly: the protagonist's hallucinations of worms taking over her body captured the vulnerability that I felt, both in carrying a pregnancy I didn’t want, and during the painful and surreal process of expelling it.

Like Charlotte and myself, our protagonist Claire is privileged in critical ways: she lives in a place where she can legally and easily access abortion care, she is medically insured and financially comfortable, she is loved and supported by her family. But even the best of circumstances can’t protect someone from this invasive nightmare of an experience. Now that abortion has lost its constitutional protection, and abortion clinics in many states across the country have already closed their doors, women will be forced into even more precarious and fraught situations than Claire finds herself in, with more barriers to overcome.