Private Project


Otis, a small and timid twelve-year-old, is detasseling corn (a generations-old summer job for Midwestern children) on the far end of a row of older boys in an imposing, jungle-like cornfield​​. He comforts himself by pretending to fly a makeshift corn rocket, which is stolen by the older boys. Friendless and alone, Otis must continue to work in silence.

As the group enters a clearing in the field, Alejandra, a thirteen-year-old girl, catches up and joins their group on the opposite end of Otis. When the other boys try to intimidate her for being late, she makes them look like fools by pointing out that one of the boys missed his tassels and must go back. She and Otis share a smile before she continues into her row. Intrigued and wowed, Otis decides he’s going to work his way down to her no matter the cost.

The cost, Otis discovers, is everything in his lunchbox, being bullied and even giving up his treasured compass watch. He sacrifices all that he possesses, but he makes it to Alejandra. The two start up a conversation and Otis’s combination of curiosity and naivitae start to break down her defences. She learns that Otis dreams of adventure and getting out of this small town. He, in turn, learns that Alejandra wears two pendants that are dear to her, one of which bears the image of ​​San Cristóbal, the patron saint of travelers.

Without warning, a crop duster approaches from around the bend, scaring the older boys. Otis thinks quickly and protects he and Alejandra under his poncho, saving them from being sprayed with chemicals. The two share a moment under the poncho, then emerge unharmed. When the group reaches the end of their row, they find the supervisor and the other groups waiting for them impatiently. Alejandra is assigned a new group, but before she leaves, she gives Otis her ​​San Cristóbal pendant, begging the question: will the two ever meet again?

Alone once again, Otis approaches the wall of corn. But he is no longer the timid kid he once was. He has stood up to what he feared, sacrificed for what he desired and shared a moment with a special girl. With his pendant around his neck, Otis takes a step forward and disappears into the jungle of corn.

  • Nate Sully
  • Victor Velle
    8 Billion Angels
  • Nate Sully
  • Nate Sully
  • Katya Alexander
  • Dalyna Partida
    Key Cast
  • CJ Smith
    Key Cast
  • Jaxson Mueller
    Key Cast
  • Grant Kiefer
    Key Cast
  • Finlay Sully
    Key Cast
  • Henry Sommer
    Key Cast
  • Nate Sully
    Key Cast
  • Jake L Mitchell
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    12 minutes 39 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    September 8, 2021
  • Production Budget:
    14,300 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital, ARRI
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Nate Sully, Victor Velle

Nate Sully is a first-time director, writer, producer, and actor. He studied drama at T. Schreiber Studios in NYC and improv and sketch at The Pack Theater in LA. His stories are often inspired by his childhood in the Midwest and his time as rafting guide in New Zealand and a cattle rancher in Outback Australia.

Victor Velle is the director of "8 Billion Angels", a $1M documentary about the overpopulation of Earth, recently purchased by Abramorama, released in theaters nationwide, and streaming on Amazon and iTunes. He studied Visual Media Arts at Emerson College and founded his own production company, CQ Studios.

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Director Statement

I have vivid memories of detasseling corn in Nebraska, which was my first "real" job meaning my folks weren't paying me to do odd work around the house. It's also something my parents, cousins and even grandparents did while growing up in Nebraska.

Influenced by my favorite director, Taika Waititi--whom I became acquainted with while living in New Zealand--as well as "Indiana Jones", I decided to write a script about this part of my childhood.

Partly fiction and partly autobiographic, I wanted to make a film about the difficulties of being an outcast kid, the adventurous thoughts of leaving home, and the nostalgia of first love.

Thank you for watching and for your consideration.

Nate Sully