Private Project

Princeton's in the Mix

When the wealthy mother of a high schooler discovers that her son can get extra time on the SAT if he gets injured, things spiral out of control.

  • Jonathan DiMaio
    Writer and Director
    Unconformity, Without the Ancestors
  • Antonio Alonzo Ayala
    Produced by
    I Wrote This for You
  • Heather Brawley
    Produced by
    Big Kill, Mark II, Loving Lenna
  • Nagi Chami
    Executive Producer
  • Jennifer Yeo
    Co-Executive Producer
  • Matt Stoner
    I Wrote This for You. Fragrant Night, Neighborhood Watch
  • David Zax
    Payment in Kind
  • Heather Burns
    Key Cast
    Miss Congeniality, Manchester by the Sea, You've Got Mail, Two Weeks Notice
  • Charlie Besso
    Key Cast
    The Calling, Fallout
  • Syra McCarthy
    Key Cast
    The Dropout, The Alternate
  • Nate Duncan
    Key Cast
    General Hospital, Sorry for Your Loss
  • Atim Udoffia
    Key Cast
    Where Sleeping Dogs Lie, Fairyland
  • Mya Travis
    Key Cast
  • Mikee Loria
    Key Cast
    Cool Cat Saves the Kids - the Director's Cut
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Horror, Satire
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography

Jonathan DiMaio is a filmmaker and co-founder of the education and human rights non-profit, Yspaniola. His 2014 short film, Without the Ancestors, played at numerous festivals in the U.S. and Europe, and his music videos for Dominican rappers Chokola y Gimby helped launch the duo to national prominence in the Dominican Republic. Jonathan’s first feature, Unconformity, premiered at Heartland International Film Festival and is currently available to stream on multiple platforms.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

Princeton’s in the Mix is my story about what happens when one status-obsessed parent finds a shortcut, a cheat on the SAT that is resisted by her principled and earnest piano-obsessed son.

Inspired by my experience as an academic and college prep tutor for privileged families in the Northeast, I wanted to make a film for audiences that is a satirical, fun, and disturbing parable about what happens when wealthy parents’ obsession with college admissions makes them lose sight of their children's actual well-being. Princeton’s in the Mix takes the time-honored traditions of elitism, academic cheating, and parental pressure and turns the results physical and horrifying, and I hope viewers will see the movie as an indictment of the warping of our society’s higher education admissions process.

The horror is intensified by presenting the story’s satire, comedy, and splashes of camp with a controlled and gliding camera, opulent lighting, and the hauntingly beautiful Franz Liszt étude La Campanella, which is quickened, warped, and chopped up when appropriate. The performance of Heather Burns, known primarily for comic roles, strengthens the darkly comedic elements of the movie.

I’m pleased to share what I think is a very engaging and thought-provoking film about insecure parents adrift in excess and ego who no longer see — or have never seen — education as an end in itself.

I hope you enjoy watching.

Jonathan DiMaio, Director, Princeton's in the Mix