SLOW BURN

SLOW BURN is a meditation on love and memories that linger beyond time and space.

SLOW BURN is a narrative short film that takes an intimate look into the lives of two ex-lovers, Zara Ellis and Ade Michele. Though magical together, with all of the ingredients of forever, Zara and Ade could not make a final commitment to each other.

As they go about the mundane of their lives, sudden but subtle encounters with their past trigger memories of their love affair. Unaware but in sync, the echo of memory reverberates in the spaces these lovers traverse and it demands their attention, even if for a moment.

  • Stephanie L. Malson
    Director
    We Are Free Because of Harriet Tubman (DP)
  • Stephanie L. Malson
    Writer
  • Tracey Lewis-Giggetts
    Producer
  • Sannii Crespina-Flores
    Producer
  • Ruth Oliver
    Key Cast
    "Zara"
  • Beaux Emmerson
    Key Cast
    "Ade"
  • Project Type:
    Short
  • Genres:
    Romance
  • Runtime:
    10 minutes 52 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    August 31, 2022
  • Production Budget:
    10,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Aspect Ratio:
    16:9
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    Yes
  • Student Project:
    No
  • cineSpeak presents On Love and Joy
    Philadelphia
    United States
    September 24, 2021
  • San Francisco Black Film Festival
    San Francisco
    United States
    July 2, 2022
    West Coast
    Official Selection
  • Baltimore International Black Film Festival
    Baltimore
    United States
    October 9, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Gary International Black Film Festival
    Gary
    United States
    October 9, 2022
    Directors Award for Narrative Story
  • Gary International Black Film Festival
    Gary
    United States
    October 9, 2022
    Directors Award for Narrative Story
Director Biography - Stephanie L. Malson

Stephanie Malson is a multi-hyphenate filmmaker who is drawn to telling ancestral stories. SLOW BURN is her first short film. She is a Co-Producer on the upcoming feature documentary, ULRICK, which chronicles the life of Haitian master painter Ulrick Jean-Pierre. She has also directed and produced several narrative short films. Her cinematography is featured in the short experimental film We Are Free Because of Harriet Tubman, which was an official BlackStar Film Festival selection. Among many work-for-hire projects, she has produced work for Intercultural Journeys, The Debbie Allen Dance Academy, ARRAY, and Metabook. She also teaches Script Writing part-time at Temple University. Stephanie holds an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Rosemont College.

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Director Statement

Slow Burn is a visual meditation on two former lovers remembering love.

This work was born out of a desire to capture the quiet yet visceral feeling of memories and connection. Sometimes they feel like an echo. Other times, a haunting presence lingering in places touched. I am fascinated with studying the type of relationships I call “the familiar”. Where two people know each other in a deeply intimate way. This type of relationship is one that is forever linked together. This film is an ode to that type of romantic love that had the potential for forever but just couldn’t make it work.

Stylistically, I very much wanted this film to feel like the slow cool sound of Miles Davis’ horn in ‘Blue and Green’. I wanted every frame to be a study of their unfolding together.

It should be noted that this film was made just after the world went through a global lock down. It was made during a time when we were surrounded, it seemed, by an overwhelming amount of grief. I longed to see Black people in love, in joy, connected through touch and desire.

I am also proud to say that this film was made by the hands of a small cadre of talented women creatives who are choosing to forge their own bold new path as storytellers. This is how SLOW BURN became.

“I want you to remember what love felt like.” - Stephanie Malson

SLOW BURN is my first short film.