Experiencing Interruptions?


A girl journeys through symbolic hallucinations that attempt to communicate her death as she hosts a brain-eating parasite.

  • Sarah McDaniel
  • Courtney Carter
  • Courtney Carter
  • Sarah McDaniel
  • Courtney Carter
  • Sarah McDaniel
    Key Cast
  • Aaron Behr
    Key Cast
    "Man in Red"
    Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
  • Garrett Wareing
    Key Cast
    "Gray Jumpsuit"
  • Marco Vicini
    Executive Producer
    Boarding School
  • Steve Forner
    The Grudge
  • Heath Gresham
    Director of Photography
  • Danna Grace Windsor
    2D Animation & Design
  • Juan Zavala
    CG Supervisor
  • Project Type:
    Animation, Experimental, Short
  • Genres:
    Fantasy, Sci-fi
  • Runtime:
    11 minutes 16 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    October 1, 2019
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    Alexa RAW
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Sarah McDaniel, Courtney Carter

Septaria was co-directed by Sarah McDaniel and Courtney Carter.

Sarah McDaniel is an internet sensation with over 1.5 million followers. She's known internationally for being the first non-nude model to appear on the cover of Playboy. Her acting credits include the French web series Super High and the feature film Perfect. She's now in the process of producing and directing several short form animations.

Courtney Carter is an up-and-coming intuitive storytelling visionary. Unable to find a box to fit in, her early career involved facilitating and documenting unique art installations in remote places. This transitioned into sourcing locations for various television series like Super High and Grey's Anatomy. She is now a full time writer with a surreal animated series in pre-production and a 2D animated short film release in 2021.

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Director Statement

Live action, 2D and 3D animation unite to create an immersive dreamlike experience across multiple dimensions. Symbols and rapid cuts stimulate the subconscious mind—the intent is for the viewer to disengage from conscious thought and experience an intuitive world that speaks through visuals.

Septaria, an anagram for parasite, contains many parallels to the current pandemic. Our current world at large and the film's protagonist are both initiated into the shock and impact of an infection beyond their control, a period of internal chaos, an activated search for greater purpose and the disintegration of old ways of being. It speaks to lost generations with a voice of surreal foretelling.

Wildfires in California, Oregon and Washington have since devastated each location featured in the film. Filming took place in Olympic and Mt. Rainier National Parks, Hoh National Rainforest, Kalaloch Beach, and Umpqua, Mount Hood and Shasta—Trinity National Forests.

Filmmaking was extreme, adventurous and done guerilla style by a team of 4. Over 3,300 miles were covered by RV in two weeks. Most scenes required hiking more than a mile with all gear and the Alexa Arri. For the night scene, a broom pole / tennis ball /duct tape suit provided camera tracking for the cyclops, while a portable bug fogger created the atmospheric effect. The lead, Sarah, did a one-shot fall into glacial water, jammed her hands and feet into the snow for multiple takes, and withstood 108-degree temperatures in a hot spring.