Spencer teen has her short film produced in hometown

A Spencer teen won a statewide high school screenplay writing competition and is now having her own short film produced. (WTHR Photo/Rich Nye)

SPENCER, Ind. (WTHR) - In her small hometown of Spencer, Indiana, teenager Marjorie Abrell is watching her short film script become a full production.

"I feel like I'm going to wake up and it's going to be gone,” Abrell said Monday, sitting next to her director, producer and actors on the town square. “I never thought that this could happen."

Abrell won Project Pigasus, a statewide high school screenplay writing competition. The prize is watching professionals produce your short film. Monday was the final day of shooting for Abrell’s short film “Hide & Seek”.

Abrell, a sophomore at Owen Valley High School, wore a crew headset and watched the romance story she wrote come to life on camera.

Monday morning's scenes were shot inside the Playhouse vintage toy store on the south side of the Spencer town square.

The story? "A teenager who works at this shop and they have the chance to ask a girl to the movies.”

Indiana-based Pigasus Pictures annually selects a screenplay written by a Hoosier high schooler to produce into a short film. Marjorie won this year's Project Pigasus.

"Scary and exciting, because it's my work and I guess I'm kind of worried that people won't like it,” said Abrell. “I guess that's the main thing. But it's also exciting. Scary and exciting."

"She couldn't have made it any easier in the sense that we're in Spencer,” said director Rachel Murphy, an Indianapolis filmmaker making her directing debut. “We're on the square and we get to showcase all this loveliness, because we're literally at five different locations."

Skye Steury, a 13-year-old from Goshen, Indiana, plays his first feature role.

"I'm very excited,” said Steury. “I can't grasp the idea that I'm going to be on TV."

Abrell is already thinking movies might be a career, especially if "Hide & Seek" finds favor with a broader audience.

"It's really nice to have a chance with someone who you think you're not going to have that shot with,” said Abrell. “So just that hope that you can do that. I want people to relate to it and have that maybe little spark of it."

Post-production takes a couple of months and no release date has been set yet. “Hide & Seek” will premiere here in downtown Spencer at the historic Tivoli Theatre.

Abrell’s screenplay was selected from over 30 entries to Project Pigasus.

The short film will have in-state showings before being sold online with proceeds benefiting young artist projects. "Hide & Seek" could be entered in nationwide film festivals as well.

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