‘Experimental Activity’ Pretends It’s Something It’s Not

By  · Published on November 4th, 2009

It feels downright mean-spirited to gang up on an indie production just trying to get eyeballs on its hard work, but if there was ever a time to call shenanigans it’s right now.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, independent horror flick Walking Distance (which features Katie Featherston from Paranormal Activity) has changed its title to Experimental Activity.


I suppose a blatant grab for any sort of connection to a serious winner is probably not a terrible strategy for getting recognition (it’s worked in making some news after all), but there’s also the negative aspects of renaming:

  1. That’s a stupid name.
  2. Now it sounds like an Asylum release trying to cash in on a big title.
  3. Wait, it’s not an Asylum title, is it?

The president of Showcase Entertainment, the company that purchased the film rights, had this money quote:

Clearly having the fastest-rising star in the business is a feather in the cap, but we feel the film stands on its own as a cool psychological thriller,” said David Jackson.

So it stands on its own, but it needs to tether itself to a proven winner. Gotcha.

The official synopsis:

A idyllic, small, self-sufficient community. On the surface, it seems like the perfect neighborhood. Everything you could possibly need is within walking distance. But… the pastoral exterior conceals a dark past and an even darker secret. As a group of individuals – each with their own ties and agendas with the town and each other – converges on the enclave, strange things begin to happen. Very strange things. Strange enough to test – and then break – the very fabric of reality itself.

Maybe I’m being too harsh here, but it seems like a tacky move (which will, admittedly, probably work). The good news is they can totally avoid being sued by The Twilight Zone, but the bad news is they have to scrap these posters:

What do you think? What flavor are your nightmares?

Thanks for the poster, Shockya.

Movie stuff at VanityFair, Thrillist, IndieWire, Film School Rejects, and The Broken Projector [email protected] | Writing short stories at Adventitious.