A Stop Along the Way Short

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania | Film Short

Horror, LGBTQ

Emily Townsend

1 Campaigns | Pennsylvania, United States

Green Light

This campaign raised $7,125 for production. Follow the filmmaker to receive future updates on this project.

84 supporters | followers

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With so many injustices done to women and queer communities, this film highlights the impact religious extremism has had for centuries.

About The Project

  • The Story
  • Wishlist
  • Updates
  • The Team
  • Community

Mission Statement

With so many injustices done to women and queer communities, this film highlights the impact religious extremism has had for centuries.

The Story

The story revolves around a group of friends that make a stop at a dive bar in the middle of nowhere while traveling on a road trip. It's there that they meet Jude, a reserved young woman who is being hunted for her apostasy by mysterious red figures.

Mary, the protagonist of the film, is drawn to a mysterious woman named Jude, who wanders into the bar chain-smoking and sporting tinted sunglasses. As the night goes on, the friends leave the table one by one and it is revealed that Jude is being hunted by a cult whose members drape themselves in red fabric. These formless figures kill each character one by one, all while Mary and Jude become closer. In the end, Jude's intense ties to the past overcome her. She murders Mary before the cult retreats into the woods, evading justice and responsibility. 

This film accentuates the impact that sexuality, religious extremism, and patriarchy have had on women and LGBTQ+ communities. The cult members represent evil forces of hate and oppression that recur over and over again throughout history, and when Jude murders Mary, she murders the last ounce of hope in her heart for sisterhood and boundless love. 

Emily P. Townsend is making her directorial debut as a writer and director of A Stop Along the Way. As two lovers of film, Emily met Cosmo Orlando Skarzenski at the tender age of 17. Cosmo went on to become a producer for Netflix and Vice and currently runs a successful music video business while Emily focused her creativity through conceptual photography. It was through Cosmo that Emily met Aaron Fitzpatrick, a talented cinematographer with a passion for horror and filming. A Stop Along the Way was conceived over a year ago as the pandemic wreaked havoc around the world and our dreams stirred beneath the surface. Everyone on the crew has a beautiful vision and an intense love for filmmaking. We believe the world needs art now more than ever.

Horror is one of the most malleable and profound genres of film because it confronts what we fear the most. Movies can be campy and gory like Peter Jackson's "Dead Alive," or subtle and terrifying like "The Blair Witch Project." The deaths in this film will be representations of renaissance paintings, such as Caravaggio's 'Judith beheading Holofernes.' Similar references were used in "The Lighthouse," and it works when tying our modern-day struggles to similar circumstances throughout history. Our story dips into these universes to mold a unique and deeply dark experience. 

Hi there! My name is Emily and I am the writer/director of "A Stop Along the Way." I am a filmmaker and photographer with a niche in the concept of horror and this short will be my real-deal production debut! My fascination with horror began when I was a young child and my father told me ghost stories before bed. I've always been inspired by classic horror tropes like ghosts and skeletons. The purpose of this film is to extend my experience as a woman on the asexuality spectrum immersed in the queer community, and the impact extreme religious rhetoric has had on my life and peers. The story itself is inspired by some personal life experiences but also by the hateful forces fed by religious extremism from medieval times to the trump era. Being a first-time filmmaker is scary... almost as scary as being stalked by a cult... but there are so many people who believe this project is worth pursuing. We hope you will join us!

See More of Emily's Portfolio

REGARDING COVID-19: It is a daunting time for the world, yet we have seen the great importance of art and creativity. During the pandemic, it is imperative to continue storytelling and connecting. We are taking appropriate precautions regarding the pandemic and the delta variant. Everyone involved is required to be vaccinated as well prioritizing funding for personal protective equipment. The safety of our crew and friends is at the top of the list! 

A pledge to this project will more than just help our dreams come true, it will elevate the necessity of queer horror and confront issues such as the patriarchy, sexuality, and religious extremism. We want to fight against the plague of misinformation on LGBTQ+ culture and send the important message that we are here, we are free, and we will not stand for it any longer. As a queer filmmaker and student of psychology/sociology, I think it's imperative to give voices to those that need it the most.


The amount of resources and help it takes to create a film is vast, more than you would think! We are asking for the bare bones to make this film a reality. We want our crew to be accommodated and fed, SFX materials, camera equipment, and props. 

Filming will take place in early October and we hope to submit festivals by the end of the year or early 2022.



Can I count on you to pledge any amount for this project? We've dreamed up immersive incentives so you can feel as much a part of the film as you really are! Funding is the necessary evil that will make this project come to life! Can you commit to any of the tiers to the right? From movie posters to social media shoutouts to JOINING THE CULT! 


This is primarily for folks that live in the Philadelphia area; There are two roles we need to be filled for general help on shoot days!
A. ALL HANDS ON DECK: You'd essentially just sit around in case we need someone to run out for something or do general duties, nothing crazy or overqualified! Bring a book and chill, you'd be gifting us peace of mind! 
B. NOW WE'RE COOKIN': We would buy the ingredients if you can cook at home and transport food to the shoot OR we can pick it up from you! Any little bit can help! 

3. POST!!

Below is an Instagram post that is ready TO GO, you just need to right-click and save the image below! I've written a little caption to go along with it as well. This will help build awareness around the film, we need an expansive audience for the success of this movie! 

Copy & Paste: 

Someone I love is making a horror film and you can help! This horror film portrays authentic LGBTQ+ characters. The evil force hunting them is a shroud for the patriarchy and the harm religious fanaticism has done to women in queer communities. Visit @asatw_film and check out the spooky content and find out how YOU can get involved in making this film come to life. 

Right Click & Save: 



An excerpt from "A Stop Along the Way"

BTS from November's promotional shoot



We will be printing out invitations with a special QR code on the back, enticing those who find them to pursue the link. It leads them to a special video of M. Moloch which can only be found through the QR code and will not be released to the public, only to those that find them on the street (we will be scattering the invites throughout specific cities in the U.S. and all over Philadelphia) or to those who choose to pledge money for our "cult member packet" incentive! 


Use the WishList to Pledge cash and Loan items - or - Make a pledge by selecting an Incentive directly.

Cash Pledge

Costs $0

Camera Equipment

Costs $2,000

This would cover camera rental for stunning visuals!

Cinema Lenses

Costs $700

We need lenses that will accommodate desired shots!

Audio Rentals

Costs $2,500

Location sound is tough! We need to rent decent equipment to capture the magic!


Costs $2,000

We want the best makeup and FX possible for a realistic feel!


Costs $1,500

Feed the crew and talent!

About This Team


Director: Emily P Townsend
Director of Photography: Aaron Fitzpatrick
Producer: Cosmo Orlando/MFAC INC.
Casting: April Rivera
MUA: Corrie Murray

Mary: Frankie Anderson
Jude: Meredith Sullivan
Jess: TBA
Abe: TBA
Matt: TBA
Moloch: TBA

Current Team