The Shift

Boston, Massachusetts | Film Short

Drama, Thriller

Tara Duffy

1 Campaigns | Massachusetts, United States

Green Light

This campaign raised $8,505 for pre-production. Follow the filmmaker to receive future updates on this project.

103 supporters | followers

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A meditation on power dynamics, agency, and violation. A young, savvy bartender fights to retain control while she is trapped alone with a troubled stranger during a shift at work. We are a female centric production exploring the state of mind prior to, during, and following a violating event.

About The Project

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

Mission Statement

Lead by a female writer, director, and producer. Surrounding a female protagonist. Visuals by a female director of photography. We are a predominantly female crew. Our community is both American and International, with artists from The Middle East, India, China, and all across The United States.

The Story


The Shift is a suspense-drama following 25 year old Mickey McVeigh over the course of one fateful shift at a Billiards Bar in rural Connecticut. Mickey's morning begins by facilitating aggressive, intense sex with her psuedo-partner and long-time friend, Adam. Mickey races over to work a closing shift at the bar. It is unusually quiet even for a sleepy, winter Sunday.


Mickey soon meets the intriguing yet questionable Tennessee Baker, a customer she has never seen before. As the day passes and the more interactions they have together, Mickey grows increasingly unnerved by him. A series of harrowing events occurring while they are alone in the bar cause Mickey to face her own sense of power, what it means to have agency, and what constitutes as violation.


An easily identifiable threat is far less disturbing than a danger masked in normalcy. Horror is what can be mistaken. Horror is what can be argued. Horror is ambiguity. The space between consenting female sexuality and violation contains infinite and complex uncertainties.


The Shift is a meditation on the instability of power. What anxieties arise when ownership is never definitive, constantly being re-defined, and always fluctuating? 



There is a glaring, massive gap between film and content surrounding subjective female stories. It comes as no surprise, unfortunately and rather painfully, when you see hoards of female friends and colleagues join in on social media campaigns to share their experiences to raise awareness on assault. It comes as no surprise, unfortunately and rather maddeningly, when you are reminded again why there even needs to be a campaign in the first place.


These stories are not reflected back in our media. Media has power. It causes us to empathize. It challenges us to reflect. It can even alter deeply rooted pre-conceptions. If we continue down the route of displaying stories of violation mostly just on CSI, we are impairing the possibility of confronting these difficult and layered issues.  



Of the top 100 grossing films in 2016 women represented:

4% of Directors 

3% of Cinematographers

29% of Protagonists


In Independent Cinema from 2007-2016 women directed: 

28% of Narrative Shorts. 

27% of Independent Features.


Aren't the independent statistics particularly depressing? I thought independent filmmaking was doing better than that. 



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Tara Grace Duffy

Writer, Director & Producer




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


Costs $2,500

There is nothing worse for a crew than being underfed. It is a big but essential expense!

Sound Mix

Costs $500

We need to get the sound mixed by an industry professional. Bad sound can ruin any film.

Production Design

Costs $800

All of our props ranging from a pick-up truck, 2 cars, liquor bottles, and break-away glass.


Costs $500

We need costumes for the principle actors and the background artists to fit the style of the film!

Housing and Travel

Costs $2,700

We are filming on location with artists based all over the Northeast so we need to house everyone!


Costs $500

We need the hard drives and post-production equipment to support the 4k footage!

3 Locations

Costs $1,500

We are shooting this entire film on location and need to pay for access!

Cash Pledge

Costs $0

About This Team

Writer, Director & Producer 

Tara Grace Duffy


Tara Grace Duffy is a Writer and Director. She studied in The Conservatory of Theatre Arts at SUNY Purchase College. Her Senior Thesis was a stage adaptation of Joyce Carol Oates’ tragic short story “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” The play won the Kay Capo Award for Excellence in Adaptation. It was endorsed and promoted by Joyce Carol Oates herself.  After directing a number of Shakespearean productions, a cross country road trip, and a quarter life crisis (all in succession), Tara decided to start creating in the medium of cinema. She quickly found a new home in filmmaking. She worked as an Editing Assistant for Firelight Films on the documentary Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Historically Black Colleges and Universities, which premiered at Sundance in 2017. She produced and directed a short documentary about sexual consent for MTV. She is currently an MFA Film and Media Art Candidate at Emerson College, where she is writing, directing, and producing short films.


Director of Photography

Sabine Bou-Jaoude 


Sabine is a filmmaker and painter from Lebanon. She received her B.A. in Radio, TV and film in 2011 from the Lebanese American University, Beirut. After graduation, she worked as a freelancer in Television, Music Videos and Film; all the while working on her own projects. In 2015, she moved to Boston, Massachusetts to pursue her Masters degree in Filmmaking. She’s currently a candidate in the MFA program at Emerson College, focusing on cinematography.


Executive Producer

Sloan Turner


Sloan Turner is a writer, director, and producer who examines the darker side of life in her films with emphasis on the complexities of death and fear. She holds a B.S. in Mass Communications from the University of Mary and is currently pursuing an MFA in Film and Media Art at Emerson College. After graduation she plans to move back to her home state of California and pursue a career in the horror genre.


Current Team