Infinite Abyss Options 'The Gravedigger' for Its First Feature Film
Updated: Jul 13, 2019
Infinite Abyss is embarking on an adventure that no other theater company has before by producing the theatrical version of Joseph Zettelmaier's The Gravedigger on their Foundry stage in Fort Lauderdale, and then immediately turning that play into a feature film using the same cast and crew.
While the logistics of accomplishing such a feat are dizzying, Infinite Abyss has selected a stellar cast and creative team that has the talent and experience to pull it off. "Though Abyss has largely been a company that produces live theater, we have also specialized in producing high-quality short films that have been featured and incorporated into our shows for years. With all of the filmmakers we have on our creative team, making a feature film was a natural progression for us," says Erynn Dalton, Infinite Abyss' founder and artistic director.
Infinite Abyss optioned the film rights for The Gravedigger in late 2018 from Joseph Zettelmaier, a Michigan-based playwright. "I read Joseph's script for The Gravedigger, and not only knew immediately that I wanted to produce it as a play, but because the story was both so intimate and cinematic, I knew it had to become a movie, too. I'm so grateful that Joseph trusts our vision and has faith that we can do his story justice, both on stage and on screen," says Dalton, who will be directing both the stage and film productions.
Zettelmaier is a powerhouse writer who is a four-time nominee for the Steinberg/American Theatre Critics Association Award for best new play and recipient of 2009’s Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award. "I'm beyond excited to be working with Infinite Abyss on a film version of The Gravedigger. The play has enjoyed several productions, but film takes the story to another level. A real cemetery, real tombstones, a world lit in moonlight...I can't wait," says Zettelmaier.
The Gravedigger is a gothic horror story set in Germany in the 1700s and focuses on Victor Frankenstein and his creation, the Monster- characters originally created by Mary Shelley in her classic novel Frankenstein. In Zettelmaier's version, the Monster has murdered Victor Frankenstein's friends and family in a fit of rage and escaped to a desolate cemetery in Bavaria where he meets a solitary gravedigger and a mysterious gypsy. There, the Monster struggles with both his budding humanity and murderous impulses while his creator, Victor Frankenstein, hunts him relentlessly, hell-bent on revenge.
Infinite Abyss will mount the live production at their theater in Wilton Manors, Florida on March 28th, 2019 for 12 performances until it closes on April 20th, 2019. Immediately after closing the live show, the Foundry stage will be converted into a sound stage for one month, during which filming of The Gravedigger movie will commence.