Runaway Pen Productions 

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Best Short Film Award!

Posted on March 25, 2011 at 2:26 PM Comments comments (4)

This past weekend, "Evaluating Kaitly," the most recent of the Runaway Pen short films, had its Las Vegas premiere at the 2011 Vegas Media Xpo. Following a great screening in which the film received a large round of applause and even requests for the film to be screen again, "Evaluating Kaitly" was awarded Best Short Film.

Andrew Gilbert directed the short film, and co-wrote and produced it with Mikel J. Wisler, who also served as cinematographer and editor. The film was inspired by the true story of Judy Sherwood, who is a cancer surviver. Starring in the film are Lisa Staples (who plays the character inspired by Sherwood), Greg Teghtmeyer, and Tara Rusinack. The film was shot in August 2009 in South Bend, Indiana. Post-production, conducted by Wisler, took place in Quincy, Massachusetts. This is the second festival "Evaluating Kaitly" has played in, having just had its North American premiere not too far from Las Vegas just last month at the 2011 Dam Short Film Festival. We are very honored and excited to received this recognition. Response to "Evaluating Kaitly" has been overwhelmingly positive and supportive.

This is the first award for "Evaluating Kaitly." Our short film, "Cold October" has also won Best Screenplay at the 2009 Terror Film Festival and was nominated for Best Horror Short Film at the 2009 ShockerFest. "Cellar Door was also awarded the 2007 Cinephile Film Arts Grant for completion funds.

We are currently exploring distribution options for "Evaluating Kaitly." We look forward to making the film available to the public very soon. In the mean time, you can check out the trailer for the film bellow.

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Cold October on DVD Jan. 12

Posted on January 7, 2010 at 11:15 AM Comments comments (2)

The most successful short film Runaway Pen Productions has made to date, “Cold October,” will soon be available on DVD through The DVD will include some additional content produced by Runaway Pen  as well as production photos.

“We are very excited to have this new distribution avenue through Indieflix,” says Mikel J. Wisler, the film’s co-writer and director.  “We’re hopeful that everyone who’s been following news about this film for a while now and has been wanting to see it--and even those of have seen it and just want to support us--will hop on to starting January 12 and will buy a copy of the film for themselves. It certainly would mean a lot to us! We’re excited about how Indieflix profits work, and we really need the revenue from project like this to come in to help us with development costs for new projects, including a feature we’re seeking funding for.”

“Cold October” was just recently presented with the award for Best Screenplay from the Philadelphia based Terror Film Festival as well as receiving an Honorable Mention in the Best Horror Short Film category from ShockerFest in California. For more information about the film, go to:

Cold October Wins Best Screenaply

Posted on October 29, 2009 at 10:38 AM Comments comments (0)

Late last night, Runaway Pen Producitons learned that their short film, "Cold October" which was nominated for Best Horror Short Film at ShockerFest (which gave it an Honorable Mention) and was nominated for Best Screenplay at Terror Film Festival was indeed awareded the Best Screenplay award by Terror Film Fest. Director, Mikel J. Wisler, who was able to attend the screening of "Cold October" at TFF, was not able to be in attendance for the Awards ceremony this past Saturday night. Only yesterday evening were the awards officially posted to the TFF website, where screenplay co-writer and producer, Andrew Gilbert, spotted the announcement that "Cold October" was given the award and promplty called up Wisler, who was off working late on post-production for a project he's currently producing with Jedidiah Burdick. The screenplay for "Cold October" was written by Andrew Gilbert & Mikel J. Wisler.

Official awards page for TFF:

Officia awards page for ShockerFest:

Cold October Well Recieved at TFF

Posted on October 27, 2009 at 11:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Last Thursday, "Cold October" played a the 2009 Terror Film Festival in Philadelphia. It was really well received by the audience and festival organizers. Following the screening, director Mikel J. Wisler took part in a Q&A time. Questions ranged from the execution of special effects, size of budget, to story inspiration. "My favorite question," says Wisler, "was definitely the one about what inspired this story. It was pretty strange and exciting to explain to an audience at a horror film festival that my humble psychological thriller was really my means of exploring the question of what an Old Testament prophet might look like today? Would we just diagnose such a person as mentally ill? Would this person be too closed off to the possibility of a God who want to communicate with him?"

Several people paid high compliments to "Cold October" for it's achievements in cinematography, music, style, plot, and performances by the actors. "It was really humbling and exciting to be part of TFF," says Wisler, "and to be nominated for Best Screenplay. My thanks to everyone at TFF for making me feel so welcome. I'm looking forward to reading their press release of this years festival with the interviews of all filmmakers inattendance this year." Once that article is published, a link will be posted here on the Runaway Pen website.

Mikel J. Wisler at the 2009 Terror Film Festival.


In September, "Cold October" played at the 2009 ShockerFest and was nominated for Best Horror Short Film. Just recently, Wisler received his official certificate for the nomination since he wasn't able to attend the California based festival. "Cold October" also played last Friday at the 2009 Sacramento Horror Film Festival. Due to Wisler's attendance of Terror Film Festival and limited funds, he did not make it out to California for that festival as well. "I'm really honored to be part of both ShockerFest and Sacramento Horror," he explains, "and I really wish I could make it to every festival. But traveling isn't cheap, especially on an indie filmmaker's salery ... or maybe I should say, on a freelance videographer's salary--this indie film thing isn't paying yet. But one step at a time."

This week, "Cold October" plays at the 2009 Southern Appalachian International Film Festival in Tennessee. Wisler expresses his desire to attend the festival. Again, limited by budget, he will be unable to be in attendance for that festival.

The official certificate from the 2009 ShockerFest.

Cold October at Three Festivals this October.

Posted on October 8, 2009 at 10:56 AM Comments comments (0)

The most widely seen and talked about short film from Runaway Pen, "Cold October," will be playing at three film festivals in October. Just last week, producers Mikel J. Wisler and Andrew Gilbert learned that the film will be playing at Sacramento Horror Film Festival on Friday, October 23rd during the 3:30 PM Shorts Program 1. The festival takes place in the historic Colonial Theatre in Sacramento, California.


This was a pleasant surprise for Gilbert and Wisler, who were already quite exited about the exposure "Cold October" will have in the up coming Terror Film Festival (TFF) in Philadelphia and the Southern Appalachian International Film Festival (SOAPIFF) at East Tennessee State University. "Cold October" will be playing at TFF on Thursday, October 22nd during the 6:45 PM selection of short films, and will be playingat SOAPIFF on Thursday, October 29th during the 7 PM selection of short films.

For more info on these three film festivals, please visit their respective websites:

Festival Selections and Nominations.

Posted on September 21, 2009 at 10:38 AM Comments comments (0)

In the recent week, the Runaway Pen Productions short film, “Cold October,” directed by Mikel J. Wisler, has gained a quite a bit of film festival attention. “Cold October” will be playing at the 2009 ShockerFestin Riverbank, California on September 26th at 10 AM. In October, the film will be playing at two festivals. The first is the 2009 Terror Film Festival (TFF) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from October 20th to 24th. The second is 2009 Southern Appalachian International Film Festival (SOAPIFF) taking place on the campus of East Tennessee State University from October 22nd to 31st. “Cold October” will be playing at TFF on October 22 at 6:45 PM. SOAPIFF has not yet announced their screening schedule and nominations for awards.

As for award nominations, “Cold October” has garnered a nomination forBest Horror Short Film at the ShockerFest and Best Screenplay at TFF.Wisler and Andrew Gilbert, who also produced, shot, and acted in the film, conceptualized and wrote the script together. These two nominations represent the first nominations for festival awards for aproject by Runaway Pen Productions.

“It’s really surreal to suddenly have our film playing in three places and getting nominations,” says Wisler. “We’re very excited. These things take some time, and it can be really easy to lose the momentum while you spend a year submitting a short film to festivals. Lord knows we’ve piled up the rejection letters as is. But then, suddenly, it’s like the film finally finds its crowd, it’s fit. It’s also a little crazy to think that we wrapped shooting on ‘Cold October’ almost two whole years ago. I love this film; it’s really something special to me. And yet, Ido feel that we’ve really improved as filmmakers since making ‘Cold October.’ So it’s really cool to see it get all this attention at last,and gives me real hope that ‘Always Reaching’—which we are submitting to festivals now—and ‘Evaluating Kaitly,’ which we are currently cutting, will also enjoy some great festival exposure in the next couple of years."

Wisler plans on attending the 2009 Terror Film Festival. "I'd love to make it to all of them" he explains. "But I'm just not able to get out toCalifornia right now, and Terror and Southern Appalachian happen almostat the same time. Due to those factors and a tight indie filmmaker'stravel budget, I'm afraid I have to stick close to home right now.Regardless, we're all paying careful attention to what's going on ateach of these festivals."

Still frame from "Cold October." Matthew Eaton (left) and Brittany Baughman (Fried) (right).