Director Clarifies Walking Distance Title Change


Named Experimental Activity for foreign territories only

After yesterday’s surprising post regarding the name change of the indie horror flick Walking Distance to Experimental Activity, we double-checked with writer/director Mel House to officially set the record straight.

An article on The Hollywood Reporter announced the title change, which bared resemblance to actress Katie Featherston’s other film Paranormal Activity. (Featherston appears in both.)

Producer/star James LaMarr issued a press statement to Dread Central stating the following:

“Our title is still Walking Distance. The alternate title that Showcase came up with after they acquired the international rights over the weekend applies to the foreign market only. They felt they needed a catchier title for that market, and we gave them permission to change it. We sent them several alternate suggestions, but they ultimately chose their own. We are excited to have Showcase represent our film abroad – they have decades of experience and even more, they are excited about all aspects of the project. We look to them as the experts and trust them to make the decisions that best position our film for success.”

“Domestically we are still Walking Distance and are very happy with that title and artwork. We look forward to making a domestic deal soon and our sales representative (Circus Road Films) is actively exploring that now.”

Writer/director Mel House got in touch with Shock and wanted to add to LaMarr’s statement. He writes:

“I would go on to add that personally, as the writer/director, the original title means a lot to me and carries a lot of weight in my own mind. Beyond that, in a purely pragmatic sense, we’ve gotten posters and t-shirts made with Walking Distance all over them, as well as put a lot of sweat equity and time into going to conventions and building up buzz that was connected to that particular title. So, of course the suggestion to change the title wasn’t taken lightly.”

“With that said, it’s not like we’re in a position to be hardheaded about such things. We are independent filmmakers trying to sell our movie. Sometimes that involves making concessions in some areas, or deferring to a more experienced entity. The lack of genre specificity of the title Walking Distance has been brought up in the past, so it’s nothing new. Showcase Entertainment has a proven track record, and as James mentioned, they really believe in the project, so we trust them to do what’s best for the movie and for us. Ultimately, the movie everyone will eventually see will be Walking Distance at heart, no matter what the title card says. And that’s really all I can ask for.”

There you have it. In the U.S., it’s still called Walking Distance.

Source: Robg., Dread Central