Taylor Brodsky is exploring the legendary Slenderman in the HBO Documentary Films Beware the Slenderman. The fictional character inspired two 12-year-old girls in 2014 to stab a classmate nearly 20 times in little Waukesha, Wisconsin. In the project, Brodsky got exclusive access to the families of both girls charged with the crime. The documentary seeks to explore the effect that Internet lore has on real-life actions and how the digital age is saturating the imagination and actions of children. The synopsis is as follows:
Shot over 18 months with heartbreaking access to the families of the would-be murderers, the film plunges deep down the rabbit hole of their crime, a Boogeyman and our society’s most impressionable consumers of media. The entrance to the internet can quickly lead us to its dark basement, within just a matter of clicks. How much do we hold children responsible for what they find there?
Beware the Slenderman premieres at SXSW Friday, March 11, at 9pm at the Topfer Theatre. There will also be a SXSW panel, entitled “Down the Rabbit Hole: Slenderman, Children & The Internet,” with both Brodsky and Bill Weier, the father of one of the accused girls on Sunday, March 13 at 3:30pm at the Austin Convention Center.