Courtesy of Lily Weisberg

Yale alumni Lily Weisberg ’21 and Matt Nadel ’21 premiered their short film called “Studio 210” together with Edie Astley earlier this month online.

“Studio 210” explores the relationship that forms between 19-year-old Miles and his mother’s friend Camille in her art studio. The film will be shown at the Santa Fe International Film Festival, NewFilmmakers New York and Mystic Film Festival and is now available for online viewing.

“I was really thinking about the process of creating the character and the narrative arc of the movie,” said Weisberg, who directed the film. “It was so rewarding.”

Weisberg and Nadel, both of whom worked on film during their time at Yale, initially applied to the startup incubator program at Yale’s Tsai Center for Innovative Thinking to create a production company that supported female and queer filmmakers. The two then used some of their grant money to produce their first film, “Studio 210.”

Weisberg, Nadel, Astley and the rest of their production team shot the film during the height of the pandemic in August 2020. After adhering to quarantines and safety precautions, the team filmed for six days in Garrison, New York, and in a studio in Red Hook, Brooklyn.

As director, Weisberg led a crew of around 11 people. The script was written by Astley and produced by Nadel, Ian Homsy ’22 and Audrey Roh. It stars Mili Avital, Philip Schneider, Felix Salmon and Rebecka Deroche. It also features Bettina Campomanes as director of photography, Chloe Ramos as assistant camera and Anya Pertel ’22 as production designer, Ranya Aloui and David Gutnik as editors, Eli Kravetz and Mike Bloom as gaffers and Kellen Silver as sound engineer. Nadel and TRoh were assistant directors, and the film had original music from Melisande Pope and Jason Altshuler ’23.

With monetary aid and resources from Tsai CITY and Yale’s Slifka Center, Weisberg created an environment where every member took the film “extremely seriously,” she said. Despite her background in filmmaking, this was her first time on a professional set.

“It was a really happy set environment, and people got along so well,” Weisberg said.

The film’s co-stars include Israeli actress Mili Avital — who has previously been in films with Johnny Depp and David Schwimmer — and current Yale student Philip Schneider ’24.

Weisberg said that she first met Schneider in the “Acting Shakespeare” class during her junior fall — a course taught by the Dean of the School of Drama James Bundy. “Phil just blew me away — watching him do those Shakespearean monologues was actually one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen,” Weisberg said.

Schneider said that despite his off-Broadway experience in high school, “Studio 210” was his first film.

“I think it was a really formative experience for me and I was really nervous about how it would be in this totally different media,” Schneider said. “Lily, Matt and Edie all cultivated a really friendly and happy and creative environment.”

To add depth to each character, Weisberg created music playlists to help the actors understand their roles. She also recommended a list of reference movies that influenced the short film, including “Beginners,” “A Bigger Splash,” “The Graduate” and “La Piscine.”

While the pandemic introduced some challenges — the entire cast and crew lived in one house during the shooting process — the physical proximity also brought the team closer together.

“There was so much loneliness from constantly being on Zoom and constantly being in your bed,” Nadel, who was assistant director and producer, said. “[On ‘Studio 210’] we just felt so [present] in the world to do something creative, not from behind a computer screen, but with other people.

Nadel and Weisberg hope to put on a screening of “Studio 210” at Yale in the near future.