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Synopsis: Left alone and heartbroken after a recent breakup, Dionne’s world is rocked by a domineering female photographer, Juliana, who forcefully inserts herself into Di’s life, showering her with compliments and requesting she become her new muse. Di’s quiet reservations are put aside as Juliana’s free spirit and mysterious aura enchants her; and her intensity challenges Di, who must submit to any and all of Juliana’s wants and desires. The fine line between fantasy and reality, satisfaction and oppression, and love and obsession is blurred as Di’s growing infatuation cascades her truth into a rabbit hole of deception and manipulation.


English, French

Run Time

15 minutes


Deming Magner (Dionne)
Ansley Layne (Juliana)
Will Peters (Guy)

Directed by

Hayley Bensmiller

Written by

Tom Hartig

Produced by

Bailey Grayson

Edited by

Lexi Johnson


John De Vito

Director's Statement

The initial idea behind “Femme Folle” came to me in the midst of an erratic episode of my life; I had a vision of two girls who become drawn to one another for all the wrong reasons and eventually must face the music and suffer the consequences. In particular, it was a story of being overwhelmed by emotion, and letting that emotion dictate your life and decisions, allowing it to lead down dark and unhealthy paths. I wanted a story that was uncompromising and authentic, as much as it was eccentric and larger than life. Our cast and crew fell in love with the story, and everyone devoted themselves to bringing it to life, endlessly giving it their all throughout the entirety of the film’s creation. For me, working with the phenomenal lead actresses in bringing these deeply personal characters to life is an experience I’ll never forget. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for watching.

Director's Bio

Hayley Bensmiller is a neuro-divergent LGBTQ+ female filmmaker and artist, known for award-winning narrative short films. She is a graduate of Chapman University with a BFA in Film Production, emphasis in Directing, and BA in French. Hayley has spent hundreds of hours working on set and has interned for several companies, including MGM Studios and in the Marche du Film at the Cannes Film Festival. She is currently based in Los Angeles, CA.

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