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Synopsis: INLEY (Laura Vandervoort) is a woman adrift, her life smashed to pieces by a recent tragedy. But now she’s been sober for a handful of months and feels ready to make amends to the one person she hurt the most. Because of their traumatic history, her sponsor is vehemently opposed, but after talking with a sober friend, WES (Rainbow Sun Francks) she decides the only way to move forward is to revisit the past. As Fin approaches FRED (Gordon Pinsent) at the diner he frequents, she braces for his reaction when he sees her – but to her shock, Fred doesn’t react at all. In fact, he tells her to sit down. Beckons the waitress – orders her “the usual”. And Fin realizes that Fred, struggling with Alzheimer’s, believes Fin to be his wife, Stella. Unsure how to correct him, and relieved he doesn’t recognize her for who she is yet, Fin plays along – with consequences more devastating than Fin could ever have imagined.

AGE OF DYSPHORIA is a short film that examines memory – the joy of it, the curse, and the unpredictability of what we find ourselves remembering the longest. It examines healing and the need for human connection.



Run Time

19 minutes


Laura Vandervoort
Rainbow Sun Francks
Nola Augustson
Jill Frappier Gordon Pinsent

Directed by

Jessica Petelle

Written by

Zoe Robyn

Produced by

Emily Andrews
Brad Turner

Director's Statement

For the past 15 years, I have produced film, television, music videos, digital content, theatre and really anything that would give me the maximum opportunity to engage with talented creators from all walks of life. I love being a producer because I love telling stories, and watching storytellers thrive. Over the past few years, my path has expanded to include directing and I could not have done it without the incredible women who have supported me along the way.

I met Laura Vandervoort while consulting on the pilot episode of BITTEN. She was, by all accounts, the only actor who could play the role of Elena – fierce, bold, beautiful and bad ass. We maintained our friendship over the years and when our paths crossed again on a new series, we spent any free moments we had discussing ways to collaborate. I was honored when she shared the idea for AGE OF DYSPHORIA and couldn’t wait to get working on it. We met with writer Zoe Robyn who turned
the idea into a script, and then the ladies of FilmCoop came on board to produce. But, when Gordon Pinsent agreed to join us, our team was made whole.
At its core, Age of Dysphoria is a story of redemption. Finley and Fred are at different points in their life cycle, but they’re shared trauma and inability to process it brings them together for an unexpected conclusion. I truly hope everyone who watches this film feels the passion and sincerity that we brought to making it.

Director's Bio

JESSICA PETELLE has over fifteen years of experience as a producer of award- winning independent film, television, music video, interactive and digital content for advertising and entertainment.
As a digital content producer, she recently worked with Merman to produce the award-winning interactive digital film OUTAGE for IBM. Other clients include work for Volkswagen, Comedy Central,, Fox, SyFy, BlackBoxTV among others.

Over the past several years, she has felt the embrace of the vibrant filmmaking community in Canada, dedicating
time and talent toward international co-production. She has served as a production consultant on FOX’s WAYWARD PINES, and SYFY/SPACE Channel series BITTEN, as a Co- Producer for two seasons of THE SHANNARA CHRONICLES for Viacom, and as a Co-Executive Producer for the newly released Netflix Original Series, V- WARS, starring Ian Somerhalder and Adrian Holmes.

Jessica marked her directorial debut with the award-winning short film ALL GOOD and premiered at Palm Springs Intl’ Short Fest. Her second short film ELLIE & SAM premiered at the Vancouver Women in Film Festival the following year. As an Executive Producer and Director of AGE OF DYSPHORIA, starring Laura Vandervoort and Gordon Pinsent, Jessica has brought her unique skill set of working in action drama television to the short film medium.

A graduate of Indiana University with degrees in Theatre and Telecommunications, Jessica was recently appointed to represent alumni in the music and entertainment industry on the board of the Indiana University Alumni Association LA. She was a participant in the Women in the Directors Chair Career Advancement Module in Toronto and is a member of the Producers Guild of America serving on the International Committee, the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television, Alliance of Women Directors and Women in Film and Television (LA and Toronto).

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