: Narrative Short
GENRE: Drama
STATUS: Development


Drifts explores the changes in life that unsettle our awareness of the world: a father and son watch the sun rise each day despite the boy’s failing eyesight; a burnt-out photographer struggles to rediscover her passion in the throes of a deep melancholy.


A father and son camping at the shore watch the sun rise and set each day. Into this landscape arrives a middle-aged woman and her teen sons—on vacation from the city. Her sense of weariness is palpable, though she does her best to hide it.

As the kids play together, the woman learns from the
boy’s father that the boy has a genetic condition that will eventually leave him blind. In their final days at the beach, the woman watches the boy’s wide-eyed curiosity toward the beauty around him, while she struggles to connect with the present moment.

Back in the city, she is late to a commercial photo shoot where she bickers with her business partner about the struggling state of their studio.

She is unnerved by an assistant hanging her old art photography on the wall. Staying late to finish work, she is again confronted with the photo, a reminder of her passion for photography that she’s buried.

She has all but forgotten about the boy and his curiosity. But while waiting for a cab, the flicker of the setting sun reaches her. Not as a glorious sunset over the water, but as small blip of light that reflects through the maze of buildings.


Drifts is about our awareness of the beauty in the world, and the obstacles that interrupt our connection to it. Ultimately this film follows Nica in her melancholy. And an exploration of that ennui–the murky collection of things it emerges from and how one copes with it–is at the heart of this story. How does depression rob us of our ability to find awe in small moments of everyday wonder? How might the story of Luca’s fading eyesight have an affect on those who take their sight for granted? In the construction of the film, that mix of melancholy and beauty will pervade. The story does this inherently in it’s change of location from the lush exteriors of coastal Maine to the cold interiors of a New York City photography studio. The two environments provide a cinematic way to explore our characters as they engage with these disparate settings. The tone of this film is naturalistic, restrained, observational, patient, and open. Think Kelly Reichardt, Eliza Hittman, or Mia Hansen-Love in their subtle, understated emotional dramas.


Peter Coccoma - Writer/Director

PETER COCCOMA is a director and composer. He has directed documentary, experimental, and music videos for Sony, Smithsonian Folkways, and Bella Union records. His 2020 experimental short film, JEANO, was made with Smithsonian Folkways. His newest narrative short film, GIRO PREPARES FOR DEATH, premiered at the Minneapolis St. Paul Film Festival in 2023. His debut solo album, A PLACE TO BEGIN, is an instrumental record combining electronics and strings that was featured as one of NPR’s Best Albums of 2022.

Breanne Thomas - Producer

BREANNE THOMAS is a self-taught, Brooklyn-based producer whose award-winning shorts have played MoMA, Rotterdam, Fantasia, Champs-Élysées, Palm Springs, and several American regional festivals. She is a 2021 Sundance Producers Intensive fellow and in 2022 her upcoming feature with director Chris Osborn was one of 22 selected projects to present at the Gotham Week Project Market.

RATHAUS - Production Company

RATHAUS is a production company with offices in Brooklyn and Detroit. We create progressive films, branded content, and music videos. We not only represent leading creative voices but also pride ourselves on working as a team of artists who inspire and grow together. RATHAUS has produced Tim Sutton's FUNNY FACE (Berlinale 2020) and DARK NIGHT (Arebelos), Cedric Cheung-Lau's THE MOUNTAINS ARE A DREAM THAT CALL TO ME (Sundance 2020, Criterion Channel/Janus Films), Diana Peralta's DE LO MIO (HBO, Criterion Channel/Janus Films), and Shabier Kichner's award winning short film, DADLI (The Criterion Channel). Founded by Madeleine Askwith, Alexandra Byer, Shabier Kirchner, and Kevin Steen.


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