A lonely photographer begins to lose his grip on reality when he spots a mysterious doppelgänger roaming the streets.
Credits / Collaborators / Cast
Written & Directed by Mike Klubeck
Collin/The Doppelgänger…Dane Clarke II
Body Double…Andy Charles
Man in the Park…Isaac Nevrla
Director of Photography…Mike Klubeck
Assistant Camera…Nick Freeman
Production Sound Mixer…Ian Hunter
Production Design… Mike Klubeck
Composed by Antonio Romero
Post Sound Design and Mix by Tom Baylis
Music by…Beth Million
Special Thanks…Rommy Hidmi
The story behind the film
Photocopy came from a time of stagnation and isolation. Graduating college into a tumultuous 2020 full of pain and self-discovery left me feeling changed — I was aware of my personal growth and felt closer to my true self, but simultaneously felt distant from the self I had known the rest of my adolescence. How could I feel so close yet so distant from my identity? What does that mean about who I truly am? What does it mean for my understanding of myself, for the people I love, if there is no single, constant me? I wrote these feelings into the mind of my protagonist, Collin, and personified the inner disconnect in the form of a doppelgänger.
In our culture, the doppelgänger has often been used as a horror trope — a mysteriously familiar omen of death. Why is the idea of a doppelgänger so horrifying? It’s likely that seeing one’s self would lead anyone spiraling into insanity, causing us to question our own identities and realities. However, what if these fears were unfounded? Instead of losing a sense of identity by seeing ourselves, what if it actually allowed us to have a better understanding of our identity? Perhaps with an outside perspective, we can widen the lens we view ourselves through, and realize our identities comprise of so much more than our current trials and tribulations. I hope to subvert the classical horror trope by revealing the doppelgänger to not be the problem, but the answer.
I wrote Photocopy to explore the relationship my identity has with my adolescence as I transition to adulthood, merging psychological horror with the coming-of-age film to tell a story with both suspense and heart. I resonate most with films such as The Graduate and Lady Bird — films that make the audience consider their identities; their pasts, presents, and futures, and how they all contradict each other to tell us who we truly are. Writing this film has helped me realize that my identity isn’t one or the other; it isn’t just my past or just my present — it’s cumulative and ever-changing.
I don’t intend to speak for everyone with the ideas of self-exploration that I portray in this film, and I certainly don’t claim that I’ve figured out the answers to the questions I’ve posed. However, through writing this film, I have become comfortable with the idea of change and embrace it as part of life instead of fearing it, a sentiment I hope will be shared by its audiences.