Living Fossil

Living Fossil

November 11, 2016

Experimental Short | 2014 | 2 min 25 seconds

Every spring thousands of horseshoe crabs spawn along Mid-Atlantic beaches under the glow of the full moons; a reoccurring ritual for the last 450 million years. Citizen scientists venture out along the shores of Brooklyn, NY to keep tally of the animal’s population. The film attempts to document the annual observance on 16mm film exposed in timelapse by ambient moonlight. LIVING FOSSIL is just a brief glimpse into this prehistoric phenomenon.

The Process

Sean Hanley shot and hand-processed the 16mm footage and then edited the piece with the help of Jeff Sterrenberg.  Members of the Collective contributed to the sound design during a foley recording session in the Meerkat office. The soundtrack was created with shells, rocks, water, sand, nail clippers and even parts from an old clock.


Ann Arbor Film Festival, Ann Arbor, MI
Echo Park Film Center, Los Angeles, CA
Gowanus Experimental Film Festival, Brooklyn, NY
FLEXfest, Gainsville, FL
l’Alternativa: Hall Selects, Barcelona, Spain
Microlights, Milwaukee, WI
Antimatter, Victoria, BC Canada
Imagine Science Film Festival, Brooklyn, NY
New Orleans Film Festival, New Orleans, LA
Edinburgh International Film Festival, Edinburgh, Scotland
Winnipeg Underground Film Festival, Winnipeg, MB Canada
Union Docs, Brooklyn, NY
Strange Beauty Film Festival, Durham, NC
Aurora Picture Show: Extremely Shorts Film Festival, Houston, TX
EDOC: (Encuentros del otro cine) festival internacional de cine documental, Quito, Ecuador
Haverhill Experimental Film Festival, Haverhill, MA
Milwaukee Underground Film Festival, Milwaukee, WI
Iowa City International Documentary Film Festival, Iowa City, IA
DINCA Vision Quest, Chicago, IL

Production Team

Sean Hanley, Jeff Sterrenberg, Dara Messinger

The New Che of Havana