Highlands Horror Film Fest

I had the pleasure of attending the Highlands Horror Film Fest in Highlands, New Jersey this past weekend and was honored that MOMMA, DON’T GO won the award for Best Short Film! Located on the Jersey Shore, the festival had the perfect atmosphere and setting with awesome Halloween decorations. Thank you to festival director Rob Kneller and the festival team. I hope to return with a future project.

New York No Limits Film Series 2021 Summit

After several virtual screenings at New York City-based film festivals, MOMMA, DON’T GO finally had its in-person NYC premiere this past Sunday (10/3) at the New York No Limits Film Series 2021 Summit. It felt fitting as my past festival hit WAFFLE (2010) had its NYC premiere at the film series’ very first event in January 2011. I was excited to return not only to the film series itself, but its usual venue Wild Project, an East Village arts performance space with a screening room in the back, perfect for watching a diverse block of short films and engaging with the artists who created them.

Despite several audience members leaving to take a bathroom break right before MOMMA started, the film’s screening was a success as it seemed to go over well. Whenever I watch it with an audience, I’m eager to see/hear the reception to its loud, gruesome climax. Fortunately, I heard the reactions I wanted, bringing a smile to my face. The audience members who returned halfway through the film were probably thrown for a loop. Hopefully they’ll seek out the film online to catch the three minutes they missed.

After the last short film screened, filmmakers in attendance gathered on the screening room stage for a Q&A. Joined by extremely talented MOMMA actress Julia Tolchin (“Claire”), we answered questions from the moderator about pre-production, production and character. The only question from the audience was for MOMMA, where I provided more information about the “medicine” vial in the film and its purpose, something I intend to provide a bit more background for in the feature-length version.

Momma, Don’t Go actress Julia Tolchin (middle) and director Rafael De Leon (right).

As in the past, I highly enjoyed my time at New York No Limits. Thank you to festival directors Tom Escovar, Robert Wagner, the NYNL team and the family and friends that came out to support MOMMA’s NYC premiere. I hope to submit a new horror project to NYNL sometime next year.

New interview with Twelve Cabins

Thank you to Twelve Cabins for featuring Momma, Don’t Go and for the interview, where I discuss my relationship with the horror genre, my experience making the film and what’s next. Check out the interview below.

Momma, Don’t Go / Goodbye Old Friend on ARROW PLAYER

My short horror films MOMMA, DON’T GO and GOODBYE OLD FRIEND are now streaming on Arrow Player!


Momma, Don’t Go

A mother and daughter struggle to survive a deadly home invasion.

Official selection of over 45 film festivals including the Nightmares Film Festival (2019) and Panic Fest (2020).

Screening info: https://rafaeldeleon.com/mommadontgo/

Goodbye Old Friend

A young woman is trapped in her apartment by her childhood imaginary friend, who has come back to haunt her.

Official Selection of over 25 film festivals including the Nightmares Film Festival (2018) and the Molins de Rei Horror Film Festival (2018).



A disfigured science fair champion invites her new friend over for dinner, but by the time dessert comes around, the two schoolmates will discover each other’s true, unpleasant natures.

Official Selection of over 40 film festivals including SXSW (2011) and Fantasia (2011).