Anna Roisman Caps Off 2020 with Her Best Pandemic Parody So Far

Talkhouse's queen of the shot-for-shot parody gives David Fincher a run for his money with her riff on the classic final scene in Se7en.

My boyfriend Jared and I started making these shot-for-shot parodies back when we thought the pandemic was going to last a month, maybe three at most. We were so young and naive and bored! Neither of us had jobs, we were struggling to pay our rent, but we had our sense of humor. We had made a few videos together back when life was normal, so we decided to give ourselves a little project. At first it started with just the idea to recreate Home Alone in our small Brooklyn apartment, shot for shot. We accomplished it! The Home Alone parody was so much fun. People seemed to love it, and so our quarantine filmmaker egos grew big. We wanted to tackle something more impressive, maybe in the bathroom. Could we do the rain scene from The Notebook? Sure, why not. The Notebook did really well so we went one step further and turned our bathroom into Jack’s death scene in Titanic, and call it Tubtanic. These shoot days were like nine- or 10-hour days. We showed up to “set” (our bathroom) ready to work. We made it feel like a job, because it was the job we had! We argued, we created, we forgot to eat. It was just like being on real sets we used to work on … with worse craft services, for sure.

Then Jared got a job and I started some freelance hosting and shooting. We were busier, and tired. We had an idea for our next parody, but weren’t sure if we could do it. For some reason, it kept getting pushed off. We knew we had to get it done before the winter, because this one was an outside shoot. We wanted to take it out of the bathroom and world of romance. Mostly because after being stuck with each other for so long we fell out of love. (OK, that’s a joke, and I’m laughing.) We love horror movies and wanted to dip into that genre. Could we recreate a horror scene? Aren’t we already living through the horror scene of 2020? It was weeks of deciding and planning, if you can believe, for a two-minute video. Then we landed on the 1995 crime thriller Se7en. A Se7en shot-for-shot parody on our roof. It had an iconic scene that people could recognize, even if they weren’t a huge fan of the movie. So we started planning … what would go in the box?

In a pandemic, you start to learn what’s really important to you. And baked goods are at the top of the list for so many of us. So we decided to make it a cake box, and “hangry” would be the eighth deadly sin. Simple and stupid! We still defend that this was our dumbest idea yet. We were going to have our dog fake-shit on the cake and pretend to be a serial killer. We loved it. Our dog is a huge part of our casting process. There’s only two of us, so he has now become our third human actor, even though he’s an eight-pound toy poodle. He’s the lead in this parody, unlike his cameos in the others. We had our friend Alexis Guerreros voice him. Bobby Flay the Dog (yes, that is his name) plays the Kevin Spacey role, naturally, and it only took us four days to shoot this. I don’t blame the dog for the amount of shoot days, I blame the sun. We needed the sun at a certain time of day to bring David Fincher’s vision to life from our roof, and we did this literally the weekend of daylight savings. Bad move on our part! The sun kept going in earlier and earlier. There were two days that I got in my Brad Pitt costume and gave myself a black eye with makeup and then we couldn’t shoot.

By this point, we started joking that we’d never finish! But then, one day we did. Jared is our magical editor and he decided to color correct it in such a way that it looked like the movie and the clouds and sun moving wouldn’t be so obvious. We gave ourselves a deadline: It had to come out on December 8th, because it was going to be called EI8HT. I don’t think anyone knows what the date is on any given day anymore, but to us this meant something. And so, it came out on the 8th. It’s probably our sleekest, most accurate, (still dumbest) shot-for-shot parody. We do it for the retweets and regrams and shares at this point. (David Fincher, are you reading this? I’m @AnnaRoisman and I’m waiting.) It’s a challenge for ourselves, and we almost didn’t make it on this one. We always say it’s our last one, but then we come up with another dumb idea when we’re really bored and start pre-pro. So, until next time, don’t get “hangry” and please enjoy our latest video!

Anna Roisman is a comedian, host, writer and actor in NYC. Anna is known for hosting HQ Trivia and HQ Words on the Emmy-Nominated app. She is a regular comedian on the Buzzfeed series, “Did You See This?” Anna’s work has been featured in the Tribeca Film Festival, New York TV Festival, Just For Laughs in Montreal, People magazine, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, VultureHuffington Post, Funny Or Die, Elite Daily, and more. She is the creator and host of the podcast Unemployed With Anna Roisman, and co-producer and host of Quickie Fest: The One Minute Movie Festival in NYC. She writes a bad movie column called “Am I The Only One Who Loves…” for Talkhouse. She also likes good movies too! Anna performs standup comedy and sings all over. For comedy videos, reels, and press, check out