Teaser, Reviews & Screenings

Audience Award, StokerCon's Final Frame 2022


"Izzy Lee's new short film, Meat Friend features a sentient pile of hamburger meat taken over by an ex-con, as it teaches after-school lessons to a child. You know, the important stuff... like "how to make it look like an accident." In a strange time, Lee felt "When life gets weird, get weirder. The global pandemic only made us want to escape to a more heightened place, an alternate reality where the unreal can happen, where absurdity meets the vaguely sinister. What will happen next? No one knows. Welcome to the world of Meat Friend!” — Angel

“…a light-hearted satire featuring a psychopathic piece of ground beef. Meat Friend might feel like quite a departure for director and co-writer Izzy Lee, but underneath the fun exterior, there’s a dark level that is far more delicious than the glob of processed meat. The opening montage features the whole production line of beef - from delightful cows grazing to the hanging carcasses, and finally, the minced meat goodness. All juxtaposed with some cheery kids’ TV-style music. The mixing of styles continues with the title character, a simple puppet with a gruff, aggressive tone but strangely endearing. Marnie McKendry does well as the youngster, a role that could easily have been annoying. She also comes out with this writer’s favourite expression since, well… anything from The Greasy Strangler, ‘More beef - less cheese!’” — Martin Unsworth, Starburst Magazine

"While Izzy Lee’s latest may not be horror in the strictest sense of the word, it does start with a little girl attempting to microwave ground beef, which is automatically off-putting enough for its inclusion here. Naturally, things only get funkier from there, as the beef becomes possessed by an ex-con who proceeds to teach the little girl a variety of important life lessons, such as making a shiv, that would surely make Mr. Rogers proud. The creature design for Meat Friend is a unique combination of grotesque and endearing, which is also an apt description for the short itself. Just, get ready to get weird. Really, really weird.” Bryan Christopher,

"Meat Friend perfectly blends dark satire with childlike whimsy. It’s the perfect short film for parents who are probably sick of being forced to watch the same children’s TV shows with their kids. Yet the dark humor and horror elements still make it enjoyable for a wider audience. Lee clearly knows what she’s doing and is able to achieve a great balance between the different themes introduced. This is a short film you will want to keep an eye out for as it makes its way through the film festival circuit.” — Molly Henery, The Blogging Banshee

"...eight minutes of cinematic absurdity of the highest order filled to the brim with prison shivs, blood, cocaine, heart-clogging friendship… and threats… and it is fun as all unholy hell!”




Meat Friend Poster_4x6.jpg

Synopsis: An ex-con, sentient pile of hamburger meat teaches after-school lessons to a child.



Co-Written, Produced & Directed by Izzy Lee

Co-Written, Puppeteered & Produced by: Steve Johanson

Starring: Marnie McKendry, Megan Duffy, Steve Johanson (Meat Friend voice)

Cinematography: Sophia Cacciola


Editor & VFX : Michael J. Epstein

Score: Shayne Gryn

Sound Recording & Mix: Michael J. Epstein

Assistant Camera/BTS Stills: Ryan Oksenberg

Puppet Design/Build, Additional VFX & Poster Art: Eli Dorsey

Executive Producers: Paul Furio, Mary McDonagh, Bruce Labbate, Kevin Sluder, Carter Johnson


Thank you: The McKendrys, Gary Sherman, Adam Egypt Mortimer, Jeffrey Stackhouse, Shane Brady, Ryan Lambert, GD Dearborn, Chris Walas

World Premiere

Boston Sci-Fi Film Festival

Somerville, MA


Plays w/CRABS! 

Renegade Film Festival

Marietta, GA


Finalist, Side-Splitting Horror Comedy

Boston Underground Film Festival

Cambridge, MA


Teenage Waterpolo (Comedy Block)


Porto Alegre, Brazil


International Premiere

Bonebat Comedy of Horrors Film Festival

Seattle, WA


StokerCon's Final Frame Competition

Denver, CO



Etheria Film Night



Chattanooga Film Festival


6/23 - 6/28/22

Oak Cliff Film Festival

Dallas, TX


Late Night Shorts

Portland Horror Film Festival

Portland, OR

7/3/22, virtual & in person, Hollywood Theatre


Montreal, QC, Canada


Plays w/Blue Sunshine

Canadian Premiere

Snake Alley Festival of Film

Burlington, IA



London, United Kingdom


International Shorts Block

European Premiere


Winchester, VA


Plays w/Gouge Away



scary little films