‘Little Fish’ Director Chad Hartigan on the Film’s Eerie Pandemic Theme & Explains Ending of the Film

My first impression of Little Fish was a “WOW!”. Why? The backdrop of the story takes place during a global pandemic. Eerie! The film stars Jack O’Connell and Olivia Cooke. Written by Mattson Tomlin and directed by Chad Hartigan.

I had an opportunity to speak to Chad about the film. He spoke about Mattson writing the script and how he views the film now that an actual pandemic has swept over the world since the movie was written. Chad spoke about the casting of the leads, Jack O’Connell and Olivia Cooke. Plus, he explains the ending of the film. So, spoiler warning towards the end of the interview.


Chad was super nice and cool. Seemed very down-to-earth. I enjoyed my time speaking to him. Obviously the major talking point was the pandemic in real life and in the movie. Obviously Chad was surprised how the movie has a many comparisons. I thought his answer to how he views the movie now then he did before was really interesting and thought-provoking.

Jack O’Connell and Olivia Cooke do a really nice job in the film. I learned that Chad came aboard after Oliva and Jack were cast and that another director attached to the film prior had dropped out. I’m glad Chad didn’t recast.

Chad was very complimentary of Mattson. Chad mentioned that the script was adapted from a short story by Aja Gabel. Mattson did turn it into what we see on screen though. The plot is heavily centered on a couple and their relationship though. So if you’re expecting a pandemic thriller, it’s really more a of romantic sci-fi film.

I was intrigued by the ending of the film. Had to ask Chad about it to help me put it together and understand it. Thankfully he did. I’m sure there will be many others that are wondering what happened and what was the intention of the ending. Now, we have some clarity thanks to Chad.

LITTLE FISH in Theaters and On Demand February 5, 2021

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