By Sara Vilkomerson
April 18, 2012 at 01:09 PM EDT

Want to see a whole new (jerk-y) side of Adam Brody? Check out this clip from, Double or Nothing, a short film in competition at the Tribeca Film Festival. It’s about a couple leaving a bar (played by Brody and Louisa Krause) when they’re approached by a homeless man (Keith David). And then things take a very dark turn. (How to explain? Just trust us on this one and watch the exclusive clip below.)

Of course, once you know that this pitch black comedy was written by Neil LaBute (In the Company of Men), everything makes a little bit more sense. “It’s kind of a crazy story,” says director Nathaniel Krause. “This film actually counted as my graduate thesis project for USC’s School of Cinematic Arts. It’s a lot like hitting the lottery — being able to work with such amazing material written by Neil and such phenomenal actors.”

Back in November of 2010, Krause asked his sister Louisa (Martha Marcy May Marlene) if she’d appear in his graduate school film. She then asked LaBute, whom she had worked with, if he had anything Krause could shoot, and “Two weeks later I had a script in my inbox,” says the young director. “It was absolutely insane. I read it and fell instantly in love.”

Casting his sister in the project was a no-brainer, but how did he think of Brody for the role? “The character is not exactly the most likeable guy, but I thought that it was really important that we needed somebody that had something that was charming about him,” says Krause. And after the one day shoot in Pasadena, he can attest: “Adam is an absolutely phenomenal actor.

Next up for Krause is a feature screenplay titled Dial-Up. “It takes place in 1997 actually,” he says. “It’s a teen coming-of-age comedy road trip. The moral of the story basically is a young man learning that relationships and human interaction is a lot more complex face-to-face than words on a chat screen so it’s pretty much like a teen comedy but geared towards 30-somethings that were in high school during the middle to late ’90s.”

The Tribeca Film Festival runs in New York from April 18-29, and Double or Nothing premieres on April 22. See exclusive clips for other select Tribeca short films here, here, here, and here.

Read more:

Michael Fassbender lights up Tribeca short, ‘Pitch Black Heist’

‘The Avengers’ to close Tribeca Festival

Tribeca Film Festival: Morgan Spurlock, Michelle Williams, and more

James Franco’s ‘General Hospital’ movie to headline Tribeca

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