‘Deleter’ Teaser Trailer Enters the Shadowy World of Online Content Moderation

Red has previously described the film as an exploration into the dark secrets of the online moderation world

Cover Image Credits: YouTube

 Director Mikhail Red’s film Deleter, the first teaser has been released.

The techno-horror and psychological thriller is based on a script by Mikhail and Nikolas Red, the film follows Lyra, who works shifts at a shadowy online content moderation office where employees, known as deleters, are tasked with the process of filtering graphic uploads from reaching social media platforms. The responsibility of censorship proves bearable for Lyra, whom her co-workers, as well as her boss Simon, observe as a cold person unfazed by the disturbing imagery she sees on a daily basis. What they do not know is that Lyra hides a deep trauma. Lyra’s attempt to erase and forget her past has forced her to don an apathetic face to the horrors of the world.


Red had previously described the film as an exploration into the dark secrets of the online moderation world, explaining: “[The Philippines] is now known as the content moderation capital of the world. Moderators work in clandestine or shadowy operations and are often exposed to the filth of society, watching countless videos and images with disturbing and graphic content, which can lead to lasting trauma, as well as psychological and emotional distress all for a low wage.”

“Most of them do not have proper access to proper work benefits, mental health support and counselling,” he added.


“Deleter” is produced by Viva Films, an established production house that has credits including Erik Matti’s action thriller “Buy Bust.” This is the first collaboration between Red and Viva. Production will wrap by the end of September and the plan is to target film festivals that take place at the end of 2022 and the first quarter of 2023.

“Production has been observing usual COVID-19 protocols but is scaled to a few locations to create a claustrophobic environment focusing on the conflicted lives of the social media censors and deleters, and exploring their psyche and shady line of work,” Red told Variety. “Philippines is now the fastest growing hub for this outsourced work, mostly working for international clients in clandestine setups. We interviewed a lot of these deleters, some through online forums and deep web, using some anecdotes and their experiences to help us craft the world and character of Lyra. The technique is similar to my earlier work such as ‘Rekorder,’ where I used multiple formats and mediums, cctv, webcam, cellphone footage and viral videos.”


This is Lustre’s first appearance in a horror film, has returned to acting after a three-year hiatus to focus on music with the revenge thriller Greed, which premiered earlier this year in April. She is best known for her roles in 2014’s Talk Back and You’re Dead, 2016’s This Time and 2018’s Never Not Love You.

A release date for Deleter has yet to be announced.