Few people have heard about the small town of Regina in the Saskatchewan region of Canada, including Surveillance director Jennifer Lynch.

“It rhymed with ‘vagina’ so I had to go,” jokes Lynch. “They call it the town that rhymes with ‘fun.’”

While she didn’t know it back then, this little Canadian town ended up being the perfect spot to film this thriller set in Middle America.

Surveillance follows the story of the three living victims of a horrible traffic “accident” on a windy, barren highway. It has all the signs of the serial killer-running-rampant-in-the-countryside, and a pair of federal agents, Sam Hallaway (Bill Pullman) and Elizabeth Anderson (Julia Ormond), are dispatched to figure out what really happened. As the story unfolds, it becomes evident that police officer Jack Bennet (Kent Harper) and cokehead Bobbi (Pell James) are keeping something from the investigators, and 8-year-old Stephanie may be the only one with the key to the truth. Filled with suspense and thrilling twists, Surveillance will keep you guessing until the end.

Pullman, one of the few cast members who knew Lynch personally before shooting began, says, “[Surveillance is] an amazing movie for a woman to have written and directed. It’s not the usual subject matter for a woman to investigate, but she sees a lot of horrible behavior and she has this unusual instinct to have a kind of a laugh about it all that’s both acknowledging of horror and some kind of contradictory joy that you can actually name the horror.”

But the film almost didn’t get produced. After an almost 15-year hiatus from directing, Lynch’s original script got panned by her father, legendary director (and this film’s executive producer), David Lynch.

“He called me at night when he had finished reading the script and he said, ‘This is way too sick, you can’t do this. You can’t end your film like this, it’s awful.’ He actually called me the sickest bitch he knew,” says Lynch.

And if you know anything about her father’s movies – Blue Velvet, for instance – that is really saying something.

Lynch did end up writing an alternate ending to placate her father and get him to put his name on the bill, but that was only the beginning of the filming process. It was only because of David Lynch’s involvement that the film got funded, and his star power also drew a number of the cast to get involved. It’s really a good thing, because some of the familiar faces like French Stewart, Cheri Oteri and Michael Ironside are given the opportunity to show their acting abilities in roles that might be considered out of the ordinary for them.

While this is only the second film she’s directed, all of her actors agree that Jennifer Lynch is an understanding and encouraging director.

“Working with Jen is a dream come true,” says French Stewart. “She loves the actors. She cares about everybody; makes everybody feel like they are the only person who could possibly do their job. That translates into confidence and a camaraderie you don’t get all the time.”

Just as it takes a pooling of perspectives to try to get to the truth of what happened in the film, it also takes the collective perspectives of the cast and crew to get to the heart of Surveillance itself.

“At its core,” explains Lynch, “I’m fascinated by the idea of what it is that an individual sees. Primarily, what it is to have your life and to see something specifically through your eyes. It’s a completely different experience than anyone else.”

Surveillance releases in select theaters June 26.