“Cat Person” director Susanna Fogel discussed the thriller’s themes of modern dating and consent with stars Emilia Jones and Nicholas Braun at Variety Sundance Studio presented by Audible.

“Cat Person” depicts the tumultuous romance between Margot, an arthouse theater employee and college student, and older theater-frequenter Robert. Cross-counter flirting turns into texting, and their relationship eventually unravels as awkward moments, discomfort and red flags surface.

“It answers the core questions and contradictions and complexities of the issue around consent,” Jones said.

Inspired by Kristen Roupenian’s viral New Yorker article of the same title, the film illustrates a provocative image of modern dating as it explores power dynamics, gray areas of consent and women’s relationships with themselves and their partners.

“The dread increases and then builds to a horrifying climax,” Fogel said, reflecting on her choice to adapt the fiction piece as a thriller. “There’s a lot of projection and fear that goes into that [modern dating], and for women in particular…The idea was to manifest that in an anxious, uncomfortable, suspenseful flash.”

Fogel, who co-wrote “Booksmart,” recently completed “Winner” and is in post-production on limited series “A Small Light” for National Geographic and Disney+.

Jones’ work includes “C0DA,” “Brimstone,” “Youth,” “High-Rise” and Fogel’s upcomming “Winner.” Emmy-nominated Nicholas Braun’s portfolio includes “Succession,” “Sky High,” “How to Be Single” and “The Perks of Being a Wallflower.”

In addition to Fogel, “Cat Person” was executively produced by Daniel Hank, Gino Falsetto, Ashford, Anna Marsh, Shana Eddy-Grouf, Rachel Henochsberg, Elizabeth Banks and Max Handelman, with Helen Estabrook and Jeremy Steckler producing.

“Cat Person” premiered Jan. 21 at Sundance.