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Tag: women in horror month


#152: Not Just A Black Vampire Movie--Graveyard Shift Sisters Joins Me to Talk Ganja and Hess

ganja and hess posterIn 1973, African American director Bill Gunn was tasked with making the next Blacula. Instead, he gifted the world with the strangest rumination on identity, addiction, and religion that we are just beginning to appreciate. Starring Duane Jones, who gave a revolutionary performance in George A. Romero's NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD, and the magnetic Marelene Clark, who demand attention from every frame of celluloid, GANJA AND HESS manages to subvert every convention, every rule, and every expectation that audiences had for not only horror films, but for black cinema and the depiction of black people on the big screen.

After about a week of screenings in 1973, the producers pulled the film, chopped almost 40 minutes from its running time, attempted to reshape it into a more standard exploitation film, and threw their new amalgamation onto the Drive-in circuit with Bill Gunn's name removed from the credits.

Gunn's original vision wasn't realized again until almost a decade after his death when it was reassembled in 1998 for a special DVD release. To this day, GANJA AND HESS remains an elusive and fascinating cinematic experience that can only be full understood with full immersion. We are bringing this film to the big screen at The Museum of Photographic Arts on February 20th of this year and sincerely hope to introduce some new eyes to a rare opportunity have that immersion.

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Joining me on this episode to discuss the film, its cultural importance, and our attempts to understand our own, sometimes differing takeaways from its esoteric structure, is Ashlee Blackwell. Ashlee is the founder of a great horror blog called Graveyard Shift Sisters, which examines the presence and representation of women of color in horror--on screen and on the page. What follows is a fascinating conversation that was sometimes difficult to have because GANJA AND HESS is just so damn strange and interesting. I hope you enjoy our spoiler-free discussion and, if you are near San Diego, hope you join me to view the film on a big screen with full surround sound the way film was meant to be seen!

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#151: Director Pablo Absento and her "Shi"

talk wit pabloPablo Absento showed her atmospheric horror short film Shi at the 2015 Horrible Imaginings Film Festival, as well as film festivals all over the world, and that got the notice of none other than Fangoria. Now, all of you can watch this film and see what all the buzz is about in 8 terrifying minutes because Fangoria is hosting the full film on their website for free!
If you want to watch it before listening to this episodes, spend eight minutes here (don't forget to click "subscribe" while you are there):

In this episode, Pablo and I talk (and sometimes get hilariously derailed with):

1. how my car helped her get her first experience in an American ER
2. Dennys
3. Experiencing Horrible Imaginings Film Festival
4. Getting "Shi" on Fangoria
5. Mixing personal experiences with folklore for storytelling inspiration
6. Indie filmmaking and some of the trials of getting seen
7. Too many laughs with a good friend
Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Youtube!
me and pablo

Listen to the Episode HERE:

July 28, 2015 Posted by admin in General

2015 Horrible Imaginings Short Film: Letting!


Country of Origin: USA

In the middle of the night a little girl awakens to discover the doll she fell asleep with has disappeared, but what she finds next is terrifying.

"Letting" will be featured during the "Child's Nightmares" Short Film Block, starting at 5:00pm on Friday, September 11th!

Part of Horrible Imaginings Horror Film Festival of San Diego's full line-up! Get Full Festival Passes or single screening tickets HERE!


Charlee Steele
Travis Steele
Circus of the Dead, Blood Reunion 3: Hunters
Tiffani Brooke Fest
Circus of the Dead, CSI: NY

Director Bio: Hannah "Neurotica" Forman is the founder of Ax Wound, the worlds first known feminist horror publication. In 2010, Neurotica founded the internationally recognized and award-winning grassroots movement, Women In Horror Month (WiHM). Every February she works with Jen Soska and Sylvia Soska of Twisted Twins Productions on a Massive Blood Drive campaign and PSA.

Her work/writing has appeared in Newsweek, The Guardian, Rue Morgue, Fangoria, and other notable publications. Currently Neurotica is in pre-production on her first feature.


Meet the Women Filmmakers from Our Women in Horror Event!

Female Filmmakers in the Horror Genre!

All will be featured on Saturday, February 11th at the 10th Avenue Theatre in San Diego!

L. Whyte is a masked vigilante and crime fighter whose mild-mannered alter-ego is an artist and animator based in Dundee, Scotland. When she isn't tackling the forces of evil she can occasionally be found teaching 2D animation at Dundee College, making short films, and writing mildly amusing but largely falsified biographies on application forms. Her stop motion animated short "Nursery Crimes" will screen at Horrible Imaginings's Women in Horror Event.

Gigi Romero, born in Venezuela, arrived in Spain in 2000 where she obtained a degree in media communication with a specialization in film direction. Since then, she's been working in the production area for various publicity and music videos shootings. In 2006 she directs her first short film "Smile" and in 2009 "Together" selected at festivals around the world. She is now working on the post production of her first Venezuelan short "Nada" ("Nothing"). She has also written and directed "Logico" ("Logical") and "Cosas que Pasan" ("Things that Happen"). Her last work "Se Acabo La Fiesta" (The Party is Over) was shot for an internet film festival, being one of the finalists. Gigi resides between Caracas and Madrid.

Since meeting in Nashville, TN at Watkins Film School and having a mutual love of horror, Mary Katherine Sisco and Doug Mallette have collaborated on nearly a dozen short films of questionable taste. Their film “Beatiful as you Are,” written, produced, and edited in 48 hours, with Mary Katherine as producer and Doug as director, has had the good fortune to travel festivals around the country and won the award for Best Storyline at the Viscera 2010 Premiere.

Paula Haifley attended Loyola Marymount University’s film program, where she was the only student to make a thesis film featuring a disemboweling. Her short film “Movie Monster Insurance” screened at the Viscera 2010 Premiere and has won acclaim at film festivals and from zombie lovers everywhere. Her addiction to horror started when, as a child, her teenaged cousins shower her Michael Jackson’s Thriller. They made her cover her eyes during the werewolf scenes, but she watched all the zombie parts and really liked them.

Jen Moss works as a successful music supervisor for a major record label but her true passion has always been film. Her first self-funded, no budget short, Dumped, was well received as an online showcase for her writing and directing potential. Jen has since undertaken several directing courses with renowned independent film school Raindance and is now ready to embrace the challenge of creating higher production value films. With her sophomore effort The Morning After starring UK pop star Kate Nash, Jen has had her film premiere at the Vue West End for the Frightfest All Nighter as well as win Best Film at the Rotoreliefs Halloween Short Film Showcase.

Lisa Coffelt, horror director and editor by nature, she also put together a cookbook called "Have A Heart For Horror". Born and raised in Kentucky, she ventured off to the big city of LA to continue her passion of filmmaking. Her newest release "Internal Thoughts" shares a much deeper and horrific side as it relates to her own personal experiences. This film was co-directed with her awesome accomplice, Cristyn "Crizzle" Wingood. Cristyn Wingood is a new-ish member of the Crimson Stained Lace family and has helped to produce a couple of films to date. But "Internal Thoughts" was her first deviation into co-directing. These ladies look forward to creating a lot more ghoulish films in the future.

Filmmaker Susan Bell loves scaring people. She's directed multiple short films, including THE PATCHWORK MONKEY, THE RESURRCTIONIST and THE BOARDER. Under the banner of Charon Pictures Inc., she is currently producing a project involving the Los Angeles Ghost Patrols reality TV pilot footage. In addition, for the past five years she has worked as a producer and project manager on several animated TV shows including the Emmy-winning ROBOT CHICKEN.

Born in 1982 in Castelo Branco (Portugal), Ana Almeida majored in Sound and Image at the School of Arts of the Oporto Catholic School. Academically, she directed the short film For Five Minutes It Was Impossible to Breathe, adaptation of a Stephen King horror story and produced Uma Quest„o de Sangue, a black comedy showed in the Fantasporto Film Festival. "A Noiva (The Bride)" was her first work as a director in an independent Project. She has worked extensively as a TV Editor and Chief of Production. In 2010, she created the film production Anexo 82 where she produced and edited two shorts films - O Risco (The Line) and Temperar a Gosto (Season at Taste). In 2011, she will return to the directors chair adapting her awarded script Videoclube.

As a young woman lost, but with a Bachelors Degree in Theater Arts, Ashleigh Nichols knew she had to get out of table waiting, so she started PAing. She then quickly realized that she needed to move up...and quickly. Through blood, sweat and yes, even tears she moved up. She has been Production Coordinating, Production Managing and even on the occasion, Producing. Her last film, The Last Lovecraft received distribution at Slamdance and is currently available on Netflix and in store. Realizing she had some creative juices flowing, she wrote/directed and produced "Summer of the Zombies" with her husband Eddie Beasley.

Johnna Troxell always liked horror movies and is self-taught in FX make-up. When her kids were young they always had their house decorated for Halloween, and always came up with crazy ideas making it the best house in the neighborhood. Troxell is still young to the film industry, getting her first taste of it in 2005. With no schooling or training, she and her husband jumped in with both feet, and it has been an uphill climb from there, but well worth it. Since then she has produced four shorts and one feature, with one feature in post-production. "Ambiguous Figure" was the first project that she wrote and directed without her husband, and she had a lot of fun doing it. Now she's back in school learning digital cinematography.

Melanie Light has been working professionally within the film industry since 2006. With a passion for horror, she has managed to keep herself within the realm of her favorite movies. She art directed the first Hammer Horror comeback Beyond the Rave.

Sonya Godwin is a South Korean born actress/writer/producer and San Diego local. She loves to incorporate humor in all her projects regardless of genre and if you can't laugh with her, you will definitely laugh at her. She wrote and produced "Candy Snatchers."

Reyna Young has been labeled by press as The Queen of Horror in the Bay Area. She was born and raised in San Francisco! She is currently working in independent horror as a director, producer, writer, model, actress, and horror host in her hometown.

Rebecca Lorenne has been directing and producing both films and theatre since she was a teenager. Originally from Chicago, she has a B.A. in Film/Video from Columbia College. Her work has been shown all over the world including at the Cannes, Halifax Atlantic, and Phoenix International Film Festivals. Recently, Becky has shifted her creative focus from documentary and drama to comedy and horror, which culminated in her latest short film, “Bugbaby” starring Mink Stole. In addition to directing and producing, Becky works as a Post-Production Supervisor on independent films as well as managing resources at the motion graphics company, Imaginary Forces.

Caroline du Potet is a French female director born in 1982. After film school in Paris, she co-wrote and co-directed six short films in different genres with her brother. THE THIRD EYE is the last one. They decided to continue working together for their first feature film and chose to make a horror/thriller film : IN THEIR SLEEP. At present, they are working on a new project for France, a "hitchcockian" thriller called TOTEM.

Director and Producer Heather Wixson can pinpoint where her love of the horror genre started exactly: at age three she saw AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON in the theater and was immediately hooked. After pursuing more mainstream writing opportunities, she joined the independent horror site TerrorTube in 2007, eventually being promoted to Content Editor in 2008 and in early 2009, Heather joined the ranks of contributors at, one of the premiere horror entertainment sites worldwide. As her profile in the horror internet realm began to grow, so did Heather’s desire to continue to support independent filmmaking in a producing capacity. In February 2010, Heather formed Final Girl Films LLC and served as producer on two short films by writer/director Bryan Ryan, THE GUEST and TRESPASSER, and is currently developing a supernatural feature film project with writer/director Mel House called SOON, A LIGHT ON. PAPER ROCK, SCISSORS is Heather's directorial debut and stars Aaron Pruner ("VR Troopers") and Corbett Tuck (INSIDIOUS).