Jen and Sylvia Soska horror directors of twisted twins productions
Do you find it difficult to work in a male dominated genre and industry?

Sylvia: Yes and no. Most of the people I have met in the industry are incredibly welcoming and supportive. I’ve had the honour of meeting many of my heroes in the genre and they want women telling their stories – it’s not as much of a male/female focus as much as what story are you telling, how do you tell it, and is it something unique. There are more female horror fans than men, which many people find strange, but I think it’s because relating to the final girl in horror films is a lot more healthy and empowering than watching romantic comedies which more often than not preach ‘find a rich man who will accept you and life will be perfect.’ That’s bullshit. All that said, I’ve dealt with some fucking assholes who think my age and gender is something to base an opinion on rather than the merit of my work. You have to feel sorry for people like that. Always be careful about who you work with because a bad partner will make you work five times harder than a good, supportive partner.

Jen: I agree. There’s been a lot of good with some bad. The whole “boys club thing” certainly doesn’t apply to fellow directors. I love meeting other directors. Getting to sit down and swap war stories and ask “that one thing in whatever scene, how the hell did you pull it off?” or asking what they went through to get their film made and to tell their story. It’s an incredible support system. I’ve never got any attitude off a male director. Well, maybe just one, but I’m told he’s a douche bag to everyone, ha ha. There are so many people in this business hungry for new talent and new ways of promoting and getting your work out there, it’s a very exciting time. I hate to admit that Sylvia and I have dealt with some true assholes that judge us by our gender and age regardless of our work and our ability. You do have to remember that there are a lot of failed film-makers out there and they ultimately end up settling in other positions and are bitter as hell and even incapable of admitting their own failures and short comings. The last thing they want to see is a pair of young women who are doing what they feel entitled to and also that won’t put up with being called “sweet heart”, “honey”, or “kid” nor tolerate their sexist remarks or advances. But there are monsters like that in every industry. You can’t let that dissuade you. You cannot tolerate it, though, because it makes you part of the problem. I’ve had women tell me “that’s just the way it is, you have to get used to it.” I can’t stand it.

Take us through the various stages of conceptualization. What’s your creative process like?

Sylvia: It’s great because I was born with a writing partner. Jen and I start shooting ideas back and forth. We’re sisters and Hungarian, which means we’ll rip each others ideas to shreds without any empathy – which works because that’s what your audience will do too. The concept has to be something that is important to us because a film stays with you for years, even through your whole life, it has to mean something to you. After the idea phase, we’ll have developed a basic story outline and characters, then we take a sheet of paper and break it up into a three act structure with all the key scenes and elements. We fill that out into a full story, pick scenes to write, then one of us plays video games while the other writes – we swap out, we write to entertain the other, we go over what’s been written. I love the creating process because there you have infinite control and the vision of what you want to create without any concessions.

Jen: It’s outstanding to have been born with a best friend, a business partner, and co-creator. We have a life time of experiences together and we draw on that for our work. We also pull inspiration from graphic novels and video games as well as books, TV, and films so there’s a lot we have to pull from. And we’ve shared it all together. Our character creation is very real to us. Our characters take on their own lives and they have to because if they’re not real to us, how can we hope that they’ll be real to our audiences. We put a lot of thought into, “would he say this or do that?” If he was in this or that situation what would he do. What would he want to do and what would he never do. It’s amazing to be able to create something from nothing.

HN Next Page

 

Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6

Tags: , , , ,