Horror’s Scream Queens and Rising Talent: Six Questions for Pablo Absento
“An award-winning director, Pablo Absento grew up in Surrey, UK. 7 years ago she moved to Tokyo, Japan, where she made her first short film ‘Call My Name’, which won The Best Short Horror at The Germany After Dark Horror Festival in 2013. A year later Pablo released another J-horror short ‘SHI’, which became a festival favourite over 2015. After the film’s Internet official release on Fangoria, ‘SHI’ got a generous retweet by the master of horror Mr. Guillermo del Toro.
A passion for storytelling has inspired her to create another project, “Japanese Legends”, the first episode of which was successfully released last year. Pablo is going to bring dark Japanese folklore stories to life, showing them through her own perception as a foreigner living in Japan. Pablo has a Bachelor of Journalism and an M.A. in Television Directing and Screenwriting.”*
1. How did you get into the industry?
I love storytelling and actually started dreaming about making films a while ago. But sometimes people think that their dreams are too big and that they are something that can never happen. I was like that until some point. Didn’t believe I could make it. But later a lot of things changed, I started working on TV, got a degree in scriptwriting, helped some people make their shorts. That motivated me and I made my first short film, which won plenty awards. And that was the start!
2. What Scream Queen/Woman in Horror inspired you most?
I know Kathryn Bigelow hasn’t made many horror films, but she’s a very inspiring example of a female director. Also every time I attend a film festival or a horror convention, I meet more and more women in horror and this is a great thing! I have many female friends, who also make horror movies, and there’s a lot to learn from each of them!
3. What horror film hooked you on the genre and why?
I’ve always loved horrors and scary stories since I was a child. And one of the most memorable experiences is from the childhood. I think I was 4 when I saw “The Thing” for the first time on TV. The film impressed me hugely. There you can see that the stereotype “horrors are just to get scared and entertained” is a big lie. It is one of examples when a movie is so well made in all aspects that it gets under your skin.
4. When you are presented with a script or movie concept, what are the things that draw you to certain projects and away from others?
I mostly work on projects based on my own scripts. But speaking generally I really like a kind of films, where there is a message inside. I like films which teach you some lessons, make you think about some important things. I am not a fan of “entertainment for entertainment”. So I’d rather prefer something with a heavier content. Another essential point is how a project is visually potential.
5. The evolution of women in the genre continues to change almost daily, so what are your thoughts on how things have changed and what do you see coming for the current and future women of horror?
There are definitely more women in the industry now than before, and that’s a good tendency. Cause gender identity shouldn’t matter. If you are a good filmmaker/actor, you are a good filmmaker/actor, doesn’t matter if you are “male” or “female”. It’s still not like this for some people, but I hope those delimitations become history some day soon.
6. What are the next couple projects you are working on?
A lot of projects are lined up for this year. My team and I are developing a feature film, a TV-series and an anthology. Planning to shoot the feature first. It is a very interesting and unique idea with elements of suspense and human horror. We are about to make something new for the horror genre! Cant’s talk much about the details unfortunately, but hopefully the audience will see our works really soon for themselves!
Pablo Absento’s Links:
*Bio Courtesy of Pablo Absento