Filmmaker Q&A Jill Gevargizian

by Phillip Wilcox "Our Movie Demon"

Comment

DCP:
The Stylist is one of my favorite short films up to this point! It has such a deep and complex story. Where did that story stem from?

 

JG:
It started from a very simple concept- I thought there should be a horror film about a killer hairstylist.  The first thing I pictured was a girl in a room full of her "trophies".  I imagined her wearing them and dancing around.  I thought of her much like Leatherface, May, Maniac, Henry- and realized all those characters and films have the similar effect on the viewer.  They are all show us a different side of a villain and try to get us to understand why they do what they do.  Rather than being scared of them, I feel sad for them.  That was my goal.

 

DCP:
The character of Claire is one of the most compelling ones I've seen on screen for a short film - Who exactly is Claire to you and how did you come to cast the talented Najarra Townsend?

 

JG:
I am attracted to characters like Claire because they are so confrontational.  The type of characters who do questionable-to-horrible things, yet we still somehow feel sorry for them.  

Najarra is a dream!  She made Claire so much more than I could have ever imagined.  I met her through fellow filmmaker Eric England (Contracted).  I've screened all of Eric's work in Kansas City at my screening series, Slaughter Movie House.  He's had my back in return.  I sent him the script, asked if he though she'd be into it, and the rest is history!

 

DCP:
What was one of the most exciting and/or challenging parts about making The Stylist?

 

JG:
Oh!  Where to begin?!  This was only my second project as a director and a huge step from the first.  Our special effects, by the talented Colleen May, was a very intense thing to pull off (trying to not spoil it by discussing details).  It took weeks of preproduction, hours of makeup application, and entire day of shooting to accomplish.  We are all very proud of the outcome.  And along with that- the sound effects for those gory moments proved to be quite a challenge.  But thanks to our passionate sound designer Joe Meglio we got there.  A woman who attended our premiere in LA came up to me after the screening, told me she was a nurse and that our special effect gag was as true to real life as she had ever seen.  That was pretty rad to hear.

 

DCP:
Do you have any go-to films that have influenced your work as a filmmaker?

 

JG:
I Saw the Devil, May, Se7en, Zodiac, No Country for Old Men, American Psycho, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, Candyman, Romeo + Juliet, Goodfellas, Maniac

 

DCP:
What are some lessons that you carry with you when making each film?

 

JG:
To be more confident in my decisions.  I think all filmmakers ask for input and we receive all kinds of conflicting advice.  Ultimately, one must pull the trigger and believe in that choice enough that you'll stand up for it.

 

DCP:
Can you share with us any upcoming projects you may be working in the near future?

 

JG:
I am contributing to the Soska's annual Blood Drive PSA for my third year in a row.  That releases online February 1, in conjunction with Women in Horror Month.  I am also in preproduction to direct another music video for the band Jaenki.  That is all I can speak on for now.  Check out all my work on my site: www.SixxTape.com.

 

Link to watch The Stylist on Shudder: https://www.shudder.com/watch/the-stylist/2728785/1

 

Find me on Social Media: @JillSixx, @SixxTape, @TheStylistFilm

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