Friday, February 21, 2014

Interview with Amy Hesketh.

Full Name:
Amy Hesketh

Do you have a nickname or what do your friends call you?
Well “Amy” is pretty short.  Three letters, two syllables.  Doesn’t really lend itself to abbreviation.

Rural Maine, USA

Current hometown:
La Paz, Bolivia
How did you get from Maine to Bolivia?
That’s a pretty long story, but to make it short.  I lived in France for a while, then came back to the US, then went to Bolivia as a tourist, was cast in a docudrama for National Geographic that was produced by Jac Avila.
I saw his film Martyr in a film festival down here around the same time.  He held a talk about low-budget digital filmmaking at that festival.  So, I felt inspired to stay here and collaborate with him.  We formed a production company together, and have made several films.
It was a leap of faith, in a way. I think Jac thought I was a crazy person at first.  Apparently it’s not normal to visit an exotic country, see a film, and then propose to form a company to make whacky, controversial films.  And then actually do that.
Well, it is a bit unusual as most people would probably opine.
I suppose so.  I’m normally a very pragmatic person, but sometimes you just have to take a risk.  Especially in pursuing your dreams.

Favorite city and why?
Paris. I spent some great times there, and lived there for a few years.  I also love La Paz, though, as I’ve lived here for 8 years now, and am always inspired by it, every day.

Birthday / Age:
May 3rd, the day that Bram Stoker’s Dracula opens.

How would you describe yourself physically?
Somewhat athletic. Petite.

How would someone else describe you physically?
I’ve been described as a “girl next door” type.  I don’t have tattoos and such.  People have told me that I have an impression of innocence, until I open my mouth.
What happens when you open your mouth?
My internal censor is broken most of the time, so I swear a lot, and say really inappropriate things.  I try not to, but I have a compulsion to speak my mind all of the time, regardless of the trouble it gets me into with others.  I’m not into small-talk.  I’ve also nearly been arrested several times.  That’s when the innocent look comes in handy… if I can keep my mouth shut.

The first thing people notice about you is…
People have told me I’m a bit “robotic”.
Are you a robot?

Hair Color / Eye Color / Race?
Brown, brown, Nordic/English.

Sexual orientation?
Human beings.

Religion, if any?

Are you superstitious at all? Any phobias?
I’m not a fan of having spiders on my person.  I find superstitions illogical.  However, I don’t celebrate anything about a film until it’s done, even though that’s illogical.
Sounds perfectly logical to me.  Are you Vulcan?
Are there Vulcan robots?
If I had to be labeled, Vulcan Robot would be my top choice.

Do you smoke / drink?  If so, what?
I have a couple of beers on occasion.  My favorite is a good IPA.  I also like scotch, and dry martinis.  I do not smoke. 

Any bad habits?
I talk to myself.  But I don’t think that’s bad, necessarily.
It’s really not.  Most intelligent people do.  People ask me if I’m ever bored when doing something boring and I always reply, “I have a very active mental lifestyle.”
Nice!  I’m never bored.  But it’s also difficult to turn my brain off sometimes, especially when I want to sleep.
I share the same problem.  That’s why I don’t sleep much.  I’d rather use the time working on things.  When my body wants sleep, it falls asleep.
Yes, right?!  I tend to be very productive when I should be sleeping.  I have creative epiphanies when I’m lying awake at night, or in the shower.

Current occupation / Dream job:
I’m a filmmaker.

What do you like to do when you’re not at work?
I pretty much work all the time, but on the rare occasion I’m not, I enjoy reading, seeing friends, listening to music, cooking and baking, traveling, and walking while letting my mind wander, idea gathering.

What is your zombie outbreak survival plan?
If I were at my house in Maine, I would be all set.  I’d get right down to killing zombies, and saving my friends and neighbors.  Maybe bake some bread, when I’m not killing zombies.
The house where I live in Bolivia is pretty much zombie-proof as well. For some reason all of the outer doors are lined with steel plates.
Is that a common thing in Bolivia?
Not that I’m aware of.  Whoever built the house was obviously a zombie-phobe. Perfectly rational.

Weapon of choice:
For zombie killing, a Glock 357.  They don’t have too much kick-back, unlike a Detonics 949.

Do you have any special skills?
I can fix cars and motorcycles, build things, weld.  I’m the person everyone else calls when they need something done around their house.  I can accurately fire a weapon, I grew up doing that a lot, being from a rural area.  I can cook, and bake.  These skills might also come in handy in the zombie apocalypse.
They very well might at that.

Did you go to college and, if so, what for?
I went to college for Fine Arts, Art History, Photography, and Mathematics.

If you went to college, did you manage to pay off your student loans?
Yes, recently.  That was nice.

Any pets?   If so, what are they and what are their names?
I recently found a kitten in my garden, which I named Mitsou, after the Balthus drawings.

What is your favorite animal?
Why the mongoose?
Their risk-taking in pursuit of what they want most; tasty snakes.

Speaking of pets, any pet peeves?
A guy in a truck recently backed into me while I was crossing the street, in a crosswalk.  He was driving in reverse the wrong way down a one way street.  So you could say I have a pet peeve for bad drivers.  And jerks.

Favorite / Least favorite Food:
I love pickled herring, and molasses cookies (not together).  I dislike tripe.

What is your favorite quotation/motto/saying?
"If I satiate my desires, I sin but I deliver myself from them; if I refuse to satisfy them, they infect the whole soul." Jean-Paul Sartre
Love myself some Sartre.

What is the best thing that ever happened to you?
Realizing my dream as a filmmaker.

What is the worst thing that ever happened to you?
My father getting sick, and dying of Pick’s disease.  I had to do a lot of things, on my own (I’m an only child), to take care of him and see to his needs.  And watch him quickly decline, over two years, into a vegetable.

Ever had your heart broken?  Is there a story worth telling behind your answer? Yes.  There are so many ways that another person can break your heart.

Ever broken someone’s heart? Is there a story worth telling behind your answer?
I’ve managed to remain friends with most of my exes, which is very cool.  I think when you make a connection with someone like that, and you love them, it shouldn’t be thrown away just because it didn’t work out for some reason.

What is the best thing you’ve ever done?
Make films.

What is the worst thing you’ve ever done?
I’ve never done anything that I’m particularly ashamed of, or that I regret.  It’s all part of the process.

If you could kill one person, consequence free, who would it be and why?
The guy who backed into me with his truck. But I’m really a pacifist.

What do you do?
I make controversial, sexy films.
Those tend to be my favorite kinds of films.

How did you get started doing what you do?
I began writing my first script back in 2001.  Later on, in 2005 I met my (now) business partner Jac Avila at a film festival in Oruro, Bolivia, where he was showing his film, Martyr.  I liked his film a lot, and we’ve been collaborating ever since.

What is your advice to other people that want to get started doing what you do? Jump in and do it, you really have nothing to lose. Make it happen, be creative. Creativity counts more than money.

What are some of the projects you’ve worked on/finished in the past?
Give us a little history if you will.
Sirwiñakuy (2010) (director, actress)
The Spectres of Blood Castle (no release date) (producer, actress)
Maleficarum (2011) (producer, actress)
Barbazul (2012) (director, actress)
Le Marquis de la Croix (2013) (director, actress)
Dead But Dreaming (2013) (producer, actress)
Olalla (in production) (director, actress)

What projects are you working on now?
My feature film that we’re shooting now is called Olalla, based on the Robert Louis Stevenson story, about an incestuous family of vampires.
I’m directing a horror short as well, and finishing two scripts for two other features.

What are you watching?
Mad Men. I find Nihilism comforting.
American Horror Story: Asylum. Sick, nice.

What are you listening to?
The new album by Ulver: Messe.
Ooh!  A fellow Ulver fan!  We’re a rare breed.
Have you ever checked out Lustmord or Bohren & Der Club Of Gore?
Yes, good stuff!  I also love Sleepytime Gorilla Museum.
Downloading their stuff to check it out now.

What are you reading?
I’m working my way through C. Dean Andersson’s awesome books right now.  As well as some research for other films .

Favorite author / book?
I can’t commit to one.

Favorite band / song?
Again, can’t commit to just one.

Least favorite band / song?
Anything repetitive, with uninspiring percussion.

Desert Island Music/Movies/Books: You know the deal. Five of each.
Ulver, Agalloch, Can, Alfred Schnittke, Frank Sinatra
Movies: The Night Porter, Possession, Belle de Jour, La Dolce Vita, Edipo Re
Books: Gordon (Templeton), Pale Fire (Nabokov), Ada (Nabokov), Buddenbrooks (Mann), A Moveable Feast (Hemingway)

If you could do anything other than what you do now, what would you do?
Travel in space.
Like an astronaut?  Or like The Silver Surfer?
Silver Surfer. Imagine being surrounded by a vacuum and not dying!

Who would you want to meet that you haven’t met? You get three choices:
Alive. Dead. Fictional.
I hope to only meet people who are alive.  Anyone who is alive is great.  But if it has to be a dead person, Nikola Tesla.  If I met a fictional person it might mean that I’ve completely lost my mind, so I hope that doesn’t happen.

What’s the best and worst job you’ve ever had?
My best “job” was when I worked for an old lady one summer when I was 15.  She would make me read raunchy romance novels to her out loud, sex bits and all.
Oh my…
Worst job was pretty much anything where I had to sit at a desk and do something banal.

Anyone you recommend I interview that you can put me in touch with?
Jac Avila, he’s on FB.
Cool I found him and sent him a Friend Request.

Thanks for letting me subject you to being interviewed!Thank you very much for the interview!

Pitch parade:
Give me all of your links for things you want to promote.   All of them.
My Facebook:
FB Olalla:
FB Barbazul:
FB Sirwiñakuy:
FB Le Marquis de la Croix:
FB Dead But Dreaming:
FB Maleficarum:
Websites: ,

About the Interviewee:
Described by Fangoria Magazine as the “female Jess Franco”, Amy Hesketh is an award winning director, actress, writer and producer, known for her controversial films, and equally groundbreaking acting roles.
Reactions to her work are a polemic of extremes, ranging from the positive (“a visual genius” and “daring”) to the negative (“inhabits the last circle of hell”).  Her first film played theatrically in Bolivia to packed houses for five straight months.
Originally from rural Maine, she currently lives in Bolivia.

About the Interviewer:
Scott Lefebvre can write about whatever you want him to write about.
Mostly because when he was grounded for his outlandish behavior as a hyperactive school child, the only place he was allowed to go was the public library.
His literary tastes were forged by the works of Helen Hoke, Alvin Schwartz and Stephen Gammell, Ray Bradbury, Richard Matheson, Stephen King, Clive Barker, Edgar Allan Poe, and H. P. Lovecraft.
He is the author of Spooky Creepy Long Island, and a contributing author to Forrest J. Ackerman’s Anthology of the Living Dead, Fracas: A Collection of Short Friction, The Call of Lovecraft, and Cashiers du Cinemart.
He is currently working on ten novel-length book projects which will be released in 2014.
He also publishes themed collections of interviews from his interview blog You Are Entitled To My Opinion.
His reviews have been published by a variety of in print and online media including Scars Magazine, Icons of Fright, Fatally Yours and Screams of Terror, and he has appeared in Fangoria, Rue Morgue and HorrorHound Magazine.
He is the Assistant Program Director for The Arkham Film Society and produces electronic music under the names Master Control and LOVECRAFTWORK.
He is currently working on a novel-length expansion of a short-story titled, "The End Of The World Is Nigh", a crowd-funded, crowd-sourced, post-apocalyptic, zombie epidemic project.
Check out the blog for the book here:
Check out the Facebook Fan Page for the project here:
Check his author profile at:
Follow him at GoodReads here:
Check out his publishing imprint Burnt Offerings Books here:
And here:
Check out his electronic music here:
And here:
Check out his videos at:
Check out his IMDB profile here:
Follow his Twitter here: or @TheLefebvre
Follow his Tumblr here:
Check out his Etsy here:
Join the group for The Arkham Film Society here:
Stalk his Facebook at:
E-mail him at:

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