Q&A with Jovanka Vuckovic, Director of “The Guest”

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Name a Horror character you relate to on a spiritual level? Who is your Horror spirit animal?
Ellen Ripley. Because she gave no fucks and took no shit.

You’ve gotta go through some bad ideas to get to the good ones. Tell us one of your bad ideas. How do you get past the bad ones to find your spark?
Perhaps this concept is relative because there are plenty of successful movies that people have judged as bad ideas. A friend of mine has an idea for a movie about a bunch of teenagers trapped in a mall with a tiger, which I think is preposterous. But you never know. It’s all in the execution. I try to write from my heart and my gut and let that guide me in the hopes that it will result in something original.

Do you consider yourself part of a horror community?
As I always say: when it comes to horror, I feel like Lt. Ripley in Alien3 when she says, “You’ve been in my life so long, I can’t remember anything else.” Horror has come to define me and I do love seeing old friends at events, but I mostly work in isolation.

When you’re building the world of your film, where do you look for inspiration?
Inspiration is where you find it. Visual style depends on the story, which sometimes dictates quite cleary what the film should look like. A story like THE BOX for example can’t be told with a handheld, frenetic camera when it is quite literally about a character that is confined and walled up. The narrative tells you it will need restraint. All other choices would be incongruous with story. For other films: fine art, music, dance and even nature documentaries have served as inspiration.

What would you do if you woke up inside of your film?
Start drinking. Because it’s not going to end well.

Who would be on your ultimate horror villain squad?
I just need one character: The Thing. Because it can be anyone at any time, anywhere. And you can’t kill it.

Lightning round: Freddy or Jason? Stephen King or H.P. Lovecraft? Practical or CGI? Post Apocalypse or Pre Apocalypse?
Jason. Lovecraft. Duh, Practical! Pre Apocalypse (because suspense about what might happen is far more frightening than what already happened.)

And finally, Ghostface would like to know ‘What’s your favourite scary movie?’
The Thing (1982).