Talking with Director, and Actor Ariel Hansen [Women in Horror Month 2021]

Photo Credit: Veronica Bonderud

For Women in Horror Month 2021 I talk with Ariel Hansen, an in demand filmmaker out of Canada who is obsessed with horror and recently released her short “Clout.” She discusses her process and what drew her to horror, filmmaking, and more within the genre.

Please introduce yourself a little:
Hi, I’m Ariel Hansen, I’m a Canadian actor (both on screen and in the voice booth), director and writer with a passion for the eerie, macabre and downright weird.

What is it that attracts you to the horror genre for your chosen field of creative work?
Growing up I was always attracted to stories that where there was more going on in the world than what the average person sees, be it magic, monsters or secret science. For some reason though I was always drawn to the darker versions of these stories, maybe it was from growing up a tomboy in the times of XTREME children’s programming or maybe I’ve always been a little cynical, thinking if there was more to the world than meets the eye it would undoubtedly be at least somewhat nefarious in nature.

Who inspires you in your work and in life?
I have definitely drawn a lot of inspiration from directors who bring a sense of fun to their horror & genre films like John Carpenter and Simon Barrett, but lately the works of directors like Karyn Kusama and Gigi Saul Guerrero have really been getting my brain juices flowing.

Women in horror have made great strides, but it’s clear that a lot of work is still needed to make it a most inclusive genre. To you, what is the importance of a movement like Women in Horror Month?
Women in Horror Month is important to me because it really helps to highlight all the awesome women behind the camera and behind the scenes of both horror classics and modern horrors who might otherwise go under the radar the rest of the year without the space being made for them to be talked about. As well, it’s great to learn about women making horror outside of the film industry since there are so many other ways people tell stories or express their love for horror.

What would you tell an up-and-coming creative in the world of horror who sees that being a woman/identifying as a women as something that makes it so much more difficult at times?
If you can find a support network in your given field who are rooting for you and you can trust that’s really going to help both in making your work and helping you to get through any tough times ahead.

What are your favorite bits of helpful advice that you have received about your work or your field?
The best advice I’ve probably received is that this career is a marathon, not a sprint. It might take a while, but if you keep at it you will make progress even if it’s not as fast as you’d like it to.

In honor of celebrating Women in Horror Month, who do you believe viewers should keep an eye on in terms of the creative ladies in horror?
This is always such a hard question since there’s so many women out there making good work, but I always have to shout out my fellow British Columbians like Gigi Saul Guerrero, Tristan Risk, Rami Kahlon and Sharai Rewels just to name a few. In fact if your readers are interested in learning about a bunch of badass women in the BC horror scene keep an eye out for the feature doc Vancouver Video Vixens on the festival circuit which was made by Becca.

What do you have coming soon that you can talk to us about?
Aside from my short film, Clout, which is currently doing the festival circuit, I have two more shorts in pre-production. The first one is one that I wrote and will be both directing and acting in called Damned Supper. The other one is a period thriller that I’m producing and acting in.

Where can potential fans follow your work!
Personal:
Instagram – www.instagram.com/hansenshorror/
Facebook – www.facebook.com/HansensHorror
Twitter – twitter.com/HansensHorror

Production Company (Bad Cookie Pictures):
Youtube (where you can find several of my short films) – www.youtube.com/channel/UCT7h6tWR3j9PO8Z0KQeaS4A
Instagram – www.instagram.com/badcookiepictures/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/BadCookiePictures/