Drew Denny is an award-winning filmmaker who has collaborated with stars such as Chloë Grace Moretz, Gabourey Sidibe, and Ashley Graham.
In this chat with Close-up Culture’s James Prestridge, Drew talks about teaming up with Brianna Hildebrand (Deadpool) and Amanda Plummer (Pulp Fiction) for her visually engrossing short film, Momster.
Q: ‘Momster’ seems like a thrilling short film. Can you tell us about it and the mother-daughter relationship at the heart of it?
A: I was caring for my mom, who struggles with early onset dementia, when I wondered what would happen if, rather than shopping for groceries, if we were in the midst of robbing a bank.
Q: I think it says a lot about yourself and your vision for the film that you got talents of Brianna Hildebrand and Amanda Plummer’s calibre involved. What was it like having them on board?
A: Working with Brianna and Amanda was an actual dream come true. They are both so talented and smart and hard-working, truly inspiring people to collaborate with… I couldn’t be more grateful and thrilled that they chose to participate in this project.
Q: I’ve only seen the teaser, but the neon-lit visuals for the film look incredible. Can you talk about your collaboration with cinematographer Ava Berkofsky?
A: Thanks, I’m so glad you like the look! Ava and I have collaborated a few times but this was the first chance we got to really create a world together. She’s so fun to work with because she’s down to get weird with me, to really dive into a space even when that means navigating a literal hall of mirrors, and to take the time to make each shot as compelling as it can be… and her team was amazing, too.
I saw that our production designer, Ashley Fenton, had found this little neon heart that could light up remotely, and then day of came up with a concept around the neon heart turning on and a soft golden glow washing over our protagonist and her crush the moment they first touch. Ava, our gaffer and the whole team sprang into action and made it happen, which was not easy!
Q: Do you have plans for turn ‘Momster’ into a feature? If so, what would you explore further?
A: Yes! Angel and the Momster team up as a mother daughter bank robbing team in the feature – they’re a hilarious badass duo rife with all the tensions of an estranged mother-daughter relationship- in order to rescue Angel’s crush and take revenge on the Momster’s arch enemy.
Q: What does it mean to you to be involved in Tribeca Pride?
A: As an out lesbian filmmaker, I am always so honoured to be representing LGBTQ community in cinema and am truly grateful to Tribeca for creating a space to recognise films that move the needle on LGBTQ inclusion.
Q: What is next for you?
A: I’m pitching the Momster adaptation while in production on my first podcast, Asking For It, which I also hope to adapt for film or TV.