December 06, 2021
The British director’s debut film, Censor, has won awards and plaudits, and attracted new fans to the genre. The key to good horror, she says, is characterMurray Bartlett: ‘Filming The White Lotus in lockdown felt like a TV summer camp’ See the Observer’s Faces of 2021 in fullThis time last year, writer-director Prano Bailey-Bond was finishing work on her feature Censor and looking forward to 2021. Her unnerving film about horror – rather than a horror film per se – had been invited to the Sundance film festival. But then Covid restrictions stopped her attending. “Normally,” she says, “you’d get to go to the premiere of your debut feature. I slept through mine because it was on in the middle of the night on the other side of the world.”
Film-maker Prano Bailey-Bond: ‘People think horror is just exploding heads’
Since then, however, she has been able to bask in the film’s glory. Released in the UK in August, Censor has earned her serious plaudits, including the Screen FrightFest genre rising star award and being included in Variety magazine’s list of directors to watch. When we spoke last week, Bailey-Bond was a few days away from attending tonight’s Bifas (British independent film awards), where Censor has nominations in nine categories including debut director and debut screenwriter.
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