The New Zealand Film Commission’s one-off initiative, the Women’s Horror Short Film Fund, has named Hweiling Ow and Hash Perambalam each the recipients of $60,000 to make genre shorts. Ow and Perambalam’s submissions won from a field of 31, of which six were shortlisted.
Ow is currently completing work on her Google/YouTube-NZ On Air Skip Ahead show, Ao-terror-oa, which will roll out in September.
Ow is familiar on screen from several successful 48Hours titles and a number of recent web series, including Flat 3, Friday Night Bites and winner of the 2017 NZ Web Fest Best Web Series gong, AFK. Her submission for the NZFC fund is Vaspy, for which she has on board as producers the veteran of several genre features Andrew Beattie The Devil Dared Me To, How to Meet Girls from a Distance, Deathgasm and Rachel Jean (The Blue Rose, Word Up, Forensics NZ). Jean is also the producer for Damon Fepulea’i’s Daylight Robbery, which has just received NZFC support via the He Ara Plus scheme.
Perambalam’s Not Like Her, made during her Masters in Screen Production at Auckland Uni, was a finalist in NZ’s Best in 2015. Cinematographer, Grant McKinnon took the NZCS Allen Guilford Cinematography Award presented as part of the competition. Not Like Her was also a finalist at Show Me Shorts in 2015, took the runner-up gong at last year’s Uni Shorts in the Postgraduate Fiction category, and went one better at the Moas in February, winning Best Self-Funded Short.
Leela Meenon (Orphans & Kingdoms, short Ride and web series K Rd Stories) will produce Perambalam’s Women’s Horror short, The Rat King.
As well as the financial support, the filmmakers will be mentored during the production process. The Rat King and Vaspy are expected to go into production next year.