Mika Kenyah provides horror vines for Chiller TV, a horror cable channel, and currently partners with Crypt TV—Eli Roth’s horror production company online. Today’s spotlight with Kenyah will delve further into her world of horror entertainment, and what helps her brand stand apart.
I never had a problem with getting started. I kind of just throw myself into it. I think it’s hard to keep going. “What about babies/marriage/taking a 9 to 5 seriously”—there are a lot of life factors that come into play as you get older. Doing what you love is a lot harder—to keep doing it is harder than getting started. Even though it’s harder, when it’s something you’re supposed to do, you always seem to find yourself in a position where, “I’m doing this again! I’m gonna leave this alone and focus on a 9 to 5.” Then an opportunity comes out of the blue. If you’re meant to do it, it always finds you.
When inspiration is waning, when you feel creatively sapped, what do you do? How do you stay fresh?
I think it’s harder when you’re a creative person living in New York; you can’t afford to only focus on your art. That’s a drain. I try to make the time to collaborate with other artists, check out new movies to get inspiration, and support my friends in art shows. Just being around other artists and just vibing with them brings new life [to my creativity]. That extends to movies or people.
Why do you think there are so few women in filmmaking?
I think there are a lot of women in filmmaking. I know them; I work with them; they’re in school. I think the industry is very comfortable with the formula. Hollywood/the industry has a really hard time of accepting new things and understanding a new audience. They just hold on with what already works with them. Women making films or leading movies that aren’t rom coms do work and will sell. It just will take women to keep pushing for that change—keep writing and creating and funding their own projects. Broad City started writing their own stories and putting them on YouTube. People saw it work, and now they have their own show on Comedy Central.
Why horror and comedy?
Horror fanatic. Grew up watching horror films. I saw “Pet Cemetery” at five years old at the movies. My family loved horrors, and we had a Friday family movie night. I like seeing the silly side of something that people could be scared of. If you add comedy to it, it can be really over the top and it’s okay.
My boyfriend is a videographer and editor. For me being a theater major, and in film, it initially made me a bit phobic. But then I saw that it was a great platform to reach an audience, and that companies and brands were paying attention. I thought, ‘I definitely have to figure out how to use my experience and get on vine and tell a story in six seconds.’ Mostly comedy and random things, but I wanted to be the first one to do horror on that platform.
Roth’s Crypt TV was looking for social content creators to promote horror films they’re affiliated with. They caught wind of her vines. She takes the trailers and parody them, like mini-Scary Movies in six seconds. Since her start, she has built in audience of 60K followers. A compilation of her Vines can be found here: https://youtu.be/TryL9208jkg
I think I should be on it! I love Ryan Murphy. He’s good at blending humor into horror. He’s always casting diversely. He looks for characters and not what fits into the mold of what will sell in Hollywood. I’m looking forward to this project. It’ll probably be for a younger demographic, but will be a blend. I love that the focus will be on women, and will open the door for more opportunity.
J: I think you’re thinking of Scream Teens on Fox.
Oh! Um, I, how do I feel about that? I think I…when I saw the original, I was a teenager in high school. I think a lot of films rely more on the gore factor than the psychological factor, but I’m curious to see what they would do. I’m leery of adaptations. I think they may water it down for television. The plus side is that they’re introducing this to a whole new generation of people, so that’s exciting.
- Favorite Color? Red
- Favorite Horror Film? Pet Cemetery
- Favorite Horror Character? Dr. Frankenfurter
- Favorite Show? American Horror Story
- Favorite weapon? Machete
- Death by zombie, vampire or werewolf? Vampire cause I feel like it gets to be really sexy.
- Favorite classic villain? Nosferatu
- Left brain or right brain? I don’t know! [IIRC] We’ll go with left
- Favorite horror director? Eli Roth
- Favorite composition from a horror film? Psycho is pretty classic.
To learn more, see Mika’s work at vine.co/MikaMadness, follow her on Instagram @MikaKenyah, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sugarandspikescasting or drop her an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.