Interview with Kat Best
1. Were you always interested in the entertainment industry or was it something you discovered you had a passion for?
Looking back now, it’s hard to recall a time I didn’t have a passion for the entertainment industry. I think it all started with my love for stories. Was it something I was just born with? Maybe, but I think my parents also played a part in it. My dad would read to me every night, and whenever we were in the car for a long drive my mom would have these cassette tapes of audiobooks, or Greek Myths told for children for me to listen to. I’m an only child, so I think that in a way stories filled a bit of that place that would usually be occupied by a sibling. They always felt like more than stories, more than fictional characters.I suppose that’s where it all started. That love for stories grew into a love for the entertainment industry, because that’s where these stories are brought to life. Some people prefer books since they allow more freedom for the reader’s imagination – and I understand that. But watching stories I love brought to life on the screen has always captured my heart and soul. I could watch the same movie over and over and over again and never get tired of it (that still hasn’t changed at all). Nothing in the world ever seemed better to me than being a part of that that magic.
2. What was the first film you wrote?
It was a short film called “On Holiday”. I was 17 at the time and managed to get a handful of friends together to shoot it all over a weekend. We ended up improvising a lot. None of us had ever made a movie, acted, or anything like that before. It was completely spontaneous and we really just did it for fun, but we were so happy with the end result that we entered it in a film festival in Barcelona and it won best short! A great reminder to do what you love and listen to your gut instincts.
3. Where do you draw inspiration from?
When I’m feeling very low on inspiration I usually watch a good movie, preferably at the movie theatre, or a few episodes of one of my favorite shows (Lost, Breaking Bad, etc.). Great storytelling inspires great stories. I’ve drawn inspiration from countless and diverse sources over the years. More often than not a great idea will be triggered at a completely random moment, but the inspiration that ultimately led to it was built up over a much longer period time.
I get bored extremely easily, which quickly escalates to restlessness and anxiety, but well-told stories are something I never grow bored of. There are more than a few movies and shows that I can recite from memory, word-for-word. That should give you an idea of how many times I sat through them, always watching intently, immersed in the marvels of their awe-inspiring fictional worlds.
4. Tell us about your creative process?
Creativity essentially comes down to making new connections with all the information you have in your conscious and/or subconscious mind. Sometimes it’s a new situation, or a new piece of information that triggers it, but oftentimes it’s a new flame that sparks from rearranging old memories and ideas. It’s bizarre and unpredictable, and creatives are often misunderstood because in order for all that to happen we need certain conditions that can be perceived as ‘unusual’. We get accused of being lazy, disorganized, eccentric, weird, oddballs, etc. but the truth is that if we don’t embrace everything that make us who we are, the creative process can’t even begin, let alone come to fruition. It’s different for every creative person. In my case, isolating myself for a few days and doing nothing but binge shows, watch movies, browse the web freely in the company of my dogs will create the perfect conditions for my brain to ‘work its magic’. To someone on the outside it may seem like I’m just being incredibly lazy and simply procrastinating, but that “doing nothing” puts me in an ideal state of relaxation, mixed in with what I like to call recreational anxiety. It’s not the kind of anxiety that paralyzes you, just a very mild version that arises precisely from the fact that I’m “doing nothing”. When that happens I’m suddenly filled with this incredible creative energy and that’s when I get my tools out: whiteboards, post-its, clothes lines stretched across the room so I can hang up whatever I need to visualize. It’s more or less around this time that I reach out to a couple of friends and basically say, “Hey, come stay at my house for a few days so I can bounce ideas off of you.” The reason it helps to have people there, even if they’re not creatives per se, is because I have everything I need somewhere in my brain, but I need help finding the right bits and unraveling them to make sure all the pieces fit, and that they make sense to someone who can’t access my thoughts. One of the most important and difficult parts of the process is making sure you’re able to successfully transmit what you’re picturing in your mind to other people.
5. Since you’re a writer, director, and producer, do you have one facet you enjoy more than the others? Why?
That’s a tough question. I enjoy each one in different ways. For example: I love writing, but the idea of having to write for a living and not just when I’m in the mood to do it isn’t something I could do. Being a producer comes very easily to me and I generally have fun doing it, but I don’t think anything can beat the feeling of passion that flows through me when I’m directing a project that I truly believe in. The only issue is that, because I really need that passion to exist in order to excel as a director, I won’t take on directing gigs for projects unless I feel wholeheartedly invested in the concept. One of the downsides to being a perfectionist is that you’ll pass up on doing certain things because it seems pointless to make an effort unless perfection can be achieved. I’ll work as a producer on pretty much any project, but with directing I absolutely need to feel wholeheartedly invested in it.
6. Where do you see yourself in your career in five years?
It’s essential to always be open to change, or to new beginnings. I always remind myself that no matter how hard I try or how much I want something, I can never see the grand scheme of things. The more you work on becoming the best possible version of yourself, the more you’ll feel your surroundings aligning to guide you towards whatever it is that makes you unequivocally happy. The universe knows what it’s doing. The people, situations, and opportunities it puts in your path will match the energy you put out. So, naturally, as you grow and strive to improve yourself as a person, the type of things you attract will change accordingly.That being said, at this point in time I picture myself in five years and I see an even more established filmmaker, surrounded by like-minded creatives, witnessing the magic of audiences falling in love with the fictional worlds we’ve brought to the screen. The kind of worlds and stories that have the power to speak to and unite people from all over the world, regardless of their cultural, socio-economical, or historical backgrounds.
7. Do you have any upcoming projects you’d like to share with us?
There is one in particular that is very exciting and I would talk about it for days if I could, but I can’t really go into details yet. It’s a high-concept Sci-Fi/Drama TV show that we’re currently in development on. It’ll be another couple of years before it’s out on demand and we really can’t wait to share it with the world!
8. Are there any other messages you’d like to share with your fans?
I’d like to share this quote by American novelist Jack Kerouac, because I couldn’t have said it better myself: “Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see thins differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, disbelieve them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them, because they change things. They invent. They imagine. They heal. They explore. They create. They inspire. They push the human race forward. Maybe they have to be crazy. Because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.”