A stunning reimagining of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, writer and director Bomani J. Story makes his feature film debut with the new horror movie The Angry Black Girl And Her Monster, opening in theaters this week, and we recently spoke to the filmmaker about his radical retelling the iconic source material, creating a new kind of creature for 2023, and more.
“It came when I first read the book when I was fresh out of high school,” he tells HDN of his first introduction to the novel Frankenstein., “and I was just so enraptured in it, obsessed, I couldn’t put it down, and it gave me an anxiety attack. I was just like, man there’s so much stuff in this book that people are not tapping with these adaptations. There’s a lot to interpret here. So I just always knew that I wanted to do something with it, but it took a while to figure it out.
“Then once it clicked, I realized that for a lot of people with this story, the focus is on the monster, which is a huge part of the movie, but I always wanted to recapture and reinterpret and ground our lead and what ‘our Victor Frankenstein’ has as motives for this thing, and try to humanize her as much as possible for this. So this all really starts with the text for me, because I just thought that the literature was so groundbreaking and a lot of the themes really relevant to today. I just knew in my head, if could capture two-percent of what Shelley did in the book, I feel like I’d be in a good spot.”
On his decidedly modern reimagining of Shelley’s novel, Story adds, “Trying to figure out the format or how this could translate to screen was a challenge. Obviously I’m inspired by the book, so I’m taking what I can of the book and then mixing it with a movie language that I understand and that I love. So for me it was just a matter of those things, and truly finding what this story is in a contemporary setting. So finding those and then dancing on those themes as lightly as I can, it was a challenge. I hope it was effective in that it worked, and that it connects with some audiences.”
Of course we also talked about Halloween, as Story reveals his favorite costume and candy, as well as the new kind of “mad scientist” at the heart of his movie, giving life to the film’s practical creature, Cronenberg’s influence on the gore, and more in our full discussion.
You can watch our exclusive video interview with writer/director Bomani J. Story below.
The Angry Black Girl And Her Monster opens in theaters on June 9.
For more Halloween news, follow @HalloweenDaily.