“When I found out that spending time alone in my imagination, building characters and worlds, could become a career, I lit up. I spent a lot of my life struggling to remain in reality instead of fantasy. Now I’m a bridge between both.”
/ Maiara Walsh /
PHOENIX is my passion project that I’ve held close to the chest for ten years now. It’s a story about a lonely girl struggling between fantasy and reality to escape a hard truth. She meets an eclectic group of misfits who take her down the rabbit hole of drugs, sex, art, and deadly misunderstanding. Alice in Wonderland meets Black Swan.
When I write, I see every shot in my head. How it moves, where it leads us, when to hold on what and for how long. Directing was the natural progression from writing for me. I’m very hands on with the actors, and am very specific when it comes to the aesthetic of the film, which is why having an amazing DP is important. I worked with Zach Salsman on this, and loved what we created together along with the cast and crew, and countless people who helped bring this sizzle to life.
On set of our three day shoot. Clearly experiencing pure joy behind the monitor.
“Oftentimes when I’m writing, I’m not in control of the characters or their decisions. They take on a life of their own and I follow them into the story.”
/ Maiara Walsh /
When I decided that I needed to direct a short to prove I could tell a story through film, I didn’t know what story to tell. I had a few friends ask me to direct their shorts, and although they were thought provoking, I didn’t have a vision for them. Then, I was over at a good friend’s house and was introduced to the practice of a facility offering blood transfusions to aging rich people from young healthy donors. I couldn’t get the concept out of my head. I kept picturing the elite clients as modern day vampires. I decided to sit down in front of my computer and see if any inspiration would strike. I wrote the short in one night (with lots of subsequent editing). I realized this was the story I had to tell. I had no intention to turn it into a feature when I began. That’s the thing about the creative spark, once it hits you, if you let it grow, there’s no telling where it might lead.
I learned a lot over our three day shoot. Part of directing is problem solving. Something will always go wrong. And you can either lose your mind over it or trust that there’s an even better solution at hand (extremely difficult to do in the moment). But when you can master that, you can master life. Because life works in the same way. It will never be all good or all bad forever. And when you learn to roll with whatever comes your way, that’s when the magic happens.
I had an excellent cast and crew for Young Blood, and worked with Zach Salsman as my DP again. I wanted a crisp and sterile look for the facility.
This short film is not yet released. Please message me for a password.
“Every project is a new challenge, a new learning experience. There are going to be things you love and things you hate every time you watch it.”
/ Maiara Walsh /
In 2015, I shot a movie called VANish with Danny Trejo, directed by Bryan Bockbrader. A producer I was working with at the time, Andy Rose, and I wrote this song specifically for the film (not my style now). I went out to the desert with a small crew and directed this music video.