Basic Witch

2020 Official Selection / Etheria Film Night
Directed by Yoko Okumura
2019| USA | 12 min.

Young witch Lily uses her magic to make Brian understand why their sexual encounter was bad for her.

Director Bio
Yoko Okumura is a writer/director born in a Buddhist temple in Japan, raised in Minnesota, and now living and working in Los Angeles. She is attached to several feature films as director and has shadowed extensively to transition into episodic series directing. She’s written and directed for numerous clients in short form scripted, documentary and digital. Yoko especially loves to tell colorful, often glamorous stories through unique and under represented perspectives. She shadowed the Freeform show Good Trouble, the Netflix show The Politician through the Ryan Murphy Half Initiative, and the CBS series Life In Pieces through the Fox Directing Program. Her short, Kimi Kabuki, about a house wife who follows her deceitful husband to a porn convention, received a DGA Student Film Award and the Panavision New Filmmakers Award. Yoko earned her film/video BFA at Calarts, and her directing MFA at AFI. She dabbles in fire dancing, aerial silks and would like to learn how to do a backflip.

Director Statement

Maggie May combines what I love: horror with gore, dark comedy, and social commentary. The idea for the film came after looking at current world events and noting people’s responses to them. I really feel that being apathetic to those being badly treated is akin to saying you’re okay with it. Social media is awash with people sharing social awareness campaigns to help those in need. People help strangers, giving what they can. The other side is filled with narcissism, vapidness and selfies by those not being able to see the world past themselves. Maggie May takes these two sides of apathy towards others, and vapid narcissism, and wraps them is a bloody story in a suburban home setting. I’m interested in different types of horror. While monster horror is a personal favourite, and standard horror of ‘bad guy hiding in the shadows’ has its place, there’s something so much scarier in bringing horror into the light. Real is scary.And let’s face it, families can be the scariest moments of a lot of people’s lives. The very real fear not being cared about by others, not being loved or loveable, is at the root of a lot of people’s personal demons. And this is the horror our lead character Sam finds herself in. When she cries for help, for her life and for her babies, and that falls on deaf ears, she’s living the isolated nightmare of many people