Featuring a truly memorable and unexpectedly moving central performance from Townsend (who won the ‘Best Actress’ award from Total Film magazine at the 2020 Arrow Video FrightFest), with support from the excellent Brea Grant (After Midnight) The Stylist is sharply observed and erm, stylishly made. An astute study of loneliness and obsession, Gevargizian takes everyday situations – grabbing a coffee, sending a text, having a haircut, and a girls night out – and imbues them with a deliciously macabre flavour. Be warned though – there’s quite a lot of red stuff flying around and it’s not hair dye!
The stunning new official artwork was created by Sara Deck who said the following “The Stylist offers up a banquet of decadent horror visuals, and so I had no shortage of options to pull from. Ultimately I wanted to focus on Claire’s fluid identity within the context of her trophy collection. Her fixation with occupying another persona by keeping their hair as a souvenir is frightening, and yet somehow you feel empathy for her struggle. In the end, by denying her sense of self in favour of her victims’ identities she becomes her own killer.”
Director Jill Gervargizian also said “I was attracted to Deck’s work because, number one, it’s gorgeous. And I felt like there were a lot of similarities between her work and how we made film. Lots of attention to detail… realism mixed with theatrics.. a lot of her work is very gothic. Her idea to have the mannequin head wearing Claire’s scalp, instead of Claire wearing another’s, was such a powerful layered statement about Claire as a character. I always assumed Claire would be on the art, and she is, just in a way I never imagined! I love it.”
A hit on the festival circuit in 2020 (including Sitges and Arrow Video FrightFest), Screen Anarchy describes The Stylist as “a stellar debut from director Gevargizian”. Developed from her popular 2016 short, Gevargizian’s film, along with the likes of Prevenge, St. Maud and Promising Young Woman, herald a new era of startlingly original and socially relevant thrillers with women front and centre.
Synopsis: We all dream of being someone else… but for Claire (Najarra Townsend, Contracted), that dream goes from an obsession to a living nightmare. Hairstylist by day, serial killer and collector of scalps by night, Claire’s lonely existence is thrown into turmoil when her regular client, Olivia (Brea Grant, After Midnight; director of 12 Hour Shift), asks her to style her hair for her wedding day. Increasingly fixated on Olivia’s seemingly flawless life, Claire vows to lock up her scalp collection and change her ways for good – only to discover that repressing your deadly desires is easier said than done…