Alice Waddington

From Wikipedia the free encyclopedia

Alice Waddington
Irene Lago Clavero

(1990-07-31) July 31, 1990 (age 33)
Alma materUniversity of the Basque Country
Years active2010–present

Alice Waddington (born July 31, 1990) is a Spanish film director, writer, photographer and costume designer[1][2] having developed most of her work in the field of modern cinema. Her directing style is defined by a contemporary approach to the golden era of large-scale-studio horror films (1920s–1970s) in classical production companies such as Hammer Films or Universal's Creature Features; mixed with current surreal humor and sometimes including musical cinema.

Early life[edit]

Born as Irene[3] on July 31, 1990, in Bilbao, Spain to a Catalan forensic psychiatrist and a Galician teacher. She grew up in the blue-collar neighborhood of San Mamés, known for its working-class pride and industrial surroundings pre-gentrification[4]. During the 1990s, Bilbao was experiencing significant changes and facing various socio-economic challenges, such as terrorism[5] and a heroin crisis[6], an awareness Alice credits with her first contacts with the abstract ideas of horror.

Waddington adopted her stage name[3] at sixteen, while assisting director of photography Quique López.[7] At 18, she studied advertising at UPV-EHU University where she started capturing promotion stills and directing fashion films as a photographer and assistant of photography for the Spanish editions of Harper's Bazaar, Neo2[8] and others.


At 20 and for three years, she worked as an advertising creative, a producer and an advertising video editor at the agencies Leo Burnett Iberia and Social Noise also specializing as a digital storyboard artist.

Actress Ana Rujas on Alice Waddington's short film Disco Inferno
Actress Ana Rujas surrounded by a FX wall of fire on the set of Waddington-directed Disco Inferno.

In 2014, with the help of Mexican executive producer Yadira Ávalos, Waddington took a year off advertising agency work to write and direct a short movie. She found sponsors[9] to help her produce her first narrative 11-minute film,[10] Disco Inferno (2015), which received nominations in 63 international film festivals including genre fan favorites such as Palm Springs,[11] Fantasia, Sitges (Noves Visions Short award[12]) or Fantastic Fest, which first awarded her as Best Director in her category, and second best feature project of the Fantastic Market for her movie Paradise Hills.[13] Eleven other international festival wins ensued, with a considerable comparative presence of the short picture in American and Canadian festivals.

Waddington entered pre-production of her first full-length feature, Paradise Hills in 2017[13] with Spanish production company Nostromo Pictures.[2][14] The film is a science-fiction thriller written by Brian DeLeeuw[15] and Nacho Vigalondo. It was released in 2019.

Waddington has pointed out in interviews that after Paradise Hills she desires to direct biopics, socially metaphorical fantastic horror about minorities[16] and terror stories that have taken place.[17]

In June 2019, it was announced that Waddington is developing her second film Scarlet, from a script written by her and Kristen SaBerre. The film will be distributed by Netflix.[18]

In September 2021, Waddington was tapped to direct adaptation of comic book series Dept. H for Netflix.[19]

Social activism[edit]

Waddington is a proactive demander for progressive social change regarding causes related to female cooperation[20] and sorority within the arts.[3]

In the context of film, she has been vocal about the need for both more female-led and more diversely-cast films worldwide[21] and about motivating young women to enroll into filmmaking programs.[22] She has also often mentioned the need for film studios around the world to hire more women, with an accent on women of color.[16]

Personal life[edit]

Waddington is fluent in Spanish and English and conversational in French and Catalan.



Year Title Director Writer Producer Notes Ref(s)
2015 Disco Inferno Yes Yes Yes Short film
2019 Paradise Hills Yes Yes No


Waddington's short film "Disco Inferno" has been presented on 63 plus,[23] genre and conventional film festivals across the world, winning several awards:

Year Festival Category Film Result
2015 Austin Fantastic Fest - United States Shorts with Legs - Best Director[24] Disco Inferno Won[25]
Austin Fantastic Fest - United States Best Feature Project Paradise Hills Won (Silver)[26]
Sitges Film Festival - Spain Noves Visions - Best Short Film[12] Disco Inferno[27] Won
2016 Brooklyn Horror Film Festival - United States Best Director[28] Disco Inferno[29] Won[30]
Slamdance Film Festival United States[31] Best Anarchy Short Film Disco Inferno[32] Won[33]
Monster Fest - Australia Best Cinematography Disco Inferno Won[34]
C-FEM - Festival de Cine Fantástico Europeo de Murcia Grand Jury Prize Disco Inferno Won
Mikrofilm Short Festival - Spain Best Director[35] Disco Inferno Won
Cinefantasy Festival Internacional de Cinema Fantástico - Brazil[36] Best Short Film[37] Disco Inferno Won (Best Soundtrack)
Festival de Cine de Horror - Mexico Best Short Film Disco Inferno Won[38]
Festival Fantosfreak - Spain Best Short Film Disco Inferno Won[39]


  1. ^ Odriozola, Amaia (2013-07-18). "La nueva brigada de It Girls españolas" [The new Spanish It girl brigade]. Glamour Magazine (in Spanish). Retrieved 2017-03-21.
  2. ^ a b Cabeza, Elisabet (April 1, 2016). "Spanish Filmmakers to follow: The magnificent Seven". Screen International.
  3. ^ a b c Confuso, Hombre (2013). "'As women we are all sisters, and criticizing each other is a fruitless and harmful fight'". Doze Mag (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 2019-10-09.
  4. ^ Michael, Chris (2015-04-30). "The Bilbao Effect: is 'starchitecture' all it's cracked up to be? A history of cities in 50 buildings, day 27". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2024-07-13.
  5. ^ "ETA ten years on: The rise and fall of the Basque terror group". euronews. 2021-10-20. Retrieved 2024-07-13.
  6. ^ "La atracción del abismo. Los años oscuros de la heroína en Euskadi. | Aux Magazine". 2021-11-30. Retrieved 2024-07-13.
  7. ^ Ortega, Pablo (December 10, 2013). "Alice Waddington". Esquire Spain (in Spanish). Archived from the original on April 13, 2017. Retrieved March 31, 2017.
  8. ^ Diaz, Lilu (December 19, 2016). "Making of Neo2 Enero 2012" [Making of Neo2's January 2012 issue] (in Spanish).
  9. ^ Durán, Mawi. "National Spanish TV Program El Hub". Non Stop People (in Spanish). Retrieved January 11, 2016.
  10. ^ Rakestraw, Kevin (December 26, 2015). "Undistributed and Honorable Mentions (2015)". Film Pulse.
  11. ^ Fessier, Bruce (June 20, 2016). "ShortFest directors pick favorite packages of short films". USA Today.
  12. ^ a b Mayorga, Emilio (October 17, 2015). "'Invitation' tops Sitges". Variety.
  13. ^ a b Hopewell, John (August 13, 2015). "'Amateurs,' 'Paradise Hills,' 'Kiken' Set for Austin Fantastic Market". Variety.
  14. ^ De Pablos, Emiliano (January 14, 2016). "Atresmedia, Warner's 'Palm Trees' Dislodges 'Star Wars' from Spanish B.O. No. 1 Berth". Variety.
  15. ^ Rubinstein, Mark (May 1, 2016). "'The Dismantling': A Conversation With Brian DeLeeuw". The Huffington Post.
  16. ^ a b Miller, Amarna (March 3, 2017). "Alice Waddington, the director who makes fantastic genre films to denounce social issues". Atresmedia Cultura (Atresmedia culture, national Spanish Film and TV network) (in Spanish).
  17. ^ Alarcon, Samuel (December 20, 2016). "Upcoming Cinema (El Cine que Viene): Disco Inferno". National Spanish Radio and Television Network (RTVE and RNE) (in Spanish).
  18. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (June 26, 2019). "Netflix Lands 'Scarlet', Next Film For 'Paradise Hills' Helmer Alice Waddington". Deadline. Retrieved October 31, 2019.
  19. ^ "Alice Waddington To Direct Adaptation Of Dark Horse Entertainment's Graphic Novel 'Dept. H' For Netflix".
  20. ^ Editorial Team, Zurda (December 2015). "'Unfortunately the more I have relaxed my appearance as a woman, the more respect I have perceived'" (in Spanish).
  21. ^ Garcia Muñoz, Isabel (December 14, 2015). "Alice Waddington: I like to think we've created the first Gothic Horror film with twerking in it". Caras de la Información (in Spanish). Archived from the original on October 17, 2019. Retrieved March 31, 2017.
  22. ^ Perez Guevara, Jose Antonio (2017-02-19). "Interview with Alice Waddington". 242 películas después (in Spanish). Retrieved 2017-03-21.
  23. ^ W., Marvin (2016). "Disco Inferno's festival and award list".
  24. ^ Barlow, Wil (2 October 2015). "Fantastic Fest 2015 Award Winners Announced, Including 'Green Room' and 'Anomalisa' | IndieWire". Retrieved 2017-03-21.
  25. ^ Hernando, Pablo. "Spanish artists who deserve to be stars". GQ Magazine (in Spanish).
  26. ^ Sapienza, Ethan (13 August 2015). "Fantastic Fest Announces Pitch Projects for Genre Film Market | IndieWire". Retrieved 2017-03-21.
  27. ^ Bonzo, Alfredo (November 24, 2015). "Disco Inferno, by Alice Waddington (Critic)". Fiebre de Cabina (in Spanish).
  28. ^ Miska, Brad (October 18, 2016). "The Brooklyn Horror Film Festival Award Winners Announced!". Bloody Disgusting.
  29. ^ "Films at the Brooklyn Horror Film Festival". Arrow Video. September 16, 2016.
  30. ^ Jones, Tamika (October 20, 2016). "Horror Highlights: Brooklyn Horror Film Festival". Daily Dead.
  31. ^ William, L. Blizek (2016). "Disco Inferno". Journal of Religion and Film. 20 (2). University of Nebraska.
  32. ^ Jagernauth, Kevin (December 8, 2015). "Slamdance Film Festival Rounds Out Its 2016 Lineup". Indiewire.
  33. ^ Sharf, Zack (January 29, 2016). "Here Are the Winners of the 2016 Slamdance Film Festival". Indiewire.
  34. ^ Rowan-Legg, Shelagh (November 30, 2016). "'Raw', 'The Autopsy of Jane Doe' and More Win at Monster Fest 2016". Screen Anarchy.
  35. ^ "Mikrofilm Festival - Fifth Edition Winners". Mikrofilm Festival (in Spanish). August 16, 2016.
  36. ^ "Cinefantasy - Disco Inferno". CineFantasy. 2016. Archived from the original on 2016-10-15.
  37. ^ Perez, Silvana (August 17, 2016). "Meet the films selected for the 7th Cinefantasy Festival". Bocado Inferno (in Portuguese).
  38. ^ Zurda, Team (December 15, 2015). "Alice Waddington's Disco Inferno". Zurda Magazine.
  39. ^ A.Benitez, German (July 21, 2016). "Fantosfreak XVII: Festival Chronicle". Noticias en serie (in Spanish).