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Sylvia Soska Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (3) | Mini Bio (1) | Trivia (11) | Personal Quotes (34)

Overview (3)

Birth NameSylvia Elizabeth Soska
Nickname Harvey
Height 5' 4½" (1.64 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Identical twins, writers, directors, actors even stunt players, the Soska sister's have always loved twisted film. Even at an early age, they devoured Stephen King novels, one after another as fast as they could read - and snuck into the over 18 sections at video stores, to critique the bloody images on the backs VHS horror movies and in gore magazines.

They both entered the film industry, acting and doing background work - and were soon unsatisfied with stereotypical roles that were commonly offered to identical twins. To expand their horizons, they trained in martial arts in hopes to pick-up stunt roles and briefly attended a film school that included an intensive stunt program. For one of the school's final film projects, their prepared short film had it's funding misappropriated and their short was pulled from the program. Undeterred, they decided to go ahead with it anyway, getting a new cast and crew and paying for it out of their own pockets. The title of that project was 'Dead Hooker In A Trunk'.

'Dead Hooker In A Trunk' - their debut film, which the twins wrote, directed, produced, starred in, and preformed the stunts. Using Robert Rodriguez's book, Rebel Without A Crew - a bible for how film-making could be done on a modest budget, armed only with creativity and ambition. Even following the spirit of El Mariachi, the twins' story reached the original El Mariachi, actor Carlos Gallardo - who not only gave the ladies advice, but appeared in the film - as God. The completed film - embraced by horror fans, film festivals, and critics - became an underground sensation, called "a hidden gem in indie film-making" and "a cult classic in the waiting", and won multiple awards: Pollygrind's Favorite Feature, Best Screenplay, City of Death's Best Director Award, and Cinefantasy's Audience Favorite Prize.

In 2008 the twins incorporated, Twisted Twins Productions -- to create their own label for many future projects to come, including their highly anticipated second feature, American Mary, an analogy of their own struggles in the film industry. American Mary has gone on to win numerous praise and awards. The film has gone on to become a cult classic and the various costumes of the lead character Mary Mason a Halloween and horror convention favorite for cos-players.

The Soska Sisters have gone on to be very outspoken about equal rights across the board including but not limited to gender equality and equal rights for the LGBT community. They're actively involved in promoting blood donation and create a new PSA for it every February. And they are only just getting started.

2014 was a big year with the Soska Sisters bringing a new life to See No Evil 2 where they resurrect the WWE Studios franchise with WWE Superstar Glenn "Kane" Jacobs reprising his role as Jacob Goodnight and scream queens Danielle Harris and Katharine Isabelle appear together for the first time. As well, the Twins will be one of the all star director line up for ABCs of Death 2 in a segment that will shock and be destined for cult status. Their segment, T is for Torture Porn, has since been banned in Germany.

In 2015, the twins did a genre jump, teaming again with Lionsgate and WWE Studios, with a action revenge thriller called Vendetta to star, Dean Cain, Paul 'Big Show' Wight, and Michael Eklund. The high action, ultra gory nature of the film proved that the sisters are not one trick ponies as they expand their sensibilities to this Justin Shady written, men's prison revenge flick.

Avid comic book fans, the Soska Sisters have teamed up with Daniel Way (Deadpool, Daken) to create their own very graphic novel entitled Kill-Crazy Nymphos Attack! with artist Rob Dumo & cover artist Dave Johnson which is a pitch black satire on patriarchal society and women's roles within it. The very graphic novel is set with a 2017 release date.

September 16th, 2015, also marks the release of Jen & Sylvia Soska's first collaboration with Marvel comics with their Night Nurse story line 'The Risk of Infection' featured in Secret Wars Journal #5. The Soska twins have been long time fans of Marvel Comics and been quite vocal in their interests to tackle the adaptation of one of their stories for the big screen with them at the helm as directors. In April it was announced that the twins would be teaming with Marvel again, this time writing 'The Ripley' as a Guardians of the Galaxy story featured in Guardians of Infinity #8.

The mediums that the twins take on ever expanding, the Soska Sisters are the hosts of the survival horror game-show called Hellevator that premiered October 21 2015 on GSN. The show is a creation from Blumhouse, GSN, Matador, and Lionsgate. The show just enjoyed it's second season and received even more attention when it was made available on VOD through Netflix and Hulu proving that evil twins continue to have a rich history with elevators and scaring people.

In February 2016, the directing duo of Jen and Sylvia Soska came on board to direct a remake of David Cronenberg's 1977 zombie thriller Rabid. John Vidette's Somerville House Releasing entered into a joint venture with Paul Lalonde and Michael Walker to produce a feature film and original TV series based on the 1977 Canadian horror film.

December 11, 2016 will mark the twins' company, Twisted Twins Productions' 8 year anniversary which will have them with 4 feature films, 2 graphic novels, a series of blood donation PSAs, and a television show. Not too shabby for a pair of twins from Canada who set their sites on shaking up the entertainment industry playing by their own rules and leaving a hefty cinematic body count in their wake.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Twisted Twins Productions

Trivia (11)

Is identical twin sister to Jen Soska, who has been her working partner since the girls started to work.
Blood types is AB positive. Blood donation awareness is very important to the Twisted Twins as they make a PSA to promote donation every February during 'Women In Horror Recognition' Month (starting in 2010).
Is a huge fan of Robert Rodriguez and Carlos Gallardo's 'El Mariachi.' The first hand account of making their no budget feature is what inspired the twins to make their own no budget feature, 'Dead Hooker in a Trunk.'.
Being avid fans of what Carlos Gallardo has brought to the world of independent filmmaking, the twins cast him appropriately in the cameo role as 'God' in the film which Gallardo happily accepted.
Was born Thursday, April 29th, 1983 at 4:58 am. Her twin, Jen, was born nineteen minutes later - taking more time because she was born almost half the size of her sister. Both girls were born on their mother's birthday.
Is an extensively trained mixed martial artist. Before starting work as a director, Jen and Sylvia retired from acting to pursue stunt work with their training. Both girls are avid supporters of actors performing their own stunts where applicable.
Sylvia collects tarantulas, having wanted to be an arachnologist from an early age. She keeps giant species in her collection in hopes of beating the record of 11 inches in leg span which is held by captive-bred tarantulas. 13 inch tarantulas have been recorded in the wild, but never captivity.
Was an Honor Roll Student through all her years of school, as was her twin sister.
Her first language is Hungarian.
When incorporating Twisted Twins Productions on December 11, in 2008, the twins had to choose different titles. Sylvia became President whereas Jen became Chairman of the company.
Daughter of Agnes Soska and Marius Soska.

Personal Quotes (34)

Oh my gosh! You won't believe what we do to penises in Mary! We're doing horrible things to penises in this one. You're going to be begging us to just do a forked penis instead (laughs). Our friends reading some of the script have said " Why don't you like men, penis this, penis that."(laughs) We love men, they're fun."
With Dead Hooker in a Trunk (2009), we knew what our limitations were. It was El Mariachi (1992), go out and film a movie style. It was loose and crazy, so we made a story that would adhere to that style of filmmaking. That's the romance about grind-house, because that's how they made their movies too. It worked very well and I'm really proud of the insanity that DHIAT is.
[on Poltergeist (1982)]: I was about nine years old and I watched it on TV with my mom and sister. I remember the mother slipping back into this pit of reanimated corpses and it scared the shit out of me. This could have been a bad memory, but it was actually the first time I learned what was actually going on behind the scenes in horror filmmaking because my mom decided to explain it very logically to me - everything on the screen was a result of very talented artists working to make it terrifying.
Hannah and us have a very special relationship. We were introduced by mutual friend, feminist, and film maker, Eli Roth - he thought we'd get along and it's seriously like we were separated at birth. It was our first interview and a great friendship came from it.
We've been acting since we were little girls. It's an extremely difficult and often disappointing industry and, as we got older, the roles that we were offered consisted of twin girl, stereotypical, sexpot roles. Not that we have anything against that - just in a proper time and place with some justification in the script. It got to the point that we were just going out for roles that we didn't really want in the first place and we realized that we needed a change.
I think there is a very different audience reaction when a woman is the victim in a horror in opposition to a male. Women are given more sympathy as they are commonly thought of as weaker than men. The audience would feel like being more protective of a woman in a dangerous situation. Society insists that we be protective of women and children. People still feel that way and it is a device to make a scare more impactful when the victim is a female. Having said that, the horror genre is littered with poor quality movies that don't have much artistic merit but rather seem to follow some unspoken horror stereotype with a bunch of dumb, helpless women that fall prey to some evil menace. At the same time, it is the genre where the final girl was born. Women often being the ones to kick some ass and still be standing with the bad guy dead at her feet.
I feel very naked with this new story (American Mary (2012)) - which is silly because very little of the script is literal from our lives, but I feel after watching this movie, you will know everything about us.
I love Hungarian food like any good Hungarian girl. Spicy food rocks, but I'm also a dedicated fan of Burger King's Whopper.
We had a final project for film school where we got to make short films. They had us break into groups and work within them. They ended up saying they didn't have the budget for our group. We thought, "fuck that" and decided to do it anyways, relying on our own assets to get the film made. However, there was a list of things that we were forbidden from putting in our films which included, but was not limited to, nudity, necrophilia, foul language, vomiting, religious themes, excessive blood and violence, etc, etc. We were sure to include as many of those as possible.

When we finished the film and screened it at the school, half the audience was cheering and laughing so loud that you couldn't hear anything and the other half was angrily exiting, disgusted and put completely off. It was amazing to have so much love and hate in one room.
We joked a lot on set that God wanted us to make this movie. There were so many things that we got away with that it feels like a higher power was watching us. I remember just digging a hole in a park with what looked like a dead body and police came by just to have a look. If you are holding a camera, people give you a certain level of lenience.
The only reason why I am here today is because the people in the horror community have made it possible. When I was a little girl, I was at the fish market with my Grandfather. I decided in my little girl way that I was going to use my spending money to buy a fish for my cat. He told me to ask the fisherman myself. I went over, explained that I'd like to purchase a fish for my cat please and thank you. The man smiled and got me a fish - free of charge. I was shocked - that's not the way the world works. I went to my Grandfather to find out why that would happen and he told me something that I carry on today - 'If you treat people with kindness and respect, the whole world opens up for you.'
We never really set out like, we're going to be writer/directors now. We were just pissed at the roles we were being offered, then pissed that the film school that we decided to attend was a complete embarrassing rip off that pulled our funding.
It can be confusing when you have two directors and even more confusing when they look the exact same. We make sure that we have pre-planned everything before walking onto set so we can be unified. Jen is very compassionate and kind - she has really good relationships with everyone and gets to know everything about them. She has this really crazy sense of humor that she puts into all our work which is amazing to counter-balance the dreadful, depressing shit I tend to enjoy. I'm a lot more stern than Jen. I will give people the benefit of the doubt, but I also tend to be the one who removes problematic people from a project. Life's too short to work with shitty people.
[which twin is older] Me! But I sort of cheated, I guess. I am nineteen minutes older, and came out at seven pounds. Jen was only about three. Apparently, I tried to eat her in the womb. Womb combat - point Sylv.
[on Halloween] We would look forward to it all year long. My parents thought it was funny because we would muchly prefer Halloween to Christmas, birthdays, anything else. There have been lots of folks that used to come over to me and say, "It's not Halloween" because of my attire. Now, every day kind of is.
[on the character of Lance in American Mary (2012)] The scene with him and Mary, the milkshake scene, is really the heart of the film. One of the main themes in American Mary is 'appearances are everything' and we wanted to work against surface appearance, showing the real heart of different individuals. Twan is great because he is that guy. He's like seven feet tall, muscular, covered in tattoos and you look at him and feel like you should be terrified, and what you get is one of the most honest, kind, gracious human beings on the planet. His whole life, people treat him a certain way and make up their mind about him before getting to know him. Same is true for a girl that looks like Katie and people who have gotten body modifications or other cosmetic surgery - we wanted to disillusion that way of perceiving people.
[on 'Poltergeist' changing her life] We watched it together, we did fine, but come bedtime, we were mortified. It was then that my mom did something that would forever change the way that I look at horror, she explained what I had actually seen - the director, writer, actors, sets, and prosthetic artists that worked together with the intention of scaring the audience. It was a job to scare people and it's all pretend? That was it, we were hopelessly hooked.
I don't like to preach in films, I don't like to have a final moment where we tell the audience 'this is how you should feel about this'. You definitely don't get that in MARY. You get to make your mind up about the character, what she goes through, and her own actions in those events. I feel that a lot of films make characters without flaw and I love flaws. The film is full of deeply flawed characters that you can either empathize with or hate.
What did offend me was a slew of a comments on what an unintelligent slut I am followed by a statement that I 'probably don't even know who Dario Argento is'. That pissed me off. Dario Argento's use of color in his lighting for his films was a huge inspiration in American Mary (2012). I understand someone not liking a film, we've gotten people calling Dead Hooker a masterpiece and people saying that it is the worst film they have ever seen in their lives, but to suggest that I am not a horror fan offends me on a personal level. Whether I'm a terrible filmmaker is always going to be up for discussion as long as Jen and I are making films, but my being a horror fan should not.
It's very important to Jen and me to have honesty in our work, it makes it more relatable even in a fantastical situation like filmmaking. The underground surgeries, the procedures and body modification community is very real. They don't stop being who they are after the film is finished and given that this is one of the first films, if not the first feature film, to put that culture into the spotlight, we wanted to properly represent them. I think too often people make judgements without really looking into what or who they are talking about and I didn't want that to happen in this situation.
Jen and I are born collaborators, we have always had one another and worked together as a team, so the team comes very natural to us. Jen is, in many if not all ways, my better half. She's got this beautiful outlook on the world, a wonderful quirky sense of humor, and she is brilliant with people.
Every time we try and do something normal it ends up really fucked up. Like 'Dead Hooker In A Trunk' was supposed to be like a fun road trip movie, and 'American Mary' is a romantic comedy, and everyone always looks at me like 'what are you talking about?' I think I might actually be fucked in the brain.
I had learnt about body modification through an April Fool's prank that was online, but at the time I thought it was authentic. It had two identical twin brothers. One brother had his arm severed off and attached onto his other brothers, and because they were genetically identical the limbs weren't protected. Then he had his ring finger taken off and put onto this other brothers solo remaining hand, so that he had an elongated finger. It didn't creep me out as much as the love letters that accompanied it that said, "Well in order to do something like this you have to be an identical twin," to understand why you would want to do it, because they all do it. So every time something scares me I become obsessed with it and Jennifer and I became obsessed with body modification.
We're huge Clive Barker fans, and I remember one of the things he wrote about Pinhead was that he never gave him any single likable quality and he never made him do anything good, yet men and women both adored him. And I thought, "That's so cool," because you rarely get a woman in a movie and you give her a lot of flaws and make her a horrible person-and if you really look at Mary, I mean you can identify with Mary a bit-but she never does anything unselfishly. Not once through the entire movie. And I bring that up to people afterwards and they're like, "Oh yeah!" And I'm like, "Yeah, but you were kind of on her side-all those horrible things she was doing. You horrible person!"
[on the prosthetics and actors featured in American Mary] Even the crew was fooled by them. But there were no visual effects in the film. They were practical effects, or the actors were members of the body-modification community. We didn't have any judgment on set, not even a joke. We wanted it to be a safe environment.
I always told my mom that being identical twins who did horror movies would one day pay off. And seven years later, it's finally getting somewhere.
It's almost like it's being pulled from the headlines of today with its themes of explosive violence, sexual aggression towards women, and human beings acting like rabid animals. Yet, this was something David Cronenberg was already commenting about almost 40 years ago. Its themes are ripe for expansion and further commentary.
The work of David Cronenberg is legendary, and Rabid is much more than just a horror movie. The real message of his film is powerful, and even more pivotal as we look at the world around us today. It's an honor to be involved in this love letter to his original, which we handle with the same respect as Paul Schrader's Cat People, Alexandre Aja's The Hills Have Eyes and John Carpenter's The Thing.
It's so wonderful to be getting back to body horror. This is sci-fi body horror, so it's very creative with Rose's side effects from her procedure. I like having that freedom in being creative -- looking at what we have and deciding how are we going to tell his story in a way that leaves an impact on the audience.
I was ready to fight. I was always ready to fight.
Making a movie, it's so many balls in the air, but if you have two jugglers, you drop a lot less balls. (on directing as a team with her sister, Jen)
I didn't want people to look at me and think Penthouse. I want them to look at me and have nightmares.
It ended up containing a lot of stuff that we were feeling already, but after the election it was just amped up. There are some scenes in there where everyone was like, "Now that this has happened do you realize what this means?" Because, what is RABID? It's about a dude trying to control a woman's body.

It's a very interesting body horror because as a woman your body is looked at in so many different ways. You're never not being looked at. So, what if - all of a sudden - you could control that?
Oh, absolutely. Women exist in such a rabid world and people act "rabid" around sexy girls. We want it to be a commentary on how people act around one another, what is the instigator of that behavior, what's the reaction to it? What's the social reaction to that kind of thing?

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