Mónica Mateo

Writer, director and producer, Mónica has made several films such as FOREVER YOUNG (short film, 2014), ADAM PEIPER (short film, 2015), DEEP BLUE (fashion film, 2017), I AM THE DARK (experimental short film, 2018) or YOU WILL NEVER BE BACK (short film, 2020).

Monica is currently working on the development of the feature film LA CASA, a project that received the Grant for the creation and development of a script for a feature film from the Community of Madrid in 2017 and was selected in the 7th edition of MadridCrealab. She is also working on the scripts for the feature film AS BESTAS and the short film EL PLACER MÁS ABSOLUTO, as well as on the series project LADY R.

Dust Films

You Will Never Be Back

Q & A

If the world you created in your film became a reality, is that a world you would want to live in?

Of course not! The world of YOU WILL NEVER BE BACK, or better said, the alternative reality of YWNBB is a fucking nightmare. If none of your loved ones know you, it ́s like you doesn ́t exist. You are nothing without affections.

Is there a Sci-Fi world you’d buy a one-way ticket to?

Well, I think that I will choose the LOST Island (series). I remember when I saw this show I thought: Ey! An amazing place where you don ́t have to work, where start from zero and where you are surrounded by hot and interesting people? Yes, there are a lot of dangerous things inside the jungle, but it ́s ok! I would fight against them!

Name a Sci-Fi character you relate to on a spiritual level? Who is your Sci-Fi spirit animal/spirit alien?

I fully empathize with the alien from UNDER THE SKIN. I loved this movie and I loved this character and his/her evolution pretending to be a human being. At the end, the alien was more human than some humans are. I cried with the last scene and I thought about how terrible is sexual violence. Not even an alien is safe from it.

Friend or Foe: humanoid robots with advanced artificial intelligence? Friend, always friend. What if robots start making their own Sci-Fi films?

It would be amazing!! Probably they talk about us and they would have every right to do so. We have been telling stories about them for a long time! It ́s time has come!

Will you support them in their endeavors?

Of course, I will support them. I want to see what an advanced intelligence has to tell.

In 1996, Bugs Bunny recruited Michael Jordan and Bill Murray to form the greatest basketball squad of all-time, the Tune Squad; you’re Bugs, who’s on your Sci-Fi Tune Squad?

David Bowie, Sarah Connor, Ellen Ripley, Special Agent Dale Cooper, Eleven and Nicolas Cage.

You’ve gotta go through some bad ideas to get to the good ones. Tell us one of your bad ideas. How do you get past the bad ones to find your spark?

I think that bad ideas doesn ́t exist, they are just ideas that need to be worked on. When an idea comes to you, is for a reason: a theme that inspire you, causes you discomfort or a constant image in your brain that you need to understand. A bad idea is only an idea that can evolve. The spark for me is a moment; the moment when a lot of thoughts and images in my head, with no apparent connection, place themselves and fit together in a magical way, like the pieces of a puzzle.

Do you consider yourself part of a sci-fi community? Or when your brain is in the future and your body’s in the present, is that isolating?

Well, I think that sci-fi has always a component of isolation and I like it. Sometimes you need space for yourself and maybe that is the reason why I like this genre.

Do you consider yourself more of an analog or digital person? What kind of balance do strike between the two?

I grew up in the ́80 so it can be said that in a romantic sense, I am an analog person. However the truth is that I love the technology of the digital age and all the facilities and possibilities that offers. I am becoming more digital day by day, but I think that digital never will be as authentic and charming as analog.

Is there a disconnect between the technology you make films about and the technology that you make films with?

I think so. Despite of nowadays the technology that we use is amazing, our imagination is always one step ahead (or many steps ahead) and this is the right and logical order: first we dream and then, we developed the technology necessary to make this dream come true. After that, we continue dreaming and we continue developing. We always want more.

When you’re creating the props and sets that make a new world, where do you look for inspiration? How do you create objects that are relatable but unfamiliar?

I see films with similar worlds than mine and also I revisit the movies that probably inspired my world. I review architecture books, I go to exhibitions of painting, photography or anything else, I search in the internet and most important: I look all around very carefully. I think that is the key to create objects relatable but unfamiliar, because there is always something around you that you can take advantage of. Sometimes the most unusual things, has it ́s genesis in simple stuff.

Lightning round: Star Wars or Star Trek? Philip K. Dick or William S. Burroughs? Practical or CGI? Dystopia or Utopia? Post Apocalypse or Pre Apocalypse?

Star Wars. Philip K. Dick. Whenever possible, I prefer practical. Dystopia. Post Apocalypse.