Actress Adriana Mather Launches Prod. Co Started By Two Women & A Native American


There are many reasons why we need more diversity in Hollywood. The biggest one of all is the need to see a wider variety of stories, characters, and perspectives on screen that reflect back the lives of the audience watching them. If there was ever a living embodiment of what diverse Hollywood could and should represent, it is actress and writer Adriana Mather.

Not familiar with the name yet? Oh don’t worry, after reading this interview, we guarantee you won’t forget her! Aside from being a actress caught in an industry which isn’t exactly known for catering to the vast array of female talent that exists, Adriana is part of a movement of women who are foregoing the traditional route to stardom and instead launching their own creative outlets to produce the films and stories they want to tell.

Adriana started Zombot Pictures, a production company, with two friends: producer/composter Anya Remizova, and writer/director James Bird. Together they make up a diverse group of founders – two women and one Native American. Now how many Hollywood production companies can boast of that type of inclusive perspective at the highest level of leadership?

But it’s not just on-screen content that Adriana is focusing her talents on. She is the author of  YA teen novel called ‘How To Hang A Witch’, a fictional story set in Salem, Massachusetts, where the infamous Salem Witch Trials took place. But we should also point out that the story is based on Adriana’s actual family history. You see, she is the direct descendent of the trial instigator, Cotton Mather. Her ancestors were also survivors from the Titanic, and came over to the United States on the Mayflower.

If it were up to the traditional Hollywood machine, a person with as unique a family background as Adriana might never get her story on the big screen or out in mainstream media. But now that she has her own production vehicle in Zombot Productions, you can be assured you will be hearing more about this badass gal! We asked her about being a woman in a not-so-woman-friendly environment, and how she plans to incorporate family history into her work in the future.


Why did you decide to create your own production company with your friends?

We were actually all on set together when James Bird, Anya Remizova, and I decided to start Zombot Pictures. We knew we wanted to keep making movies and that we wanted to do it with content we felt strongly about, diverse casts and crews, and with a whole lot of creative freedom. What started as an excited conversation turned into us making three features in three years.

We’ve seen a number of female actresses in Hollywood create their own companies out of frustration of not finding the kinds of roles they want to play. Do you resonate with this at all?

For sure. There is definitely a lack of variety of female roles in Hollywood. And I’m stubborn; so if I don’t see what I want available, I’m going to find a way to create it. One of the best things you can say to me is “You can’t.” Because I will then solely dedicate myself to getting it done. I love acting. And I want the roles I do to be both challenging and fulfilling.

How did the story for Honeyglue come about?

When we were working on our first feature, Eat Spirit Eat, Anya’s father passed away from cancer. Shortly after the production finished James started writing the script for Honeyglue. And despite the tragic nature of the subject, we wanted to make a film that celebrates life, not death. One of the biggest challenges of the making of Honeyglue was to keep it honest, while also weaving a narrative that leaves the audience with hope. This is really a film about living to the fullest and celebrating every moment with love and adventure.


You are also the author of ‘How to Hang A Witch’ and have a personal connection with the Salem With Trials. How did you discover this history and what made you want to write about it?

My ancestor, Cotton Mather, instigated the Salem Witch Trials. He was the third generation of Mather in America and I’m the twelfth. I always knew about my family history, good and bad. My great grandmother, Adrianna Storm Haxtun Mather, was a teacher and an amateur historian.

She collected a great deal of old family letters, furniture, and paintings. She wrote little notecards for everything explaining what each thing was. I’ve been reading her notecards my whole life, and creating my own stories about them. Now I’m just doing that in long form. And adding mystery, handsome boy ghosts, and fall themed pastries to the tales…obviously.


Your family were also Titanic survivors, and fought in the revolutionary war. How does this family history influence your choices as an artist creatively?

I hope to learn from them, from their mistakes and from their triumphs. ‘How to Hang a Witch’ parallels historical witch hanging with modern day bullying. “Witch” is used as a general labeling term. I write these stories about my ancestors to be entertaining, sure, but also to raise questions.

We seem to be at a tipping point in Hollywood with more awareness about the low statistics of female-driven stories, female directors, etc, but there is still a lot of criticism toward equality initiatives and the women pushing for this. What is your perspective on the need for more diverse and complex representations of women in front of and behind the camera?

More diversity, please. For my part, Zombot Pictures puts a strong emphasis on hiring both diverse casts and crews. Our company is comprised of two women and a Native American. We are particularly and personally aware of the systemic lack of diversity in Hollywood. I think real change has to come from both the employers and employees. We all need to do our part and we need to keep bringing awareness to the issue.


Keep up to date with Adriana by following her on Twitter, and follow everything her production company Zombot Pictures her doing by visiting the website.

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