While your typical Bondi 20-something juggles life and love, Riley Fox juggles something more… undead. But Riley’s not just any vampire slayer, she’s the Bondi Slayer (AUS).

Creator, Writer and Lead Actor, Victoria Beck spoke to Melbourne Webfest about this blood-pumping, fang-tastic, high-stakes series (puns very much intended).

What are some of your favourite pieces of vampire & vampire hunter fiction? How did they inspire Bondi Slayer?

Buffy the Vampire Slayer was definitely an inspiration and there are nods to Buffy throughout our series, e.g “The Buffy Award” in episode 7 for the slayer with the most kills. Another current series that influenced Bondi Slayer is the Neflix show “Glow” – Gorgeous ladies of wrestling. The production design, wardrobe and makeup brief for our 80’s dance scene in episode 3 references “Glow”. This is possibly one of my favourite scenes in Bondi Slayer. 

Bondi Slayer Trailer

Which characters have your favourite character dynamic in the series and why?

There are so many wonderful characters in Bondi Slayer. I had this terrible habit of writing new characters and we ended up with 26. I particularly enjoy Emma Leonard’s portrayal of Riley’s sister Cath. She’s one of the few character’s who can reign Riley in and thoroughly enjoys torturing her little sis in episode 6. Stacey the dance instructor in episode 3 is another fun character to watch; her physicality is amazing. Also, Kristy the Paddington Slayer brings a very different dynamic to Riley. I like that both slayers are polar opposites.     

How long have you been working on your series? 

From creation to completion the series took roughly 18 months. The development phase was very brief. After I completed the script a production company, Toybox Films, reached out. They loved the concept and decided to shoot the entire series. We jumped into production about 4 weeks later which is not a long time to secure cast, crew and locations. That’s when I got a crash course in producing! The shoot spanned over 4 months as we scheduled around cast and crews existing work. We were fortunate that several local Bondi businesses supported the production; North Bondi’s Rocker (my local restaurant and bar) offered their premises for filming, Museum Clothing loaned clothes for Wardrobe. After we wrapped, we had a 6 month break in which I hustled for post production funding. Once our Screen Australia funding came through post took roughly 6 weeks. We proceeded to hold a private screening at the Golden Age Cinema and drank cocktails!  

What was your release strategy?  

We dropped all 7 eps on YouTube for Halloween.

What was your greatest challenge creating the series?

The greatest challenge for myself was learning to juggle my producer, writer and actor hats. Most shoot days I would be running around picking up props and SFX makeup, or learning fight choreography right before filming my scenes. There wasn’t any down time to relax and get in the zone before I had to jump in front of the camera.

I remember the day we shot the flamingo scene, (I decided to write in the flamingo prop the night before shooting). When I arrived on set I realised I didn’t have an air pump, so I was running around the local stores asking if anyone could help blow up this life-size flamingo. It turned out the local grocer had a tracker underneath the store and we could attach a funnel that would blow air into the flamingo.  So here I was in the basement of my local grocery store, blowing up this giant flamingo 5 minutes before shooting ha. It was worth it though, the flamingo looked awesome!

What is the future for your series? 

I’d love for Bondi Slayer to be developed into a half hour series. I’ve already written 4x 22 mins episodes and they are wild.