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Ishana Night Shyamalan admits she has an 'advantage' by being a 'nepo baby'

Ishana Night Shyamalan admits she has an 'advantage' by being a 'nepo baby'

The iconic director's daughter's new movie just landed in theatres

While a lot of the nepotism chatter in Hollywood comes alongside stars getting a place in front of the camera, Warner Bros' latest release sees a ‘nepo baby’ behind it.

Produced by Split director and plot-twist legend M. Night Shyamalan, The Watchers landed in theatres today (7 June).

Starring Dakota Fanning, it follows 28-year-old Mina who finds herself stranded in an eerie, untouched forest in western Ireland. And when she finds shelter, she ends up trapped alongside ‘three strangers who are watched and stalked by mysterious creatures each night’.

The movie is based on the novel by A.M. Shine and has been both written for the screen and directed by Ishana Night Shyamalan – the legendary psychological thriller director’s daughter.

This is Ishana’s directorial feature debut after having worked as a second unit director on her dad’s films Old and Knock at the Cabin.

Ahead of the movie’s release, the New York University graduate spoke to UNILAD about nepotism and her admirable approach to it.

“By nature of being born into this life and having a parent in the industry, there's definitely a sort of advantage stepping into the field, you just have that sense of being able to achieve it – I think as with any child pursuing their parent’s field,” the director-daughter of a director said.

Ishana says the conversation about ‘privilege’ is ‘totally valid’ and that it’s the ‘reaction to the privilege that matters’ and what standard people hold themselves to.

The Watchers is Ishana's directorial debut. (Warner Bros.)
The Watchers is Ishana's directorial debut. (Warner Bros.)

“I think filmmaking is not an easy thing to do by any means - and hopefully, the proof is in the pudding,” she added.

As both a young woman and a ‘nepo baby’, Ishana did feel some level of pressure creating The Watchers, but explained: “I enjoy walking into space where I have something to prove. It gives me some sense of ambition and something to move forward with.

"So, I just try to use that to kind of fuel me in whatever way I can."

While Ishana’s movie lands in theatres today, her sister Saleka will perform as pop musician Lady Raven in their dad’s flick Trap this August, which also features her original music.

How’s that for a nepo baby summer?

Fanning praised her as a director. (Warner Bros.)
Fanning praised her as a director. (Warner Bros.)

Calling Mina a character in the type of story she ‘certainly hadn’t done before’, Fanning also described director Ishana as a ‘lovely’ and ‘talented’ person who was ‘collaborative with everyone’ on set.

“She has a really bright energy about her and was always super present and ready to kind of, play," the star added.

"And I really appreciated that and was inspired by that. I'm happy, really happy to be a part of this feature film debut, because I do think it's the first of a great career that she’ll have.”

The Watchers is now in theatres.

Featured Image Credit: Gabe Ginsberg / Stringer/Steven Ferdman / Stringer

Topics: Hollywood, Film and TV