Narciso “Chicho” Ibañez Serrador, the Spanish horror filmmaker and television pioneer, has passed away at the age of eighty-three.
Although he was responsible for just two feature films, both are outstanding entries in Spanish horror genre cinema: La Residencia (aka The House That Screamed, 1969) and ¿Quién puede matar a un niño? (aka Who Can Kill a Child?, 1975) and they led the way for genre auteurs of the future.
In Spain, Serrador is equally well-known for developing TV programmes such as the game show Un, dos, tres… responda otra vez, and the anthology horror series Historias para no dormir (“Stories to Keep You Awake”).
In February 2019, the Spanish Academy presented Ibáñez with an honorary Goya Award for lifetime achievement. The award was co-presented by a phalanx of genre filmmakers who were grateful for the inspiration that Serrador’s two movies provided: Alejandro Amenábar (The Others), J.A. Bayona (The Orphanage), Jaume Balagueró and Paco Plaza ([REC]), Rodrigo Cortés (Buried), Alex de la Iglesia (The Day of the Beast), Juan Carlos Fresnadillo (28 Weeks Later) and Nacho Vigalondo (Colossal).
J. A. Bayona issued this brief comment: “A capital figure of our cinema has gone. Master and teacher, he filmed a pair of masterpieces and we caught his love for the great classics of terror. RIP Narciso Ibáñez Serrador. Thanks for the laughter, the scares, the tears and the lessons in cinema.”