Even though Shea has worked almost exclusively in the low budget independent world, her work has started trends which resonate through larger budget studio movies. Poison Ivy, which was a significant video hit and boasts the highest turns per copy in video history, inspired dozens of imitators. Stripped to Kill started a genre of stripper thrillers. Dance of the Damned has been called the precursor to Interview With the Vampire. Andrew Sarris has praised her "kinetic talent combined with a flare for complex narrative. Ms. Shea does little things so well that big meanings flow out of them. Peter Travers adds, The emotional resonance, visual sophistication and strong subtext of Shea's work fuse to create a distinctive style worth monitoring, describing her work as a wild ride with the top down into unchartered territory."
Shea credits Roger Corman for giving her a start. She also credits her collaborators, including directors of photography Phedon Papamichael and Oscar winner Janusz Kaminsky, for much of her success. She has also been championed by acclaimed veteran directors Sydney Pollack and Francis Ford Coppola.
Before making the move to writing and directing, Shea appeared in a small number of features, including Scarface and Psycho 3. Her appearance as the Deputy DA in The Rage: Carrie 2 marks the first time Shea has appeared in one of her own films.
Shea intermittenly teaches a comprehensive course in directing at UCLA Extension and is on their Advisory Board.
Katt Shea Facts