She consistently puts on crazy movie events, which I mention on here all the time.
She loves bad movies even more than I do.
She’s the Midnight Movie Mamacita!
(Imagine that part in a fun B-movie font.)
The International Horror & SciFi Film Festival is coming up this weekend. I know, it feels like it was just here. That’s because last year it was it’s own deal, and this year it’s part of the Phoenix Film Festival.
I figured this was the perfect time to spotlight Arizona’s own master of cult cinema, Andrea Brown, so I did!
So tell us what you do as the Midnight Movie Mamacita.
Essentially I’m an Independent Film Programmer. So, I take movies that I think people would want to experience in a Theater and on the Big Screen (new and old) and I coordinate with the distributors and venue to book the film.
I then Promote and advertise the screening and run the actual 35mm or Digital film when the big night arrives. So it’s the full process from start to finish, a lot of work but a lot of fun!
When did you know you were a cult movie junkie?
Ohhh, that’s a tough one!
Well I think it was at a sleepover in my teens when my girlfriends and I would watch Horror movies. I hadn’t been exposed to them before and I was utterly fascinated by flicks like Childs Play, Swamp Thing & Hellraiser. So those definitely whet my appetite as did a late night television airing (also at a sleepover) of a Boy and His Dog.
So I think the fascination started in my teens and blossomed when my friends and I were old enough to attend the yearly shlock-fest, the Incredibly Strange Film Festival (in Auckland, New Zealand), which was the film highlight of every year.
What do you think it is about these films that gives them their crazy charm?
I think it’s their independent spirit. Especially the exploitation films from the 60s and 70s. They were so renegade, just filming whenever or wherever they could. So you have this really amazing time capsule of America that is so raw and real, which arose essentially due to lack of money (to afford expensive locations, sets, costumes etc).
I’m a complete retro-freak, I am fascinated with those eras, so being able to see them on film in such an uncompromising way is a total treat.
How did you find your place in the film world?
Film Programming is such an elusive thing to get in to. First off, it’s like an old boys club in a lot of ways. There are few Woman Film Programmers out there.
I slowly began networking and connecting with people that were doing Repertory screenings and graciously I was allowed to enter the club.
Buying 35mm film prints was a great way to meet other collectors and learn a lot about what is available the correct way to go about licensing films for the events.
So it was all through hard work and determination, I know that sounds super cheesy, but it’s definitely not something you really go to school for.
How is going to an MMM screening different than just “going to the movies?”
Well, first off we try to program films that aren’t playing theatrically in the Valley, so we like to provide that service to people.
Then we try to make it more about the experience. You know that you will be seeing a film with like-minded folks that are as passionate about the films as you are.
We have a preshow/intermission loop of trailers and quirky videos to keep you entertained and giveaways from our awesome sponsor, Bookmans.
Bringing out talent with cast and crew is also a big part of what we do. Giving people a chance to interact with their idols is one of my favorite parts of the job.
Tell us about some projects you’re excited about.
Right now I’m super excited about the new venue.
This year the Midnite Movie Mamacita celebrates 5 years of Independent Film Programming. Ever since I started doing this the goal has been to cultivate enough of a following to one day be able to sustain a venue. So within the next few months we should have some exciting news to announce on a new permanent home within the Valley.
Also we have the International Horror & Sci Fi Film Festival this week! Really excited with the awesome Competition and Showcase selections we have to offer this year, I think people will be really satisfied with the films and shorts.
Plus I direct the Horror Track for the Phoenix Comicon, so we have some really fun panels and guests lined up for the Zombie Walk, Beauty Pageant, plus Elvira!
So, I have a lot of stuff that I’m really excited to see come to fruition in 2011!
And when you’re not MMM-ing, what are you enjoying?
I love to travel and explore. I love the desert and small towns and roadside attractions. I also love spending time with my friends and family, day drinking and going to Film Festivals.