The cover art for Chopping Mall mesmerized me for years. During the mid 80s when Friday nights were spent at the local video store I would always slink away from my parents and sneak over to the horror section. I was addicted to the gross and gory covers and one day I was able to sneak this movie under my mother's nose. I watched Chopping Mall over... and over... and over... Its director was JIM WYNORSKI and he had me hooked. He was one of several directors who fuelled my love of genre and to this day I hold him in the highest regard.
His career began as an editor cutting trailers for Roger Corman and since his first film, The Lost Empire (1981) he has written, produced and directed an incredible catalogue of 150+ titles and given the B-world some of it's most outrageous creations. From Transylvania Twist to The Wasp Woman... Return of the Swamp Thing to Busty Cops... and most recently movies like Camel Spiders, Dinocroc Vs SuperGator and Piranhaconda. Jim's flare for kitsch is obvious and as you will see from the following interview, his tongue is planted firmly in his cheek. With a wicked sense of humour and a take-no-prisoners-fuck-off attitude Jim's legacy of trashy cult cinema continues.
Having my film idols give me their time still blows my mind and having Jim Wynorski on board is yet another box ticked. When I approached him for this interview he agreed and told me to make the questions interesting and not the "same' ol same' ol ones again"... well... I'm not sure I delivered but I at least asked the questions which I was interested to know...
What’s the last movie you watched?
Just this morning – JOURNEY TO THE 7TH PLANET. Loved it, despite the cheesy sets and efx.
What’s a question you’ve never been asked in an interview before?
What’s your Visa Credit Card number?
Would you care to answer it now?
4567 3456 2341 0066 (161 on reverse)
Would you consider coming to Australia to make Kangasaurus or Koalaconda?
I would love to go down under. I have a friend or two there. And yes, of course, let’s do MARSUPIAL! while I’m visiting.
You seem to always have something in the works. What can we expect from you next?
Here’s a list of the next five – all true titles:
THE SHARKANSAS WOMEN’S PRISON MASSACRE
HOT BODY INC.
THE DOUBLE D RANCH
Jim, thank you for taking the time. Your films have been in my psyche since I was 6 years old and they have helped fuel my love of genre.
AFTERWORD: I am curious about Jim's response to my question regarding exploitation films and whether or not they still exist. He names The Conjuring, The Call and You're Next as three recent examples... were this a live interview I would have probed this a little more. These types of horror movies have become almost staple and are now accepted in the mainstream and so I wonder if the definition "exploitation" has changed? I'm sure there is no concise answer but I'd been keen to hear some of your thoughts. Feel free to add comments below. Cheers - Shempy!