Taking place in Asbury Park, New Jersey from April 16-17, TromaDance is truly an independent film fest like no other. Where else can you see wonderfully offbeat titles from around the globe, such as Dirty Martini (Spain), Lazer Ghosts 2: Return to Laser Cove (Canada), The Golden Nazi Vampire of Absam: Part II– The Secret of Kottlitz Castle (Germany) and, of course, Small Penis (Norway)? Also premiering will be the east coast premiere of the much buzzed-about Dutch horror film, The Human Centipede. You won’t find any pretentious art films here; just pure, unadulterated entertainment. Even better, all screenings are free and open to the public. (There is also no fee for moviemakers to submit their films to TromaDance).
TromaDance was founded in 2000 by B-movie legend Lloyd Kaufman, co-founder of Troma Entertainment, the independent production company behind such crazy cult classics as The Toxic Avenger.
The festival will begin on Friday, April 16 at 10 pm with a TromaDance fundraiser screening/New Jersey premiere of Kaufman’s Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead, followed by a Q&A with Kaufman. TromaDance will wrap the following day with an after party at the historic Asbury Lanes, featuring this year, for the first time, independent bowling. A film fest that ends with a bowling party? What more could you possibly ask?
MM recently caught up with Kaufman to discuss this year’s TromaDance festivities.
1. How does TromaDance differ most from the vast number of other independent film fests across the country?
TromaDance is the first film festival wholeheartedly devoted to filmmakers and fans. Unlike every other film festival, TromaDance does not charge filmmakers to submit their films. Entrance to all screenings is free and open to the public. Also, there are no VIP reservations or preferential treatment regarding films, panels, or parties of any kind given. The organizers of TromaDance believe films are meant to be seen, especially when it comes to new filmmakers. Art – in all its forms – is for the people!
TromaDance features a range of films made independently, usually without big stars, big money and far removed from the Hollywood studio system. The official selections of TromaDance have been made with nothing more than passion, courage, integrity, and raw talent.
Everyone at TromaDance is treated as an equal. The elite and the celebrated are treated no better or worse than the experimental filmmaker or the random moviegoer off the street. Admittance to all screenings, panels, parties, and events is strictly on a first come, first served basis. If there are any VIPs at TromaDance, they are the filmmakers whose blood, sweat, and hard work are on the screen.
TromaDance is an opportunity for everyone who’s ever picked up a camera to have their work seen without the compromises required by elitist cartel interference. TromaDance is proud to be the first and only film festival of the people, for the people, and by the people
Tromadance is the only truly independent film festival, run for the people and by the people! You do not have to pay an entry fee to submit your movie. There is no VIP policy. Everyone is treated equally, whether you’re a big celebrity or an obscure fan girl who turned her parents’ basement into a studio and shot a movie for a few bucks! Tromadance is taking place this year in Asbury Park, New Jersey, home of Bruce Springsteen, Bon Jovi, and Toxie on April 16-17, which are special Troma dates!
Please visit www.tromadance.com!
2. Are there any specific film premieres/events you’re looking forward to attending at this years festivities?
This year we have had 2,000 of the most outstanding indie movies submitted, the most in our 11 year history. The official Tromadance selections chosen by Program Director Jonathan Lees and his committee will be the main attraction. Also, the “Sell Your Own Damn Movie in the Digital Age Panel Discussion” with Larry Fessenden, Rolf Kanefsky, Dennis Dreith, will also be inspiring and educational. This year is also unique, because Tromadance has collaborated for the first time with IFC and we are pleased to be able to include the East Coast Premiere of Tom Six’s “The Human Centipede (First Sequence).” You won’t believe your eyes when you see this masterpiece!
Over the past 10 years, TromaDance has taken some criticism for the world famous orgies…er…after parties. The after party will be at Asbury Lanes where everyone can participate in Independent Out of Control Bowling, listen to New Jersey’s best bands, Toxie, the World Famous Tromettes and I will be there along with independent cocktails!
3. What aspect of TromaDance do you especially love? What’s your favorite TromaDance memory?
Everybody who comes to TromaDance comes because they love movies – for no other reason. There is no Sundance worship of Harry Winston Diamonds; no Tribecca star fucking. It’s all about loving movies, so the atmosphere is 100% idealistic. My fondest memories involve seeing how happy the filmmakers are when their movies are enjoyed by a big audience. Knowing that we helped make that possible is what I love.
4. How has TromaDance changed since it first started? Where do you see it heading in the future?
We began TromaDance in Park City to protest Sundance’s seeming to be a private reserve for vassals of the major studios like Miramax, Sony Classics, etc. We were disgusted by the nastiness there was towards genuine independent artists. In the early days, TromaDance volunteers were arrested in Sundance Land for handing out leaflets and behaving in a festive manner. TromaDance is now taken seriously by the media and the movie industry.
In our 11th year we have outgrown Park City and have moved to Asbury Park, New Jersey. In the future we hope to continue doing more and better what we have been doing. We also hope that TromaDance can play a small part in the renaissance of Asbury Park.
5. Anything else you’d like to add?
Because TromaDance is all free and all volunteer, there is no revenue so we rely on contributions and sponsors. You can contribute by visiting www.tromadance.com and scrolling to the “Donate” section on the left-hand side of your browser. If we can get 1,000 fans to contribute $20 each, we will have gone a long way towards meeting our budget. Please help us!