Troma Entertainment has churned out over a thousand films for B to Z movie fanatics. It has existed for almost 40 years, surviving in the outskirts of big production companies and consistently showing independent cinema that it’s possible to make entertaining films even with a paltry budget.
Lloyd Kaufman, Tromaville’s king and forefather, is an indie film hero who, ironically, mentored several mainstream directors. James Gunn, director of the critically acclaimed Guardians of the Galaxy, had his start in Troma Entertainment. As an acknowledgment to his roots, Gunn had Kaufman make a cameo appearance in the superhero blockbuster. In an interview with Movie Pilot, Kaufman shares his thoughts on how he and his production company have endured this long:
Net Neutrality/Open Internet is the last Democratic medium. It’s the last level playing field. It’s the last place where you have any chance of competing in a fair way, it gives Troma the same opportunity as Disney. Where does innovation start in the last ten years? Where would we be without Net Neutrality? You would not have Netflix, YouTube, or Kickstarter, not to mention all of these inventions and personalities.
Net Neutrality provides free information accessible to everyone, and this technological revolution became a game changer for almost all industries, including independent cinema. People can now watch movies online for free, and this is one of the main reasons why outfits like Troma Entertainment is experiencing a golden age. The internet gave them a way to rise beyond the clutches of mainstream cinema, to attract a larger audience that they never would have gained a decade back.
In addition to the advent of free internet, B-movie production companies have managed to hold on to their legacy because of film makers fearless enough to push the boundaries, and audiences genuine enough to embrace the quirks that make them different and a little bit geeky. Granted, indie films may not be for everyone, but for those who are forever fascinated by the strange, the bizarre, and the absurd, Troma Entertainment and other production outfits and online movie sites that offer B-movies will always be a home.
If you want to revisit Troma releases like Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead and The Toxic Avenger, you can watch movies online in free streaming sites like The Viewlorium, which has an extensive collection of cult classics and other movies.
(Source: Interview: Lloyd Kaufman’s Indie Rebellion, September 16, 2014)