Troma films have a very special place in my heart. If there’s anything anyone knows about me, it’s that love trashy schlocky movies. Those grindhouse type films that are made with next to no budget but more heart and soul than any mainstream film you’re likely to go see. Troma is the Godfather of these types of films. Lloyd Kaufman and his crew have given us films so shocking and left of center that it would give even satirists like Matt Stone and Trey Parker reason to pause. Movies like The Toxic Avenger or Tromeo and Juliet or even Poultrygeist are the pinnacle of B-grade schlock and at the same time as cinematically classic as anything the AFI’s Top 100 movie list. You’re doing yourself a disservice by not watching any of these films.
The panel itself was short and sweet and featured the Lloyd himself with several of his collaborators and recurring characters. Troma as a studio has been producing films for going on 45 years now and shows no signs of taking it easy. Kaufman is very candid about the types of movies he makes and also shows no shame in making sure the audience knows that some of the biggest entertainers today got their start in Troma films. James Gunn, who is responsible for the Guardians of the Galaxy films, got his start in 1993 writing the script for Tromeo and Juliet. Samuel L Jackson appears in Def By Temptation which is a film that really has to be seen to be believed. Billy Bob Thorton acted in a Troma film called Chopper Chicks in Zombietown. Kaufman is very proud of all the work that Troma has done and despite not having a lot of funds for future works, debuted a trailer for the next Troma film called Shakespeare’s Shitstorm. He said that this acts a sort of spiritual sequel to Tromeo and Juliet while amping up the comedy and raunch. He also revealed that the original Toxic Avenger is getting the big budget remake treatment with the script being penned by Macon Blair. Blair is famous for penning indie thrill fests such as Blue Ruin and Green Room. Kaufman said that he has a producer credit on the film but is not that entirely involved in the process of bringing it to life.
The panel comes to an end at this point, the whole panel was just short of 30 minutes. It was a really short panel, just a quick conversation with one of the most prominent provocateurs of trashy cinema in the industry. He was a very amiable dude who was really proud of everything that he’s accomplished and showed no signs of slowing down. Shakespeare’s Shitstorm looks like the pinnacle of everything they’ve accomplished up until this point. He also reminded everyone to stop by the Troma booth for free selfies and autographs. He said that he would never charge his fans for such things because without his fans he wouldn’t be here today. So, if you ever get the chance to meet Lloyd Kaufman take it or at the very least search out one of his films. I promise you it is an experience unlike anything you’ve taken in before. I got the chance to stop by the booth and meet the man and his team and I was just as star struck and in awe of him as I would be had I met RDJ.