Interview with Blake Fitzpatrick, author, game designer and CEO of Monumental Pictures

Blake Fitzpatrick is a man who is dedicated to the arts. As a painter, sculptor, musician, cartoonist, published novelist, the founder of an online “joke generator” website called “Jesterate”, and the CEO of the movie production house Monumental Pictures, Blake is always creating and/or contributing to the field of entertainment. His staple company, Monumental Pictures, was founded in 1996 and has since produced several films in various genres; most of which have transgressive plots that tackle experimental and/or controversial subject such as police stalking and true crime—namely, the crimes of infamous characters like quack doctor Linda Burfield Hazzard. The company’s most recent film endeavor is an animated movie called “Lucidland” about a girl who uncovers the truth about her brother’s bed through a series of odd “dreams” which may, in fact, not be dreams at all. In addition to his work in movies, Blake also developed a video game. He was pleased to discuss these exciting projects.

Meagan Meehan (MM) of Movie Vine: What made you decide to establish Monumental Pictures?

Blake Fitzpatrick (BF): Monumental Pictures was directly inspired by “Singing in the Rain.” The film industry changes entirely in that film and that’s really what our company is about; changing things and being a new generation of film production by making things of alternative interests.

MM: What kinds of movies do you make and how many have been produced to date?

BF: We pride ourselves in making things that are different. Discarding the fifty or so odd 8mm films I made as a child, we have produced or are producing ten feature films to date since we incorporated in 1996.

MM: How do you find your scripts?

BF: I write everything that we produce from scratch. We do not accept outside material. It helps keep us different from other studios.

MM: You produced a movie about the infamous quack doctor murderess Linda Burfield Hazzard. Her life story is truly shocking. Hence, how true-to-life was your thriller?

BF: We are currently producing a film about her and are still looking for investors. Nobody knows what happened for sure when her “School of Health” burned to the ground in Ollala Washington in 1935. Creative liberties were taken to make the film more interesting, but everything is based off documented history. In fact, a Seattle physician who treated one of her patients, a civil engineer who starved to death on his watch when he arrived at his hospital, narrates parts of the film and against his affright pursues the sanitarium. I would like Sid Haig to play that part. Bill Oberst Jr. is already attached to play Samuel Christian Hazzard and we are looking into Dee Wallace (ET) or Barbara Crampton (Re-animator) to play Linda.

MM: Monumental Pictures is now planning to release an animated film called “Lucidland.” What is it like to work with animation opposed to live actors?

BF: The company started with an 8mm camera and splicer, but now we have the resources to make a high quality animated feature film. After filming began on “Lucidland” I never wanted to work with actors again. I don’t mean to sound like an asshole, but puppets do exactly what you want them to do. The downside, of course, is the time involved in making said puppets do what you want them to do.

MM: You also founded a “joker generator” website called Jesterate. What is a “joke generator” and how come you established such a site? Can people submit jokes to the system?

BF: They sure can, and the jokes will be added to our database immediately. Life is tough. I figured that since we have something such as google to generate answers to all kinds of things that there should be a website that can bring immediate cheer to people who are depressed at the push of a button. That’s how Jesterate was born.

MM: You have published a novel. What is it about and how did you find a publisher?

BF: I’m writing a second novel right now. It’s a thriller. My first one was an apocalyptic thriller about a failed writer who decides to commit suicide. Right before he goes through with it, he finds out that a comet beyond the size of Jupiter is going to collide with earth in thirty days. So, he decides to document what happens until the end of humanity. Finding a publisher is impossible unless you can learn to physically network. Not online, but in person. Go to conventions and meet people. If you do enough of them, you will eventually find someone willing to publish your work.

MM: You’re working on a video game now. Can you please tell me a little bit about its plot? Have you found any possible developers/distributors yet?

BF: I finished the video game in 2013. It’s called “Love Gun 2: Knee Deep in Poon” and it’s a parody of the early first person shooters like “Doom”. It takes place in 1995 when Bill Clinton was president and is quickly becoming a cult favorite because of Hillary’s recent loss in the presidential election. It’s available for free on gamejolt.

MM: Where do you want to take your career from here?

BF: I have no idea. When I get an idea, I run with it and I don’t stop until I finish it. I’ve always been that way. My new documentary “Lewd Enforcement” is proving to be pretty dangerous territory. Hopefully I can finish it and be able to make more films.

MM: What advice can you give to someone who is aspiring to become a creator?

BF: Don’t ever listen to anyone that tells you that you cannot do something. You are capable of doing anything. Only your mind can stop you from creating what you want. If you have something to say, say it. Don’t ever let anything stand in your way of doing so.

MM: Is there anything else that you would like to mention?

BF: Yes, “Abaddon” is a free public domain film being made for the public for free consumption funded currently through Indiegogo. We’re also on the lookout for a producer/investor for the Linda Burfield Hazzard movie. Also, “Trilogie De Tragedie” is just starting its film fest run.

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To learn more about Monumental Pictures, visit their official website and IMBD. To check out his game, see here. To help fund the “Abaddon” film, see its Indiegogo link here.

Meagan Meehan

Meagan J. Meehan is a published author, poet, cartoonist and produced playwright. She pens columns for the Great South Bay Magazine, Examiner and AXS. She is also a stop motion animator and an award-winning abstract artist. Meagan holds a Bachelors in English Literature and a Masters of Communication. She is an animal advocate and a fledging toy and game designer.
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