About Adam Jahnke and the Electric Theatre


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So this is the part of the website where I’m supposed to talk about myself in the third person and convince you how brilliant and talented I am, right?  Yeah, I won’t be doing that.  Let me just give you the headlines.

I was born in Bemidji, Minnesota.  Bemidji is about 100 miles south of Canada, which is probably why people sometimes look at me funny when I say words like “about”.  I spent most of my first ten years there (the parts I remember, anyway), at which point I moved to Bozeman, Montana.  I claim both states as my own and so far no one’s complained.

After I graduated from high school, I attended Montana State University in Bozeman, majoring in film.  I grew disillusioned with it after a couple years and dropped out.  Eventually I went back to school, this time as an English major at the University of Iowa in Iowa City.  This is where I decided to pursue writing full-time.  I took a minor in Theatre, concentrating on playwriting.

After Iowa, I moved to Seattle and ultimately made my way down to Los Angeles where I hooked up with the good people at Troma Entertainment.  I started as the assistant to the L.A. Director of Operations but before long, Lloyd Kaufman (president of Troma Entertainment and creator of the Toxic Avenger) took a shine to me.  He found out I could write and from that moment on, I was writing essays for the Troma website (still archived there in the Lloyd’s Roids section), press releases, and scripts.  I did a teeny-tiny bit of work on Citizen Toxie: The Toxic Avenger IV.  I wrote the narration that bookends the film and one of the high points at Troma was when I saw the finished film and heard Stan “The Man” Lee reading the narration.  The first big project was a 20-episode TV series called Troma’s Edge TV for Channel 4 in the UK.  I wrote every episode of the damn thing.  I’m still not sure how.

As Edge TV wrapped up, Lloyd approached me about writing his second book with him.  We roped Trent Haaga (actor/writer/producer/indie film icon) into helping us out by providing his perspective at various points.  The result, Make Your Own Damn Movie!, has become something of a cult classic amongst books of its type (although I should add that while there are literally hundreds of how-to books about low-budget independent filmmaking, there aren’t any quite like this one), now in its 8th printing.  Oh yeah, clicking on the covers here will take you to Amazon where you can order a copy.  I encourage you to click on the covers.

Anyway, Lloyd was happy with how MYODM turned out and asked me to do another book.  Glutton for punishment that I am, I agreed and set to work adapting Lloyd’s 1985 movie The Toxic AvengerThe Toxic Avenger: The Novel (as we cleverly titled it) was released in April of 2006 to a mostly confused audience who didn’t know what to make of it.  I like it, though, and so do most people who bother to read it.

In addition to all that, I joined the writing staff of The Digital Bits in 2000, reviewing DVDs, contributing interviews and generally making a nuisance of myself.  The Electric Theatre started as an electronic newsletter sent to a few friends who claimed to be interested in what I thought about current theatrical releases.  Like so many things, it grew beyond my control and is now the website you’re currently wasting precious time on.  Since we were just talking about books, Bill Hunt and Todd Doogan wrote one too, The Digital Bits Insider's Guide To DVD.  Some of my reviews are reprinted in it, so why don’t you order one of those, too?  Your Adam Jahnke library won’t be complete without it.

These days I’m working on a number of screenplays that are in various stages of development.  Any information about these or any other projects will show up on the News page here, so keep your fingers crossed that I’ll have to update it frequently.  If you want to contact me for whatever reason, my e-mail’s at the bottom of the page.  Thanks for stopping by.

Your pal,
Adam Jahnke