We had the good fortune of connecting with Brendan Petrizzo and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Brendan, what role has risk played in your life or career?
Risk taking is just something that comes with the job. When I left DC and moved to New York I had no idea what it would be like. I just knew I wanted to do film. By making that leap I was able to push myself to find out how to make my dream happen. Within three months I had found myself working on a feature film called Zombie With A Shotgun. It was a very exciting moment as I realized that I had gotten my foot in the door (sort of. Soon after I was pulled into a documentary film called Madonna And The Breakfast Club by the help of a good friend. This is when I started realizing that in theory the more you push the more doors open up for you. By the winter I started to realize that I wanted to be making bigger films in LA and that while I loved the city LA was where I should be. That spring I moved to LA it was yet another big “risk” I didn’t know very many people and I had $700. But if it’s meant to be it’s meant to be. I got to LA and things started happening. I was cast in Disney a show within two weeks of moving, soon after I was back in the production world working on a Lifetime movie. Fast forward two or three years I have created a new company called Atomic Blonde Entertainment. The same applies every day I MUST take risks in order to breath life into these crazy projects wether it’s dealing with a name actor, locations, the constant script changes everything is a risk and that’s what makes it fun and exciting.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Looking at what I have done so far it can be easy to go ahh ok you make THOSE movies. BUT what I can say is that I am proud of every single one of the little gremlins that i’ve worked on. Getting to where I am has not been easy and I have had many challenges I have had to over come. Each challenge that I deal with I find, I always learn something new that will help me in the future. I also might learn something. I am set a part from most people because I have a love for these crazy films. I really enjoy doing them. Growing up I was a massive fan of grindhouse films & exploitation films. Roger Corman was another major influence that I had. I came to learn that these movies really were memorable that most things out there today. Think about it, will you remember that movie that won an Academy Award in 2013 or will you remember sharks flying in a tornado? When COVID came up I took much needed time off to revamp plan for the future and create my own company Atomic Blonde Entertainment. The goal of this company is to reinstitute these type of movies that you would see back at a drive in theater or run down movie theater.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I happen to be lucky and have friends all over the world. This is amazing when it comes to traveling but there comes a time where those friends want to come to LA to visit. I make sure to take them to places other people might over look. Why do a beach day in Santa Monica when you could drive up the coast to Malibu spend a day on the beach then have dinner at Habana Cafe. I am a massive fan of coffee, so I always make sure to show people Melrose Ave and take them to my favorite coffee shop Toasted And Roasted. If you walk behind the shops on Melrose you will find some amazing street art that people tend to miss. Another great place to explore is the old Griffith Park zoo. I’m not saying you should go at night but it really is a great place if you’re looking for an adventure. If you want to take someone to a nice brunch I always recommend the Elysee Cafe in Westwood. They have amazing food, and great coffee. When it comes to nightlife the best places to go would be Davy Waynes. It’s as if you stepped into the world of Paul Thomas Anderson right after he did Inherent Vice. It has a great 1970s vibe with a modern twist. After this I always make sure to bring people to Clifton’s in Downtown LA. This multi level bar (and hidden tiki bar) offers a wide variety of music that will keep you there all night long.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would love to shoutout my favorite studio The Asylum for all of the support they have given me over the years. They are SO much fun and EXTREMELY supportive of everyone who walks in their doors. The nice thing about them is they will push you to progress even if you think you need to hold yourself back. I would also like to shoutout Lauren Elizabeth Hood, James Mahoney, Jose Montesinos & Anthony Ferrante for being amazing mentors over the years when it comes to production and producing.
Nicklas Hansen & Brendan Petrizzo