Film Courage: Josephina, you grew up in Romania?
Film Courage: Off-camera you were telling some interesting things about movie going in general during the time you were there?
Josephina: It’s a lot to talk about but I can tell you it was censorship going on (a lot of censorship). Obviously, I did not grow up with a lot of Hollywood movies that were modern. Basically I was watching a lot of Romanian movies that were made in Romania or other communist made movies. So more like Hollywood movies from the 40’s, musicals, dramas and things like that. But not a lot of mainstream movies like ROCKY or John Hughes movies or things that I had to catch up with after I moved here. Also no horror movies because those were forbidden during communism because the dictator that we had didn’t want to be compared to one of the monsters like Dracula or Frankenstein from the horror movies, but of course because still compared him with that. So that is why he banned all of the horror movies at that time. Once again, that’s kind of strange because I am making horror movies but I didn’t grow up with that. Obviously I had a lot of catching up to do after I moved here and started to work in the industry…(Watch the video interview on Youtube here).
Born in Bucharest, Romania, Josephina fell in love with film from a young age, encouraged by her uncle, a Director of Photography for the National Television channel. Spending her childhood on soundstages and screening rooms created a passion for storytelling that led her to attend the National Film School in 1995. While there, she organized international film festivals, worked as a copywriter, and wrote several 35mm shorts. She also spent a semester at La FEMIS film school in Paris, France in 1998 after being awarded a scholarship by the French Foreign Ministry. After graduating with a major in screenwriting, she worked for the country’s two largest film studios, Castel Film and Media Pro Pictures. Since relocating to Los Angeles in 2001, Josephina continued to work in film, both as a screenwriter and in production on indie features including BACK BY MIDNIGHT, LORD OF THE VAMPIRES, THE HALFWAY HOUSE and GRAND JUNCTION. In 2004, together with her husband, writer/director Brad Sykes, founded Nightfall Pictures, a full-service development and production company. She has since produced four feature films, thriller WITHIN THE WOODS, drama COLD ONES (starring C. Thomas Howell and Geoffrey Lewis) and the sci-fi actioner MUTATION.