ByJessica Harmon, writer at Creators.co
The ultimate fangirl - spends most nights watching back-to-back old Buffy episosdes and complaining about being tired for work the next day.
Jessica Harmon

Remember the “Choose Your Own Adventure” books – how you could essentially dictate the direction the story goes? Well, MovieMaze™ is the film equivalent.
MovieMaze is the world’s first interactive movie app for mobile devices. An application (App) for smart phones, tablets, and other mobile devices, it acts as both a library and a platform for interactive content. It’s a lot of fun choosing how a film ends! A MovieMaze™ movie shows menus of choices at turning points in the story. The viewer’s choices determine what happens next. Simply put, the viewer creates his or her own movie by touching the screen. Best of all, the app is available right around the world!


MovieMaze will be releasing their new episode ‘The Plumber’ – a cartoonishly enjoyable horror/science-fiction hybrid – in mid-February on iTunes and other outlets. It will officially premiere at Amazing Arizona, Phoenix on Feb 13-15.
Before the big convention bow, we spoke to MovieMaze™’s Erik Lundmark and Maria Collis about what we can expect from this latest episode, The Plumber.


For those who aren’t tech-savvy, can you explain how MovieMaze™ works?
Sure. You pick a MovieMaze™ movie to play. The movie plays for a couple minutes, and then the main character is faced with a choice. A menu pops up with 2 or 3 options. You pick a menu option for the main character, and that scene plays. Sometimes the scene you chose will lead to the next decision point in the story. Sometimes it’s a dead end. If you get through the MovieMaze™, you get to see a whole story. There are always at least 3 different branches to each MovieMaze™ story, so even if you get to the end of one branch, you can start over and find your way to another. And sometimes you can even jump storylines. Kind of like a video game with real actors--and no win or lose, just entertainment.

The Plumber is the second episode. Is that right? What happens in this one?
Right. In this second MovieMaze™ movie, Toulouse Toutite is just an ordinary plumber who gets a call for a job. He shows up at an office building. As soon as he gets in the lobby, a tied-up, gagged guy in his underwear runs by, drops a cell phone, and disappears down the hall. The cell phone rings. Now you decide: Does the Plumber answer the cell phone or ignore it? Depending on what you choose, the Plumber will embark on a different adventure. He may meet a beautiful but cranky mermaid who will send him on a mission to save the world from aliens or stop a Captain Hook-type pirate from blowing up a theme park. He may end up in the middle of the desert, battling a coven of cannibalistic witches. Sometimes it’s a happy ending, sometimes not so much. Along the way, the Plumber may get blown up, shot, eaten by a monster, or sucked down a toilet. Anytime you hit a dead end, the Plumber goes back to the last decision point, and you try again. It may sound scary, but it’s all played for laughs. In fact, some of the best jokes are in the crazy dead ends!

How many different options do we have to choose from?
There are about 60 menu options to choose from in The Plumber.
Are the episodes structured like a normal movie – scripted and so on?
Absolutely! Each scene was written to fit into the overall story. The actors often had to play the same scene in different ways. For example, sometimes a character helps the Plumber, and in another scene, the same character pulls a weapon on him. It’s a real challenge for the actors to keep track of who and what they are in a given scene, but it’s also a lot of fun. And, of course, there’s room for improvisation. Some bits were added because the actors came up with them on the set, and they were so hilarious we couldn’t resist including them.

Is the goal to come up with the wackiest, most fun story you can?
For these first two titles,--“The Mechanic” and “The Plumber”--yes. Fantastic situations and wacky surprises will always be part of MovieMaze™. But our next title will be a horror story. It’s called “The Babysitter,” and we’re making it because our fans kept asking us for a horror title, and we happen to have some great horror writers on our team. After “The Babysitter,”… who knows? With MovieMaze™, the possibilities are endless!

Have there been any hurdles to overcome in the creation of MovieMaze?
The hardest part was reigning in our imaginations to stay within our budget! The branching storyline is a challenging form to work in, because you have to deliver a punch line or an action effect every minute throughout the story. And the actors have to keep track of their characters’ different story arcs too. But it’s loads of fun, and we like to think we get better at it with each new movie.


What’s the goal with the brand – do you envision a big screen movie spin-off some time? Maybe a series of books?
We’d like to be the next Facebook! That is, we want to be THE APP that everyone has. We want to be the Kleenex® of mobile interactive entertainment. That said, big screen spin-off? Why not! As we become more of a household word, we expect to work with bigger budgets and bigger stars. A big screen MovieMaze™ is a logical extension of that. Same thing with books: If there’s a demand for it, we’ll do it.

Find out more about MovieMaze™ at http://www.movie-maze.com/

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