Today’s Latino Blogger Profile is with LatinHorror.com, a fast-growing network of horrorphiles, with a focus on the contributions of hispanic horror movies. “Freaky” filmaker and artist Edwin Pagan, Founder of LatinHorror.com, talks about how LatinHorror.com began, and why it’s become so popular.
HPRB: Tell us about your self, any relevant journalism experience you have and why you started your blog?
LATIN HORROR: I started taking photos in the South Bronx in the mid 1980s, and then began writing for local newspapers in the early 90s and combined both skill sets to expand my parameters as an artist, and made myself an asset to the publications. As a filmmaker, I’ve also produced several films and worked a great deal as a cinematographer, which was an outgrowth of my photography. I’m currently working on a documentary about the arson-for-hire fraud fires that took place in the South Bronx in the 1970s called “BRONX BURNING,” and also working on an group photo exhibit with five other acclaimed photographers who grew up there during those years and documented the region from an insiders point-of-view entitled “LOS SIES DEL SUR,” that is scheduled for late 2011.
LATIN HORROR started initially in 2008 out of the desire to expose the contributions that Latinos have made to horror (like George A. Romero and Guillermo Del Toro), and to also have acknowledge that fact that we also have our own distinct genre – Latin horror, which very much like Giallo (Italian horror), Japanese horror (J-horror) or Korean horror, is grounded in the roots and idiosyncrasies of our culture. LATIN HORROR (the website) began because I was looking for something that would satisfy me creatively as a Latino, filmmaker, and life-long horrorphile, and realized it didn’t exist. And I knew that if I was looking to establish contact with other like-minded people there was an untapped need for such a network to fill the void – and, fortunately, I was right.
The reason the website has gained such a large number of subscribers in such a short period — Latin and non-Latin horror fans alike — is due to the fact that you had all these “dark creative expressionists,” and their fan base trying to connect but left without the option of how to do it. LATIN HORROR just happened to come along at the right time and provided a venue for that desire in a very distinct way.
HPRB: Who is the target audience of your blog and what data can you provide us about the size of your audience?
LATIN HORROR: Our primary target audience is the average horror fan. Our specialty, of course, is covering what is taking place in the Latin horror space, as well as the artists working in the genre and bringing that information to its fan base, which is a broad and diverse market. It’s an established fact that Latinos turn out in over-indexed numbers to watch films, particularly horror films. In 2009, 37 million Latin moviegoers bought 300 million tickets — an average of eight tickets a year per patron — the highest of any ethnic group.
Most recently, Latinos accounted for the enormous success for Lionsgate’s possession-driven film, THE LAST EXORCISM, where post-weekend exit polls concluded that 54% of the movie-going audience was Latino/a (!) – turning a low budget indie film (1.8 million) into a 20+ million box-office success (double that to date). The post-weekend polls additionally demonstrated that a large portion of that patronage was composed of women, which is traditionally contradictory when compared to other cultures that patronize horror. We were a partial contributor to that success via the deserving positive review we published about the film, and the promotional giveaways we engaged leading up the film’s release with the publicity entity of record for the production, 42nd West.
HPRB: What makes your blog unique and when did you first start blogging?
LATIN HORROR: Our niche is Latin horror and we’ve focused exclusively on that sector and have become the prime entry point for its fan base and a value-added resource for the marketing and publicity outlets looking to reach them.
The most unique aspect of our website is that we are the only online venue dedicated to covering the genre of Latin horror in addition to the traditional horror realm. And our profiles and movie reviews are not simply truncated extractions of the press release – if we cover the content, we provide an in-depth analysis of what we review (latinhorror.com/onthehorrizon/losojosdejulia) and who we profile (latinhorror.com/miedodigested/peppernegron). Something that is becoming progressively more rare in today’s age of watered-down aggregated content in entrainment news. As a result, we get horror fans looking to be engaged and informed beyond the hyperbole of tag lines. By providing that service, we have developed a loyal readership and fan base that is looking to become informed of a pending and potential entertainment outlet whether it’s a film, book, event, or dark artist in either the Latin horror or mainstream horror sectors.
HPRB: Do you have any accompanying Twitter, Facebook or other social media contact information you would like to share?
LATIN HORROR: LATIN HORROR has a healthy presence in the social network space. Fans of Latin horror can friend us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and join us on Myspace. The fastest way to reach us is by going to latinhorror.com and finding our social networking “chicklet” icons in the upper-right hand corner of the page that point you to all our social real estate online. The best way to begin getting our content is to register at latinhorror.com/register
HPRB: What is your blog’s web address and how frequently do you update your posts?
LATIN HORROR: LATIN HORROR can be reached online at http://latinhorror.com. Our website is updated daily as new reviews and profiles are posted, events notices, or trailers are teased into the public space.
HPRB: What is the key contact information for you and or your blog?
LATIN HORROR: Edwin Pagan. firstname.lastname@example.org / 646-234-0958
HPRB: What are the best days and hours to reach you and/or your staff with a specific type of story or interview? What are the worst days/times?
LATIN HORROR: Regular business days and hours are best. But we are open to the fact that there are varied time zones and that the business of horror doesn’t take a rest, so we also don’t mind getting a call about topics of special interest or exclusive news that’s breaking on the horror front. Additionally, we check all electronic correspondence 7-days a week to ensure we don’t miss important communication from the field or avoid missing “of interest” suggestions from our subscribers and fan base.
HPRB: What are your policies in terms of accepting press kits, photos and/or multimedia video files?
LATIN HORROR: Press kits and publicity photos are accepted at email@example.com. In regard to large multimedia and video files, the best practice is to first send us a URL (link) to an online streaming version of materials as part of the letter of introduction, email and/or press materials. Depending on the scope of the review or profile we are undertaking, we will coordinate getting the high-resolution files via an ftp file transfer portal.
HPRB: Is there anything you would like to add about your blog or about working with you?
LATIN HORROR: Since the people who started the website are artists first and foremost, we love to collaborate creatively with our partners and clients in reaching the best possible message and for getting their message out to the market in a manner that speaks to their passion and fascination which is grounded in horror, the macabre, and gothic arts.