Producer of New Nightmare
American producer of Italian descent Marianne Maddalena is known as the co-founder of the independent production company Craven-Maddalena Films, along with professional partner Wes Craven. Starting out as a personal secretary for Craven in 1986, she has since produced/executive produced a number of films directed by Craven, including the “Scream” trilogy, “Music of the Heart” (1999), Dracula 2000” (2000), “Cursed” (2005), “Red Eye” (2005) and the forthcoming “Shocker” (2009). She even picked up an Independent Spirit nomination for her work in “New Nightmare” (1994). The graceful producer has also worked for other directors in such films as the remake “The Hills Have Eyes” (2006), “The Breed” (2006), “The Hills Have Eyes II” (2007) and “The Last House on the Left” (2008). Her TV credits include the 1992 series “Nightmare Cafe” and the TV movies “Don't Look Down” (1998) and “They Shoot Divas, Don't They?” (2002).
Childhood and Family:
Marianne Maddalena was born in early 1960s in Lansing, Michigan despite her Italian lineage. After studying at Michigan State University, she traveled to Europe where she stayed in Italy and France to study and work. Her first foray into the cinematic industry came in early 1986 when she landed a job from Warner Bros. on “Deadly Friend.”
Marianne Maddalena started her career in early 1986 when she was recruited by Warner Bros. to work on “Deadly Friend,” a comedy film directed by Wes Craven. She was the personal secretary for the Cleveland, Ohio-born filmmaker and they soon became very close. In late 1986, Craven asked her to become his assistant in the horror “The Serpent and the Rainbow” (1988), which was shot in Haiti. However, Maddalena did not make her debut as a film producer until the release of Wes Craven's “Shocker” (1989). A black comedy produced under Alive Films and starring Michael Murphy, Peter Berg, Mitch Pileggi and Sam Scarber, the movie was made in a low budget, but went on to enjoy strong commercial success by grossing 16 millions dollars at the box office. Lured by the victory, she was hired as the official producer and artistic collaborator for Wes Craven.
More work followed during the 1990s. In 1990, Maddalena participated in the production of “Night Vision,” a TV film aired on NBC with Craven both sitting on the director's chair and co-writing the material with Thomas Baum. She went on to produce “Wes Craven's The People Under the Stairs” in 1991 and the short-lived horror series “Nightmare Cafe” in 1992, but it was her subsequent assignment that really garnered the wavy brunette attention. “Wes Craven's New Nightmare” (1994), which marked the first movie she produced alone, received five nominations, including a Best Feature at Independent Spirit Awards.
Next up for Maddalena, she served as executive producer of “Vampire in Brooklyn” (1995), a box office failure starring Eddie Murphy and Angela Basset, “Scream” (1996), a widely popular horror/teen movie which won an ASCAP for Top Box Office Films, a Saturn for Best Horror Film and an MTV Movie for Best Film, among others, and the made-for-TV film “Don't Look Down” (1998). She returned as a producer for the sequels “Scream 2” (1997) and “Scream 3” (2000), “Hollyweird” (1998, TV) and “Music of the Heart” (1999), a biopic starring Meryl Streep and Cloris Leachman. “Don't Look Down,” “Scream 2,” “Sream 3” and “Music of My Heart” were produced under the Craven-Maddalena Films, an independent production company formed by Maddalena and her long-time partner, Wes Craven.
After executive producing “Wes Craven Presents Dracula 2000” (2000) and “They Shoot Divas, Don't They?” (2002, TV), Maddalena teamed up with Kevin Williamson to produce “Cursed” (2005), which was helmed by Craven and penned by Williamson, who also wrote the Scream series. Also in that same year, she produced the thriller “Red Eye,” in which she also had a bit part as flight passenger. Her subsequent credits were the Alexandre Aja-directed “The Hills Have Eyes” (2006), adapted from the 1977 Wes Craven classic of the same name,“The Breed” (2006) for director Nicholas Mastandrea, and “The Hills Have Eyes II” (2007), directed by Martin Weisz and jointly penned by Craven and his son, Jonathan. She also co-produced the TV series “Orion” (2006), aired in South Africa.
Maddalena is the producer of the upcoming horror/thriller “The Last House on the Left” (2008), starring Sara Paxton and Monica Potter and helmed by Dennis Iliadis. Besides, she serves as co-producer for “Wes Craven's Shocker,” scheduled for 2009 release.