Jennifer McClain and Miss Bouvèé are lovely in real life. But on the big screen?
They’re cut-throat queens of horror. Wilton Manors’ dynamic duo is in the middle of shooting their first big-screen feature titled “Big Easy Queens.”
The movie is just wrapping up an intense, 10-day shooting schedule in and around Wilton Manors. The stars invited SFGN to one of their locations for an exclusive set visit to interview the team.
Eric Swanson plays Miss Bouvèé in the movie and in his cabaret act in Wilton Manors. He gave us a look inside the story.
“I run a very successful club, but the club is a front for the mafia. I’m a queen of a certain quarter. My arch-nemesis is Jennifer McClain’s character, Poodle Makenzie. At the start of the movie I’m taking out some of her top-tier men to reclaim some territory.”
“Poodles Mckenzie is a tough, no BS boss in New Orleans,” McClain said about her role. “She's spent the last 20 years building an empire, which she runs out of a salon. She's been arch rivals with Minnie Bouvèé since she arrived on the scene.”
If it sounds campy and crazy and a little over the top, that’s the point. Director Erynn Dalton told us this movie could be one for the ages.
“I love it. This is really fun. I feel like we’re creating a new genre of horror. I’m calling this Glam Horror.”
What exactly is Glam Horror?
“First of all, drag queens. Drag queens, sequins, makeup, wigs, amazing costumes, glittery weapons. We shot a scene where one of Miss Bouvier’s assassins has huge machine gun boobs. That’s how she kills her enemies.”
Independent films are hard to get made and are almost always on a shoestring budget. But by Hollywood standards, this came together quickly. It’s only been about a year since work on the script started. Before you can shoot one shot, you have to have money. Many in the community donated to the project at a fundraiser at the home of Marc Martorama and Don D’Arminio.
“It’s important to support local talent, especially a film that is made in Wilton Manors. It helps put Wilton on the map.”
The couple also opened their home for a shoot. That’s just one of the places around Wilton Manors that eagle-eyed viewers may recognize when they see the movie. Our day on set was a location at the North Andrews Gardens home of one of the film’s producers.
Even though the movie is set in New Orleans, most if not all is shot in South Florida. A lot of places resemble the architecture of the city, as well as the vibes. One such spot is The Pub.
“Wilton people will recognize some places but it could be any bar anywhere,” Swanson said. “The Pub has a lot of decorative things you would see in New Orleans. The light in the ceiling, the vibrant colors. Those would be found in any gay bar in New Orleans.”
Now that principal photography is wrapping up, they hope to have it edited and ready by early next year. They haven’t set a premiere date yet, as they want to see which film festivals will pick it up during the 2023 season.
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