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SXSW 2013 Interview: Director Mike Mendez And The Team Behind Big Ass Spider

Big Ass Spider Poster“Big Ass Spider” may be the talk of SXSW courtesy of that outrageous title and downright wild central concept, but the film also sends a strong message to budding filmmakers – limitations are fading and you’re totally capable of making your movie, even if it features a big ass spider. While major studios are spitting out a slew of epic adventures with budgets north of $200 million, director Mike Mendez simply assembled an exceptionally dedicated cast and crew to make his movie about an enormous spider that attacks Los Angeles on a far more affordable scale.

The film features Greg Grunberg as Alex Mathis, a local exterminator who loves his work. After suffering a nasty bite from a pesky brown recluse, Alex heads over to the hospital to treat the wound. While on his way out, Alex overhears that the hospital is having a spider problem of its own so he steps up to take care of the issue. Little does Alex know, the critter wreaking havoc in the facility’s morgue is no ordinary spider, rather the result of a military experiment gone totally wrong. If Alex doesn’t eliminate the target fast, the spider will continue to grow exponentially with each life it consumes and possibly jump-start a full-blown infestation.

There was really no better place for a film like “Big Ass Spider” to debut than at the Alamo Drafthouse in a midnight slot at SXSW. Just as the title, poster and trailer imply, the film is absolutely outrageous and it’s the filmmakers’ allegiance to going big and bold that makes the film such a riotous blast and made the world premiere screening the ideal SXSW late night experience.

After the big debut, Mendez, producers Shaked Berenson and Patrick Ewald, and stars Clare Kramer and Lombardo Boyar sat down to run through the process of bringing their big ass spider to life. Similar to the movie, the team enjoys a silly, often expletive-filled laugh, but also has a thorough understanding of what it takes to make a movie and make it right, something that propels “Big Ass Spider” to a higher degree of quality than some might be expecting.

By Perri Nemiroff

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Film producer and director best known for her work in movies such as FaceTime, Trevor, and The Professor. She has worked as an online movie blogger and reporter for sites such as,, Shockya, and MTV's Movies Blog.

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