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July 29, 2014, 06:11:26 AM
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Badmovies.org Forum  |  Movies  |  Press Releases and Film News  |  RIP Mike Vraney « previous next »
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Author Topic: RIP Mike Vraney  (Read 1810 times)
major jay
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« on: January 03, 2014, 10:01:46 AM »

Such a sad loss for cult movie fans. Something Weird Video founder Mike Vraney has died from lung cancer. I remember discovering him and SWV through the TV show Reel Wild Cinema. He saved a lot of forgotten stuff.. RIP
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Rev. Powell
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« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2014, 10:45:27 AM »

I thought the name was familiar. Yes, Mike Vraney was a giant in terms of saving and archiving obscure movies that may well have been lost without his work. He will be missed.
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lester1/2jr
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« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2014, 11:39:05 AM »

very sad. Something Weird has been a big influence on my life. They're the kings. RIP Mike
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« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2014, 11:57:51 AM »

My personal top 10 Something Weird releases:

1. BASKET CASE
2. BAD GIRLS GO TO HELL
3. BLOOD FEAST
4. THE WILD WILD WORLD OF JAYNE MANSFIELD
5. HORRORS OF SPIDER ISLAND
6. THE AMAZING TRANSPLANT
7. REEFER MADNESS
8. TEENAGE TUPELO
9. BLOODY PIT OF HORROR
10. THE ACID EATERS
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"The best parts are watching Sly go through the full range of emotions: deadpan, deadpan with raised eyebrow, deadpan with quivering lip. There's also a great sequence where Sly drives his VW Beetle down the interstate for about 20 minutes, staring dramatically through the windshield.."-Joe Bob on A MAN CALLED RAMBO
major jay
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« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2014, 12:51:44 PM »

Some of mine
THE BIZARRE ONES
BOWANGA BOWANGA THE WHITE SIRENS OF AFRICA
TEENAGE SEX FANTASIES
2000 MANIACS
THE CURIOUS DR HUMP
BLOOD FREAK
BOING!
FALLGUY
SHE CAME ON THE BUS
PSYCHED BY THE 4D WITCH

Also, he was an amazing salesman. Reading his catalog was almost as fun as watching the movies.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2014, 01:56:21 PM by major jay » Logged

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« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2014, 01:47:34 PM »


BLOOD FREAK


I thought SW released this but for some reason I didn't find it on their site. I definitely would have added it to my own list if I had.
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MrMari
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« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2014, 02:46:02 PM »

I first found out about Mike and SWV in the early 90's in college. The roomate and I had rented a copy of some cheap Kung-Fu movie with a giant clamshell case from the local mom and pop video store. Clearly someone had either dubbed over it, or just mixed up VHS tapes because instead of the Kung Fu movie we were treated to one of the strangest movies any of us had ever seen, 1967's "Mr. Maris Girls". When we went back to the video store to return the movie we were like, WTF was this??? The dude behind the counter told us about SWV and said it was a mistake. Well, I was hooked. I mailed in a request for a catalog and put in my first order. Interestingly enough, when I phoned my order in, It was Mikes wife, Lisa who answered the phone. What an awesome lady, she sat on the phone for over an hour explaining the sexploitation genre and her husbands passion for strange cinema. Since then, I've added a large collection of SWV titles. And yes, the catalog was so much fun to read. Here is a brief explanation of Mikes death I found on this site:

http://forum.expressobeans.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=129139&p=2420872

Quote
In Memorium
MIKE VRANEY
Founder of Something Weird
December 29, 1957 to January 2, 2014

We regret to tell you that Something Weird’s founder, Mike Vraney, passed away on January 2, 2014 after a long heroic battle with lung cancer. He was 56 years old, way too young to leave this planet. There was still so much Mike wanted to do in his life, so many films to be found, and adventures to be embarked upon.

This sad news may come as a shock to most of you. Mike was a very private person and didn’t want anyone, except his closest friends, family and colleagues, to know about his illness. He went through aggressive chemotherapy and radiation treatments for over a year, but sadly the cancer spread and cruelly took him from us.

Mike had a larger-than-life personality and a genuine enthusiasm for movies. Something Weird was his heart and soul, he was obsessive in his pursuit of tracking down the weirdest, wildest movies out there. And it wasn’t enough to find a few forgotten films, he was always in search of the movie motherload. (Making 370 two-hour volumes of Nudie Cuties loops is a good example of this. Who does that?! Mike Vraney!) Even as a child, Mike loved movies. During his teenage years, he worked at the Bel-Kirk Drive-In, and then later as a projectionist at the Green Parrot and Apple Theaters in Seattle. Then around 1990, Mike went in search of as many old, unusual, obscure, and lost low budget exploitation movies as he could, and preserved them for prosperity. Mike amassed thousands of these rare movies and had them transferred to video so that people could relive the good old days of going to the drive-in or grindhouse theater, in their very own home. We have him to thank for introducing fandom to the wonderful world of sexploitation sinema, rescuing it from the dark recesses of forgotten film vaults and defunct movie theatres.

Some of you may know that prior to Something Weird, Mike was involved in the early Seattle punk rock music scene. He was a partner in Modern Productions, the group who started Seattle’s seminal rock venue, The Showbox, in 1979. Mike then went on to manage such well-known bands as The Dead Kennedys, TSOL, and Seattle’s own The Accused. Mike always seemed to be at the forefront of whatever was happening and cool.Mike’s second greatest passion in life was collecting old comics, vintage toys, movie memorabilia, and pop cultural ephemera. He enjoyed going to the swap meet and always had a magical ability for finding great stuff. But when he wasn’t working, collecting, or telling great stories, Mike spent quality time with his beloved family. Mike adored his wife and business partner, Lisa, and two (now young adult) children, Mark and Danielle. These three were the center of his universe, and his reason for getting up each and every morning.

The folks at Something Weird fully intend to honor Mike’s incredible legacy. Mike may be gone, but his remarkable achievements will live on. One of the happiest days of Mike’s life was when legendary David F. Friedman and Dan Sonney called him “the forty-first thief,” which to him was the ultimate compliment and recognition for his work. We’d like to think that Mike’s now hanging out with his old pals Dave and Dan, reminiscing and talking shop with Dwain Esper, Kroger Babb, Barry Mahon, Joe Sarno, Doris Wishman, Bob Cresse, Dale Berry, Michael Findlay and all the other exploiteers and smut peddlers who’ve gone to the great grindhouse in the sky.

We will miss Mike with all our hearts. Goodbye dear friend, husband, father, and fearless leader…
– Lisa Petrucci, Tim Lewis, Kendall Bechtel, Mark Vraney, Danielle Vraney of Something Weird Video


RIP Mike Vraney.
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lester1/2jr
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« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2014, 02:58:28 PM »

trailer for the sexplitation doc they made.

Small | Large


(Edited:  a little too much skin on the preview, I would recommend avoiding it on a work computer - just in case)

In one of his last posts on his youtube account, Vraney said it will be available for download, etc this year
« Last Edit: January 06, 2014, 12:17:53 PM by Andrew » Logged

Ed, Ego and Superego
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« Reply #8 on: January 03, 2014, 04:49:14 PM »

I think almost anyone on here owes him a debt of gratitude.  He did great work for us.
-Ed
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Raffine
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« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2014, 07:51:19 AM »

Almost as important as the feature films he presented to us was the way he packaged them - with jaw-dropping shorts, trailers, industrial films, poster art, etc. I'll never forget that short documenting 'the neutering of the reindeer by Lapland maidens' short he including with TERROR IN THE MIDNIGHT SUN.

Thanks for the memories, Mr. Vraney.
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major jay
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« Reply #10 on: January 04, 2014, 09:36:23 AM »

Here's a 2hr interview done with him a couple of years ago by Third Eye Cinema Podcast. It's a great listen.
 http://blogtalk.vo.llnwd.net/o23/show/2/995/show_2995083.mp3
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RCMerchant
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« Reply #11 on: January 24, 2014, 08:59:50 PM »

I just heard about it the other day...thats reall awful news-Mike Vraney was a hero. I still treasure my copies of The WILD AND THE NAKED and SHE MOB. In fact,ALL my most obscure stuff came from SW.
I'm sure his lovey wife will carry on the tradition.

RIP to a great film archivist.

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lester1/2jr
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« Reply #12 on: January 24, 2014, 11:29:07 PM »

sorry about that Andrew. It didn't even occur to me.
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316zombie
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« Reply #13 on: February 10, 2014, 09:20:50 PM »

the something weird sampler was one of my first dvds...still have it,always will!
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lester1/2jr
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« Reply #14 on: February 11, 2014, 08:56:01 AM »

That spook show DVD is so crazy. The actual spook shows are only like a half hour long so they went nuts with the disc design.
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