For the past few months, Schmoesknow.com EIC Mark Reilly and TheWrap film reporter Jeff Sneider have been getting together each Friday to Meet the Movie Press. The one-hour podcast, which highlights the business of breaking Hollywood scoops, is anchored around weekly conversations with fellow entertainment journalists like Justin Kroll (Variety), Devin Faraci (Badass Digest) and Alex Billington (First Showing).
This week’s MTMP guest is Umberto Gonzalez, a.k.a. El Mayimbe, from the website Latino Review. Gonzalez, who recently staked a new claim on the other side of the film-reporting fence, began the conversation by talking about his recent Matt Damon/Jason Bourne scoop and his background in New York independent film production.
“In the late 90s, there was work [in New York] left and right… Around 2000, there was going to be the the threat of an actor’s strike that never happened. So there was a de facto strike. The last job I did was for [Alejandro González] Iñárritu. He was doing a Quaker State commercial because he needed the money to finish posting Amores Perros…”
“Then I went to work for a director who made a movie called Empire. It went to Sundance in 2001 and basically got bought by Universal. So I basically came out to L.A. to be the Latin version of E [from Entourage].”
During those early LA years, Gonzalez forged some strong talent agency contacts, which came in handy when he eventually spied a mention of Latino Review on Ain’t It Cool News and became friends with site founder Kelvin Chavez. Both are from Queens (Newbury Park and Flushing, respectively).
El Mayimbe says “scooping is a contact sport” and that he likes to operate on the networking front a lot like Fox Sports journalist Jay Glazer. He then dropped a couple of major comic book movie development scoops.