Joan Hughes 1976 ✠ 2014 “The Movie Maven”: podcaster delighted fans of horror, sci-fi, and fantasy

BY AUSTIN BURBRIDGE. LOS ANGELES (CINEMA MINIMA) — Joan Hughes, whose Twitter status updates and podcast had delighted fans of horror, science fiction, and fantasy movies, died unexpectedly Thursday morning, March 13, 2014, in Mobile, Alabama. On Monday three days before, she had gone to an Emergency Room for treatment of pneumonia. On Wednesday, she posted a picture of herself from her sickbed to Twitter, remarking, “Can’t show the full picture, but u get the idea. I’m in the hospital with pneumonia, but I fight back.”

Photo of Joan Hughes

“Movies have always been a part of who I am,” she said, “a constant in my life, and a big part of my world.” Although she loved all kinds of movies, her focus was on horror, science fiction, and fantasy stories. She shared her enthusiasm for, and knowledge of, the genres with other fans via her Twitter account @Writer1976.

She was a beloved figure in the #HorrorFamily community of horror-movie fans on Twitter, as the outpouring of heartfelt tributes to her at #RIPJoan attest.


Her podcast, The Movie Maven, is a genial and engaging half-hour to one-hour entertainment. Hughes shared her passion with listeners in a tone that was easy, and conversational; she put interviewees at ease with a style that was gracious and informal. The podcast debuted in July, 2013, and delivered 26 episodes, including an interview with producer Sandy King Carpenter.


Joan Hughes was a Special Education teacher: “I love it so much,” but, she added, “It’s hard work, and is a bit draining at times. However, I am always happy when I have done something to help another child.” She was an alumna of Bowie State University in Maryland, where she studied psychology. Her hometown was Hyattsville, Maryland. She lived in Eight Mile, Alabama, with her husband, Larry Hughes, Jr.