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A film journalist's Covid move inspires a new chapter and a place to call home




Alicia Malone
Film Journalist & Host for Turner Classic Movies in rural Maine


I’m excited to invite you to my conversation with Alicia Malone. Alicia is a recent Maine transplant, who relocated from Los Angeles during Covid. Alicia was born and raised in Australia. She is a published author, film expert, and most well known for her role as a host on Turner Classic Movies. Her two books -- Backwards and in Heels and The Female Gaze - focus on the role of women in cinema history, and the accomplishments and struggles of many female filmmakers today.


Ever since she was a kid, Alicia has been obsessed with cinema. She knew she wanted to someday work in the film industry, and was super focused towards manifesting her goal of building a career in the highly competitive entertainment industry.


Instead of going to college, Alicia moved to Sydney right out of high school to work behind the scenes in television production. After cutting her teeth as a film journalist in Australia, she moved to Los Angeles, with the specific goal in mind to one day work as a host for Turner Classic Movies.


Contrary to the many assumptions about the role of a television host, Alicia writes all of her own scripts, and loves the viewing and researching process more than her time on camera.


As a child, Alicia grew up on a farm and always dreamed that she would go back to live in the country someday. It was always that “one day” sort of dream, but when the pandemic hit, that dream finally seemed like a viable option. Alicia was working remotely, and taking trips every couple of months to film for Turner Classic Movies at their headquarters in Atlanta. She realized nothing was keeping her in the stressful, congestion, stress and party scene of Los Angeles. On a whim, she found a monthly Airbnb rental in a town in Maine that she had only driven through once. Even though she'd never spent anytime there, that one drive thru was enough to enchant her and make her want test the waters to see if it felt like home.


In less than a month, she knew this was where she wanted to plant permanent roots. She quickly bought her first home because she saw real estate prices increasing and inventory decreasing. While most of her work takes place outside of her small community, Alicia is currently pursuing a dream to open a local independent theater. She wants to show classic and contemporary films and is looking forward to contributing to the "movie memories" of others.



Alicia is such an inspiration, not only because of the joy and tenacity with which she approaches following her dreams, but the life she has built for herself on her own terms. I know how grateful she is to make the shift back to small town life after decades of building her career in big cities. I love hearing about how returning to a small town has allowed her to re-experience her childhood rural roots, and also return to a more authentic version of herself - even dyeing her hair back to her natural blonde. Alicia took her physical move as an opportunity for a mental shift as well in prioritizing her health, and also stepping back from the rat race and ‘more is more’ mentality.


I think that’s a lot of what Urban Exodus is about - not just a physical shift towards the natural world - but also one that encompasses a more natural shift within, listening to your own inner voice, and prioritizing the things that are truly fulfilling in life.


In our conversation, we speak about her advice for urbanites making the dramatic shift to small town life, moving while single, Alicia’s lifestyle and career choices, and the changes she has witnessed in herself since leaving the bustle of city life. This is a story of following your intuition, new beginnings, and the pursuit of happiness. I hope you enjoy listening.


Thank you Alicia for sharing your story with us!


LINKS
Alicia's Twitter
Alicia's Instagram
Alicia's Ted Talk
•Alicia's Book Backwards and in Heels
Alicia's Book The Female Gaze
Link to preorder Alicia's newest book, Girls on Film