Thursday, April 30, 2009

Episode #010 Arthur Machen's The Bowmen

Click to listen

We are very pleased to announce WildClaw Theatre’s Blood Radio Podcast, episode #010.
In this episode we present our world premier audio presentation of Arthur Machen’s THE BOWMEN, read by WildClaw Artistic Director Charley Sherman, and produced by Scott Tallarida.
Also, do not miss our current production of THE REVENANTS, currently running at the Angel Island Theatre, 735 W. Sheridan, Chicago, Thursday through Sunday, industry and student discounts available, check us out at for more details.

Thinking of the Claw...

Just thinking about ya, Claw. Thanks for everything...

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Horror Society's Freak of the Week

He's a Freak, he's a SuperFreak!

Many thanks to Mitch and the gang over at Horror Society for bestowing upon our own Dr. AC, Aaron Christensen, the illustrious honor of...FREAK OF THE WEEK.

Here's a little taste of our chat:

HS: What types of horror films are your favorites?

AC: Boy, that’s a tough question, Mitch! Isn’t it? You wouldn’t think it would be, but when you take horror as seriously as you and I do, you want to be accurate and honest, not give some crap-out answer like, “Slashers!” or “I love ‘em all.” It depends on my mental temperature of the day, to be perfectly honest. I really do have a passion for the genre as a whole, and so it’s hard to say that I prefer one subgenre over another. I love it when a film or filmmaker can bring something new to the table, especially in this “seen-it-all-before” climate. I recently saw a great little Brit horror flick called The Children written and directed by Tom Shankland (who also helmed last year’s The Killing Gene) and it simply knocked my socks off, because we’ve seen the “killer kids” thing before, yet the movie had my friend and I on the edge of our seats! Definitely check it out once it makes its way Stateside.

I also read a lot of horror reference books, so oftentimes that will shape what I’m in the mood for. I just polished off John Stell’s Psychos! Sickos! Sequels: Horror Films of the 1980s (highly recommended, by the way), so I’m dying to go back and revisit some some old favorites from that decade, as well as giving a second look to films that I might have dismissed upon their first viewing. I’m a big proponent of re-viewing because the old adage about “you can’t step in the same river twice” is so true when it comes to cinema. The movies don’t change but we do, and when we see a film again, we are looking at it with different eyes. It’s happened many a time where a picture that I couldn’t stand the first time around becomes a new favorite or I’ll be less impressed by a flick than I originally was. Again, it’s all part of being a good student.

HS: Are you a fan of the horror remake trend?

AC: Oh, is that ever a loaded question. No, of course not. It annoys the hell out of me that Hollywood is too scared to produce anything without some form of name recognition anymore, even if it’s something like the “in-name-only” remake of Prom Night. However, I will say that 2009 has turned out some halfway decent remakes already, in the form of My Bloody Valentine, The Last House on the Left and The Uninvited (the English-language remake of A Tale of Two Sisters), so this might be the year that remakes don’t suck.

But as we all know, these are the exceptions to the rule and I don’t think that any of these top the original films. It’s sad, because there is some really exciting stuff going on in the foreign and indie horror markets. If studios would put some marketing muscle behind those films, it would cost less than producing some soulless remake and I think they would find that theatrical audiences would respond favorably to these fresh ideas. But nobody’s willing to take those chances, so it all gets dumped to DVD; then it’s up to the brave and the persistent to discover them on their own. It’s really a tragedy...

To read the full interview, click on the link below. And feel free to wander around the Horror Society site to check out what Mitch and the H/S gang continue to serve up. It's a great site for horror fans everywhere, and especially those living in the Windy City!

Aaron "Dr. AC" Christensen - FREAK OF THE WEEK

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

REVENANTS director Anne Adams on Roxy Horror!!

Anne Adams, fearless director of WildClaw's critically acclaimed production of THE REVENANTS, sits down with the gals from Roxy Horror to talk about life in the theatre, facing your fears, and dealing with those gosh-darn zombies.

Here's the link: CLICK HERE

Strawdog Theatre's RED NOSES is a freaking great time!

I had the pleasure this past Sunday night to attend a performance of Strawdog Theatre's RED NOSES. Now, I know that honestly, self preservation dictates that I use this valuable blog space to plug for our production, Scott T. Barsotti's THE REVENANTS, currently running at 935 W. Sheridan. But, really, I need to take a moment here...

First of all, we here at WildClaw love Strawdog. We really do. We probably would not have made it this far without their generosity and support. Seeing as Aly Greaves is both, we are almost family. In-laws I guess. And, secondly, they are currently our neighbors, what with being at 3829 N. Broadway, a mere shamble away, easy access even for a zombie...

Thirdly, however...this show, RED NOSES, rocks. And I do not use that term lightly. Now, of course, a show dealing with death, plague, pestilence, and man's quest for and denial of humanity, perhaps it appeals to me right now, but, regardless...

The two hours and fifteen minutes I spent in the Strawdog Theatre space watching RED NOSES were the most enjoyable two hours and fifteen minutes I have spent in a theatre in years. It was the most fun I have had seeing a play about death and disease, ever. Ever.

There are too many highlights for my aged and drug addled zombie brain to list, but I will attempt a meager smattering. First and foremost, WildClaw's very own Aly Greaves' costumes are perfect. From the casual dress, through the cardinal and the pope right to Master Pestilence...they are perfect. Carmine "Duffy's Big Break" Grisolia, Shannon Hoag, John Moran, and Rob "Butterpants" McLean ought to start a band. I would definitely make a point of seeing that gig. Stephen Taylor, Anderson "Little Body" Lawfer, Eric "They are going to roast me on the 15th" Roach, and Kyle Hamman are hilarious, and Sarah Goeden is heartbreaking. I haven't even mentioned the malformed twins, the self-abuse, the infectious plague, the ravens, and...did I see zombies? Oh, and I cannot leave out the anchor of the show, John "F@#%stick" Ferrick.

I do not get super enthusiastic about shows that often. This one however, is a must see.

I have a great idea. Buy tickets to see THE REVENANTS Sunday matinee, and tickets to RED NOSES Sunday evening performance. In between go across the street and have some food and a margarita at El Mariachi. That might just be the perfect day of theatre, ever, in the history of the world. Just make sure to bring quarters for the meters.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Universal to remake VIDEODROME...sigh.



Universal Pictures will remake the 1983 David Cronenberg-directed thriller "Videodrome," with Ehren Kruger set to write the script and produce with partner Daniel Bobker.

The producers tracked down the rights to Canadian distribution vet Rene Malo, who will be exec producer. Universal distributed the original and had first refusal on a remake, and the studio snapped up the opportunity.

The original "Videodrome" starred James Woods as the head of Civic TV Channel 83, who makes his station relevant by programming "Videodrome," a series that depicts torture and murder that transfixes viewers.

The new picture will modernize the concept, infuse it with the possibilities of nano-technology and blow it up into a large-scale sci-fi action thriller.
Cronenberg has no role in the film as yet. He is prepping for MGM "The Matarese Circle" as a starring vehicle for Tom Cruise and Denzel Washington. Since Cruise appears likely to next star in the DreamWorks drama "Motorcade" and Washington has committed to the Fox drama "Unstoppable," "Circle" doesn't appear likely to get under way until later this year or 2010.

Bobker/Kruger Films recently set the thriller "Dream House" at Morgan Creek and is producing, with Matthew Stillman, "The Keep" for Rogue. Kruger co-wrote the June 24 Paramount/DreamWorks release "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" with Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Revenants Opening Night Party

On April 20th, WildClaw Theatre opened it's third full production with Scott T. Barsotti's The Revenants. Directed by WildClaw company member Anne Adams, this "relationship drama - with zombies" features Brian Amidei, Ryan Patrick Dolan, Laura Hooper and Jenny Strubin. These are pictures from the Opening Night party.

Scott T. Barsotti (The Revenants writer) and Anne Adams (The Revenants director)

(r) Ryan Patrick Dolan (Gary in The Revenants)

(m) Jen Strubin (Karen in The Revenants), (r) Laura Hooper (Molly in The Revenants)

(l) David O'Brien (Asst Set Designer) (m) Coye Vega (Asst. Stage Manager), (r) Brian Amidei (Joe in The Revenants)

(m) Paul Foster (Lighting Designer)

(m) Charley Sherman (WildClaw Artistic Director)

Women In Horror

WildClaw enjoyed the oasis that was the Portage Theater amid the monsoon that struck Chicago on Saturday. We were there for Horror Society's Women In Horror filmfest. The Revenants' director, Anne Adams, promoted the hell out of her play to the delight of zombie fans at the event.

Aly Renee Greaves and Anne Adams

While there, we met the folks from Dark Rider Filmworks and the Dark Carnival filmfest.

Aly Renee Greaves and Anne Adams, both WildClaw company members, made some great contacts with Molotov Theatre's Tara Garwood from Washington, D.C.. Molotov Theatre is America's second oldest Grand Guignol theatre. Needless to say, these women of horror had a lot to talk about.

Tara, Laura, Aly, and Anne

We also got to see Aaron Christensen's The Revenant's trailer on the big screen along with Ryan Oliver's preview for his upcoming film, She-Bang. As always, a big thanks to Chicago's Horror society for being such great hosts.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

She-Bang at the Portage Theatre

A quick aside from the love-fest that is The Revenants reviews:

Saw a sneak preview last night of a trailer that's going to be playing on the big screen at the Horror Society's "Women in Horror" event this Saturday at the Portage Theatre.

Y'all want to be there to see it. It's awesome.

It's a teaser for "She-Bang," a glorious, bloody, city-wide brawl among about twenty all-female gangs. Like "The Warriors" crossed with "The Big Doll House".

It's Ryan Oliver's baby. Yeah, that Ryan Oliver -- sick mind, FoWC, and Blood Jock extraordinaire for "Great God Pan" and "The Revenants". The trailer will be posted next week on his myspace page, along with tons of stills and on-set photography of some of the city's most beautiful and bad-ass ladies. Check it out.

More ink...

Chicago Tribune

What makes us human -- our appetite for survival at any cost, or our need for love and companionship?

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

And it begins...

Here we go.

Theatre Review by Venus Zarris
Sound Designer Mikhail Fiksel remarkably front-loads this production with the most bone chilling opening sound edit that I have ever experienced in a play.
Set Designer Charlie Athanas and Lighting Designer Paul Foster make perfect use of the perfect space at Angel Island Theatre.

Brian Amidei (Joe) and Laura Hooper (Molly) are more than convincing as the famished undead, rather they are amazingly frightening. Together they deliver remarkable non-verbal performances that transcend the zombie cliché to create a very present sense of danger, sadness and dread.

If you love horror and/or unusual theater, The Revenants should not be missed.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

They're here....I bet Mulder is really chuffed right now.

Click to read...

Former astronaut: Man not alone in universe

(CNN) -- Earth Day may fall later this week, but as far as former NASA astronaut Edgar Mitchell and other UFO enthusiasts are concerned, the real story is happening elsewhere.
Astronaut Edgar Mitchell, shown after his Apollo mission in 1971, claims there "is no doubt we are being visited."

Astronaut Edgar Mitchell, shown after his Apollo mission in 1971, claims there "is no doubt we are being visited."

Mitchell, who was part of the 1971 Apollo 14 moon mission, asserted Monday that extraterrestrial life exists, and that the truth is being concealed by the U.S. and other governments.

He delivered his remarks during an appearance at the National Press Club following the conclusion of the fifth annual X-Conference, a meeting of UFO activists and researchers studying the possibility of alien life forms.

Mankind has long wondered if we're "alone in the universe. [But] only in our period do we really have evidence. No, we're not alone," Mitchell said.

"Our destiny, in my opinion, and we might as well get started with it, is [to] become a part of the planetary community. ... We should be ready to reach out beyond our planet and beyond our solar system to find out what is really going on out there."

Mitchell grew up in Roswell, New Mexico, which some UFO believers maintain was the site of a UFO crash in 1947. He said residents of his hometown "had been hushed and told not to talk about their experience by military authorities." They had been warned of "dire consequences" if they did so.

But, he claimed, they "didn't want to go to the grave with their story. They wanted to tell somebody reliable. And being a local boy and having been to the moon, they considered me reliable enough to whisper in my ear their particular story."

Roughly 10 years ago, Mitchell claimed, he was finally given an appointment at Pentagon to discuss what he had been told.

An unnamed admiral working for the Joint Chiefs of Staff promised to uncover the truth behind the Roswell story, Mitchell said. The stories of a UFO crash "were confirmed," but the admiral was then denied access when he "tried to get into the inner workings of that process."

The same admiral, Mitchell claimed, now denies the story.

"I urge those who are doubtful: Read the books, read the lore, start to understand what has really been going on. Because there really is no doubt we are being visited," he said.

"The universe that we live in is much more wondrous, exciting, complex and far-reaching than we were ever able to know up to this point in time."

A NASA spokesman denied any cover-up.

"NASA does not track UFOs. NASA is not involved in any sort of cover-up about alien life on this planet or anywhere else -- period," Michael Cabbage said Monday.

Debates have continued about what happened at Roswell. The U.S. Air Force said in 1994 that wreckage recovered there in 1947 was most likely from a balloon-launched classified government project.

Stephen Bassett, head of the Paradigm Research Group (PRG), which hosted the X-Conference, said that the truth about extraterrestrial life is being suppressed because it is politically explosive.

"There is a third rail [in American politics], and that is the UFO question. It is many magnitudes more radioactive than Social Security ever dreamed to be," Bassett said.

ALIENS/NEAR DARK stars to appear at Flashback Weekend!

Our good friends Mike and Mia have passed along some exciting news:

"We are happy to announce “NEAR DARK” and “ALIENS” stars Lance Henricksen and Jenette Goldstein. This is the first US Horror convention where they will be appearing together!"

Flashback Weekend Chicago Horror Convention
October 23-25, 2009
Wyndham O’Hare
6810 N. Mannheim Road
Rosemont, Illinois 60018

Announced guests include:


Plus Chicago Legend SVENGOOLIE! appearing Saturday October 24, 2009

MANY more great guests to be announced!

The Flashback Weekend costume contest and the Zombie Pin-up pageant sponsored by Sinistervisions will be back as well as a huge dealers room, awesome celebrity guests, Halloween parties, live horror theatre from the NMTC, special events, great prize giveaways from our presenting sponsor Anchor Bay Entertainment, and much more!

MAKE YOUR HOTEL RESERVATIONS NOW! ONLY $99.00 per night! Discount hotel rooms are available at the Wyndham O’Hare in Rosemont Illinois under the Flashback Weekend discount code. The discount room rate is only $99.00 per night plus tax. We suggest that you make the reservations soon, as the hotel sold out last year. You may place your hotel reservations by calling (847) 297-1234. Please mention Flashback Weekend to confirm your discount hotel rate.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Episode #009 Deathscribe part four

Click to listen.

We are very pleased to announce WildClaw Theatre’s Blood Radio Podcast, episode #009.
We conclude our presentation of Deathscribe 2008, with part four, featuring your host Aaron “Dr. AC” Christensen, and WildClaw ensemble member Brian Amidei reading H. P. Lovecraft's Nyarlahothep.

We are accepting submissions for Deathscribe 2009 through July 15th!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Meet the Playwright

This is Scott T. Barsotti.

He always wears that hat. Even in the middle of August. The rest of the outfit he only drags out on special occasions.

Scott has 3 plays in Chicago in the next month. Coydog is opening at +EP Theater on April 29th, McMeekin Finds Out at the Chicago Dramatists, and of course, The Revenants, opening on Monday.

Photo by Kyle La Mere, make-up artist by Lizz Neish.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Costumes for Revenants-Distressing....

So there is a fine art to making zombie costumes...mostly it involves figuring out what the people the zombies used to be are like...then what they were wearing when they were attacked...and then taking those clothes and ripping the heck out of them and staining them up. But of course the stains need to be permanent...these costumes will need to be washed every night so the distressing has to be done in such a way as to last throughout the run with minimal touchups. Tricky tricky stuff yall.

Tricks of the distressing trade: scissors, seam rippers, sand paper, metal rasps, grinders, acrylic paint, Rit Dye, and much more. Photos to come...

Jim Henson's RESIDENT EVIL 5

Monday, April 13, 2009

The most haunted park in Major League Baseball

It is, once again, opening day at Wrigley Field, regardless of the gray and the gloom of the weather. Professional baseball is being played in what is considered by some as the most haunted major league baseball park in nation.

The sightings and stories are too numerous to share in total, but I will highlight a few of my favorites.

First, of course, are the rumors of Steve Goodman haunting the friendly confines. Steve Goodman is the grammy award winning songwriter who wrote the Arlo Guthrie hit “The City of New Orleans”, and was famous on the North Side for “Go Cubs Go” and “A Dying Cub’s Fan Last Request.”

A year and a half after releasing this song, on September 20th 1984, Goodman died. 11 days before the Chicago Cubs made their first post-season appearance in 40 years. Although published reports that Goodman’s ashes were buried at home plate have not ever been confirmed by the Cubs organization, Steve has been sighted dozens of time in the seats behind home plate. Go Cubs go, indeed.

Former player and manager Charlie Grimm also had his ashes buried in a box in left centerfield.

Grimm has been seen or felt all over the park, and his presence is testified to by some of Wrigley Field’s most tenured employees. He has been accused of turning on lights, storming through the front offices, whispering people’s names in empty hallways, and most eerily, calling the bullpen phone, which is located near the ashes, in the middle of the night. The phone is a direct line from the dugout. It cannot be dialed by an outside line.

And last, but most certainly not least, I will leave you with this thought. Soon after the passing of our friend and namesake, Ray Wild, Four Moon Tavern proprietor Matt Kozlowski took up the charge of handling his ashes.

After putting some aside for future plans (such a sprinkling of Ray for good luck before the premiere of our inaugural production, The Great God Pan), he began the process of honoring Ray’s wishes. After some experimentation, he devised the idea of cutting open tennis balls, and filling them up with Ray, and then gently taping them closed again. Not too tight, for they needed to pop open upon impact for maximum Ray-spread. He then went out to the park, and threw Ray over the outfield wall. He threw him on the field, he threw him on the bleachers. He threw him wherever he could. I asked him how many balls of Ray he threw, and he said “A lot. Ray was a big guy.” When I asked him if he thought Ray might be wandering the bleachers, he said "Sure, why not. I know one thing, Corey Patterson sure got a huge mouthful of Ray the next day." I did not ask him to elaborate.

So, the next time you head out to the park, take a moment and look around. Look for Steve, singing “Go Cubs Go” behind home plate. Listen for that bullpen phone ringing, and wonder who is really on the other line. Or look for a tall distinguished gentleman with a wild shock of white hair, in the bleachers rooting for his Cubbies to break that 101 year curse. If you see him, raise your beer and drink a toast, for you will have seen The Claw.

Now, play ball.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

POULTRYGEIST and Troma Prez Lloyd Kaufman at the Music Box next weekend!!!

Lloyd Kaufman hosts Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead at the Music Box Theatre Midnight Movie, Midnight Friday and Saturday, April 17 & 18th!!!

Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead is cinema’s first chicken-zombie horror-comedy… with musical numbers!

This is an amazing film, and one to see in all its big screen glory, surrounded by Chicago horror fans! Here's the Doc's review from last year:

"Troma Studios president and jack-of-all-trades Lloyd Kaufman once again assumes the position (in the director’s chair, that is), serving up a full tilt assault against fast food companies by way of a mutant zombie chicken infestation…with musical numbers.

This unbridled and unhinged romp sets out to leave no sacred cow unskewered, no nationality or religious belief unmaligned, no bodily excretion unsplattered, with said goals accomplished via a fervor rarely matched in the Troma canon. This may be Kaufman’s masterpiece, as he has for perhaps the first time assembled a cast – led by the appealing Kate Graham and Jason Yachanin – that exhibits genuine thespian talent along with the requisite Troma enthusiasm.

Even the raunchy songs are well done, although they do occasionally halt the narrative fowl freight train of mutating mayhem and murder. If you can’t have a good time watching this, you’re just not trying!"

April 17 & 18th
Music Box Theatre
3733 N Southport Ave Chicago, IL 60613


Woody Harrelson mistakes photographer for a zombie

So Woody Harrelson clashes with a photographer, naturally thinking he is zombie, and CCN reports it. Read the article, in which they quote him as saying, "I wrapped a movie called 'Zombieland,' in which I was constantly under assault by zombies, then flew to New York, still very much in character. With my daughter at the airport I was startled by a paparazzo, who I quite understandably mistook for a zombie," he said.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Real Zombie Cocktail

When I was growing up, there were still Polynesian restaurants or "Tiki Bars" everywhere and everyone went to them, not just arty hipsters who read Juxtapoz Magazine. It was a family outing with exotic food in a dreamlike setting, usually a waterfall, a bridge over a running stream and a night sky painted on the ceiling. Very tropical. And, to the adults delight, the menu featured tasty tiki drinks that got you buzzed quickly and made you feel like you weren't in the same town you worked in and your kids were tolerable.

Now the drink that epitomized the Tiki Bar lifestyle, was The Zombie. I've had a few of them lately, in Montreal, Dallas, and Chicago. Montreal's was the best, but none of them match this recipe. Casual drinkers beware, this is a drink from an age when folks took their cocktail hour very seriously and the Zombie was king.

Knock one of these puppies back before you come to The Revenants, which opens April 20th at Angel Island Theater in Chicago.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire hunter

Seth Grahame-Smith, the author of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, just inked a two-book deal with Grand Central Press. His first book will be Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.

Zombie the new Zombie...

Time Magazine thinks zombies are the should you.

So what is it about zombies? Personally, they rank up pretty high on my awesome list (along with monkeys/apes, robots, astronauts, superheroes, submarines, Jane Austen, and ponies). In fact perhaps I will draw up a little mini-comic combining all these my copious spare time.

Luckily someone has already combined Jane Austen and Zombies. The book, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, is on my bedside table at the moment. And it might be my most favorite thing evah! What wouldn't be made better by a little zombie action? Fingers crossed that someone does a zombie mashup with Dickens next...

Shikabane Hime (Corpse Princess)

Over at Pink Raygun, they have been running a series of articles about zombies. This is how we found out about Hulu showing Shikabane Hime for free. Ah, zombie anime.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

World War Z Concept Art

Over at, they have a nice feature on artist Daniel LuVisi's attempt to get work on the World War Z movie as a concept artist.

© Daniel LuVisi

FEARnet needs your help!!!! Horror Fans Unite!!!

It has just come to our attention that Time Warner and Bright House Cable have dropped FEARnet from their programming line-ups. We have to send a message and let them know we're not going to sit here and let our horror channel go quietly into the night. As horror fans, we are many, and the many are Un-Frickin-Happy.

We want our channel back! We want horror 24/7. We want movies like the uncut Midnight Meat Train, Phantasm, Army of Darkness, Night of the Creeps and the 5 unaired episodes of Fear Itself! We want our FEARnet!

Time Warner and Bright House have decided to eliminate our on-demand access to horror, thriller and suspense movies 24/7. If you want to once again see FEARnet on your cable system, your cable operator needs to hear from you. Call 1-877-FEAR-247, FEARnet will connect you with your operator and you can let them know you want FEARnet back. NOW.

Click the link below and join the FEARnet petition or again, if you're a Time Warner or Bright House subscriber, call 1-877-FEAR-247. FEARnet will connect you with your local operator and you can let them know how you feel.

For the love of horror, do it today...

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

I've Got to Stop Watching Movies

Just for a while. Watched three of the most profoundly affecting films I've ever seen in the past few days. And although only one of them is ostensibly a HORROR film, these films were so thoroughly harrowing and thought-provoking that I'm actually terrified of trying to digest them all.

Saw "Let The Right One In" at my sister's place over the weekend. It's been on everyone's best-of lists, and it deserves to be. Bleak, beautiful urban scenery, haunting, creepy performance by an amazing young actress. Quality gore. Painful, aching memories of puppy love, adolescent ennui and out-of-placedness.

My brother-in-law sent me home with "Oldboy". Those of you who don't know about this film, take a look over at the guy in the corner who does know. Notice that he's not freaking out, yelling "that movie ROCKS!!" No, he's smiling and nodding confidently, knowing that when you get around to seeing it you will be knocked speechless. To say that it is an epic Korean revenge story tells you only a tenth of it. To say that it has an astonishing fight sequence that leaves the viewer as whimpering and exhausted as the fighters gets you a little closer.

And now I've just finished "Synecdoche." Lovely, poignant, at moments quite funny. But overall, I'm just exhausted. Like I've personally had to live through fifty years of neuroses, ill-considered choices, examining, re-examining, attempting to impose direction, yet still failing to understand. Will my life be that puzzling? Will I recognize the grandeur of the puzzle? Will it full of self-inflicted pain, or will a find a way to resign myself with dignity? Was all that really in the movie I just saw, or am I having an aneurism?

Seriously need to cleanse my mental palate. I think I'm too shattered to watch anything with a plot right now. Where's my lava lamp?

Madison Horror Film Festival now accepting submissions

This year's Madison Horror Film Festival is now accepting submissions!

Last year's event was great and this one looks to be even bigger as MHFF is hoping to run a two day event. Brain Dead that won the best special FX category of last year's event just received a limited theatrical run and was reviewed by Variety.

Initiaition which won in three categories last year has had limited television run in Canada and are closing in on a possible distribution deal.

Blood on the Highway that won best feature film from last year's festival is close to securing commercial distributions as well.

They are accepting submissions for all independent short and feature films in the horror genre. Submission guidelines, pricing and entry forms can be found on the submissions page at Priority submission deadline is September 4, 2009.

Jackie Earl Haley as Freddy Krueger

Well, I must say, as the inevitable parade of remakes continues, this one peaked my interest, and not simply because principle filming begins next month here in Chicago.

Jackie Earl Haley as Freddy Krueger?

OK, I am officially interested.

Friday, April 3, 2009

In Love with a Wookie...Sci-fi as a Gateway to Horror

So you've recently seen a photo of myself and a wookie at San Diego Comic Con last year...but our love began at a much earlier age. Here we are in Orlando at the Ewok at the tender age of 15 (and yes that is a fanny pack...if that isn't horrifying enough for this blog post...then I don't know what scary is anymore).

My love for all things sci-fi started with repeated Star Wars viewings at the age of two. I could not get enough of it and my parents took me to the theatre to see it at least four times. They then fed my cravings for more by bringing me home an action figure or a ship nearly every week. My father eagerly helped me cut out the upc's from the card backs to send in for Obi Wan and the much coveted Boba Fett! I still own the bulk of my star wars collectibles as well as throw pillow and Empire Strikes Back sleeping bag (which gets regular use to this day). From Star Wars I moved onto the saturday tv shows...Svengooli and creature features. Godzilla and Gamura. Wolfman and Sinbad. I loved my Ray Harryhausen...

Sci-fi proved to be a great 'gateway' drug to horror for me. There's probably a safer way to ease into the scary movies though...I went straight from Star Wars to Alien at the tender age of four. Let's just say my parents rarely curtailed my television viewing. I was petrified of spaghetti for quite some time. However I distinctly remember being more worried that the alien would eat the kitty then the alien eating Tom Skeritt.

I started reading science fiction books a couple years later. Ray Bradbury was a favorite. I remember pouring over the novelization of V and loving it...but being very confused by what a "guerilla" was. From there it was only a matter of time before I was working my way through Stephen King and Clive Barker wonder I was an insomniac.

Sigh...but all along my love for horror has only been rivaled by my love for science fiction (well maybe my love for superheroes is also a competitor). And nothing is better when the two mix it up peanut butter in my chocolate. Check out some of these for a sweet sweet taste...Event Horizon,Alien Quadrilogy, and The Ray Bradbury Theater