You know what's great about the internet? The fact that you don't even have to leave the house, to experience the kinds of things you used to have to leave the house to experience.
Case in point: composer Alan Howarth appeared at Los Angeles' Beyond Fest last night, where a 35mm print of John Carpenter's Assault on Precinct 13 was screened. Though you unfortunately had to be there to experience that aspect of the night, you're not going to have to leave your computer chair or even put on pants to enjoy the magic that happened after it.
Howarth came on stage and played tracks from many of the Carpenter films he has worked on, including Halloween 2 and Escape from New York. Our friends over at Shock Till You Drop were in attendance and they managed to film a couple snippets of the live performance, which are embedded below for your listening pleasure!
It's going to take awhile for us to get used to "Supernatural" being on Tuesday nights, but we'll happily follow the Winchesters anywhere they lead, especially after last night's strong return. Check out what's ahead in Episode 9.02, "Devil May Care."
"Supernatural" Episode 9.02 - "Devil May Care" (airs 10/15/13, 9-10pm)
ABADDON RISES — Dean (Jensen Ackles) shocks Sam (Jared Padalecki) by popping open the trunk of the Impala and showing him that he has kidnapped Crowley (Mark Sheppard). Kevin (guest star Osric Chau) freaks out when he sees the King of Hell, but Sam and Dean convince him that they need Crowley to find the demons on Earth.
Meanwhile, Abaddon (guest star Alaina Huffman) re-emerges and plans to take over Hell.
Guy Bee directed the episode written by Andrew Dabb.
If you're planning to attend this weekend's New York Comic Con and are a fan of "The Walking Dead," then pay close attention to this contest as you and a friend could win tickets to "The Walking Dead Escape" obstacle course. But you have to act fast...
We'll be taking entries for the NEXT 24 HOURS ONLY for fans of AMC's "The Walking Dead" to win tickets to live out the events of their favorite show with "The Walking Dead Escape," the official zombie obstacle course of "The Walking Dead." Each ticket is good for two people, and we have six tickets to give away.
It is taking place at Pier 86 by the Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum in New York City on Saturday, October 12, and the winners will be notified Thursday morning, October 10, so you can plan accordingly.
The course will be open for that one day only from 6:45 pm-12:00 midnight. Winners will be SURVIVORS. Survivors climb, crawl, and slide in an effort to avoid confrontation by hordes of walkers. If you’re lucky, you will reach the decontamination zone.
To enter for your chance to win, just send us an E-MAIL HERE including your FULL NAME and preferred EMAIL ADDRESS. We’ll take care of the rest.
Don't want to take your chances with our contest? Or maybe you want to be transformed into an undead walker by professional makeup teams and released on the course to haunt the living. Visit the official AMC "The Walking Dead" Blog or the official "The Walking Dead Escape" website for more details and to purchase tickets.
New York Comic Con is held at the Javits Center in Midtown Manhattan at 655 West 34th Street. Information about the event is available on the official New York Comic Con website.
The remastered classics just keep coming, and this time it's Icon Film Distribution stepping up to the plate to bring 1959's Peter Cushing chiller The Mummy back to hi-def life on Blu-ray in the UK on October 14th.
From the Press Release:
On 14th October Hammer’s classic film THE MUMMY will be released for the first time ever in HD on Blu-ray and on DVD double play and presented in its original UK theatrical aspect ratio of 1.66:1. Fans will also be treated to a host of brand new extras never seen before.
Starring Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee in their iconic roles in the third of Hammer’s original Gothic classics, THE MUMMY (1959) was directed by the legendary Terence Fisher, who previously helmed DRACULA and THE CURSE OF FRANKENSTEIN.
Available 14th October in the UK on 3-disc Double Play, the pack comprises 1 x Blu-ray and 2 x DVD; the release also includes brand new documentaries, a new expert commentary track from Marcus Hearn and Jonathan Rigby, and multiple bonus extras and a stills gallery.
One by one the archaeologists who discover the 4,000-year-old tomb of Princess Ananka are brutally murdered. Kharis (Lee), high priest in Egypt 40 centuries ago, has been brought to life by the power of the ancient gods, and his sole purpose is to destroy those responsible for the desecration of the sacred tomb. But Isobel Banning (Yvonne Furneaux), wife of one of the explorers (Cushing), resembles the beautiful princess, forcing the speechless and tormented monster to defy commands and abduct Isobel to an unknown fate...
Marking this as the most definitive edition of the Hammer classic to date, Icon's package comes in the form of a triple pack containing the hi-def Blu-ray and two DVDs, sporting a wide range of special features including:
DVD DISC 1
• Original UK theatrical aspect ratio: 1.66:1 (the film has never before been released at this aspect ratio)
• Alternate “full frame” aspect ratio: 1.37:1
• English HOH subtitles for both features
• Commentary – New expert commentary from Marcus Hearn & Jonathan Rigby
DVD DISC 2
• “Unwrapping the Mummy: The Making of a Hammer Classic” -- New documentary about the film’s creation and history
• “The Hammer Rep Company” -- New documentary about Hammer’s informal repertory company of actors.
• “Stolen Face” – bonus feature (Terence Fisher’s 1952 crime drama, 72 mins.)
• “The House of Horror: Memories of Bray” – Hammer’s all-new documentary (45 mins.) which will premiere on Hammer’s YouTube channel before the Double Play release
• “Hammer Stars: Peter Cushing” – The World of Hammer episode
• HD Archive/Stills Gallery
• Original industry promo reel restored to HD (6 mins.)
• PDF booklet by Hammer archivist Robert J. E. Simpson
The wizards at Arrow Video have been focusing their brain waves on bringing another cult treasure to hi-def life in the UK, and the result is a brand new restoration of Brian De Palma's The Fury, hitting shelves on October 28th. Don't stare too long...
From the Press Release:
Marking the film’s UK Blu-ray premiere in style, Arrow’s team of restorers have breathed new life into this telekinetic masterpiece – it’s crystal clear, incredibly vibrant and has been newly graded, all the while keeping true to Richard H. Kline’s brilliant original cinematography. 2013 year marks THE FURY’s 35th birthday... it’s never looked better.
Restoration Supervisor James White says of the project – "It's been a great honour to restore THE FURY, a truly fantastic film by one of my favourite directors. Its combination of sci-fi, horror and post-Watergate paranoia thriller makes it one of the key titles in Brian De Palma's filmography, although some fans may be less familiar with the film due to its poor treatment on home video until now. Thankfully, this new restoration, struck directly from the original camera negative and carefully restored to preserve the full colour palette and subtleties of Richard Kline's masterly cinematography, should reaffirm the film's reputation as one of De Palma's greatest works, as well as a key film in American 1970s cinema. Finally audiences can see THE FURY as it was meant to be seen."
Arrow’s deluxe edition of THE FURY will come loaded with a never-before-seen selection of special features, bonus material and an in-depth collector’s booklet, many of which have been independently sourced and appear here for the very first time.
Brian De Palma followed the huge success of Carrie with another slice of telekinetic horror, upping the ante by featuring more than one psychic.
John Cassavetes gives his most sinister performance since Rosemary's Baby as a man who kidnaps the telepathic son of his colleague (Kirk Douglas), aiming to turn him and similarly gifted individuals into human weapons. Meanwhile, Gillian (Amy Irving) is worried enough about the destructive potential of her own powers to agree to be institutionalised - but is the Paragon Institute all that it's cracked up to be?
De Palma pulls out all the stops with some spectacular set-pieces (including one that will put viewers off fairground rides for life) before a spectacularly explosive climax that unforgettably demonstrates why Gillian is so afraid of her powers. She can trigger nosebleeds without any effort, so how much damage can she do when she's actually trying to hurt someone?
- "Blood on the Lens": An interview with Cinematographer Richard H. Kline
- "Spinning Tales": Fiona Lewis on starring in The Fury
- "The Fury - A Location Journal": An interview with Sam Irvin, intern on The Fury, author of the film’s shooting diary and then correspondent for Cinefantastique magazine
- Original archive interviews from the 1978 promotional tour, featuring Brian De Palma, producer Frank Yablans and stars Carrie Snodgress and Amy Irving
- "Double Negative": A short film tribute to Brian De Palma by Sam Irvin, starring William Finley
- Gallery of behind-the-scenes production images
- Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Jay Shaw
- Booklet featuring new writing on the film by Chris Dumas, author of Un-American Psycho: Brian De Palma and the Political Invisible, as well as a re-print of a contemporary interview with Brian De Palma and a brand new interview with screenwriter John Farris on the writing of the film, his and De Palma’s unrealised adaptation of Alfred Bester’s The Demolished Man and more, illustrated with original stills and posters
The Season 4 premiere of "The Walking Dead" is ready to march on in like a herd of hungry walkers, and to get you geared up for the event, we have a quintet of new video promos! Dig 'em!
"The Walking Dead" returns to AMC on Sunday, October 13th.
Based on the comic book series written by Robert Kirkman and published by Image Comics, "The Walking Dead" stars Andrew Lincoln, Norman Reedus, Steven Yeun, Lauren Cohan, Chandler Riggs, Scott Wilson, Melissa McBride, David Morrissey, Emily Kinney, Danai Gurira, Chad Coleman, and Sonequa Martin-Green. The series is executive produced by Scott M. Gimple, Robert Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd, David Alpert, Tom Luse, and Greg Nicotero.
"The Walking Dead" Episode 4.01, "30 Days Without an Accident" (10/13/13) - SEASON 4 PREMIERE
Rick and the group are as close to an ideal life as possible at the prison. Will they be able to hold on to humanity in the face of a new evil? Written by Scott Gimple and directed by Greg Nicotero.
To stay up-to-the-minute on all things walker related, follow @WalkingDead_AMC on Twitter and visit "The Walking Dead" on Facebook. For more be sure to hit up the official "The Walking Dead" page on AMC.com.
For a show so insanely weird and hyperkinetic, the most impressive thing about "American Horror Story" is how controlled the chaos is. While the like-minded "True Blood" has drowned in its own excess...
..."Horror Story" creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk know how to make even their most whackadoo ideas stick while serving the overall narrative.
Like dueling cable shows "Breaking Bad" and "Dexter," "American Horror Story" is the perfect yin to "True Blood"’s sloppy yang, and those comparisons will run rampant this year given the fem-centric "Coven" is set against a New Orleans backdrop and deals largely with societal outcasts.
Last year’s "Asylum" threw the kitchen sink directly in our face with crazed nuns, mental patients, Nazis, aliens, mutants and Anne Frank(!). "Coven" wastes no time delivering the same psychotic mix of violence, sex and revisionist history all set around “Miss Robichaux's Academy for Exceptional Young Ladies” – a sort of Hogwarts/Xavier-like boarding school for young witches. The newest occupant is season protagonist Zoe (Taissa Farmiga returning from Season One) in the “Rogue” role as a young witch who discovers her unfortunate powers to kill by way of sexual intercourse.
Of course, there is a host of demented plot-lines and characters that are set to converge, and the roles are largely comprised of actors from the previous two seasons playing different parts, with newcomers like Kathy Bates, Angela Bassett, Emma Roberts and Gabourey Sidibe appropriately bringing their eccentricities to the cast. Naturally, Jessica Lange is front and center in this fantastic ensemble, once again bringing her crazed sexuality and power to Fiona Goode, an aging witch who is struggling with her own mortality.
I won’t dare spoil the surprises in the first hour alone, but rest assured that "Coven" gets the ball rolling with some risqué subjects and sets the stage for some major conflicts. And given the show’s history, I have no doubt we’ll see every strange twist and turn culminate into a satisfying and emotional experience.
So far, so good.
The full "Coven" cast includes Frances Conroy, Taissa Farmiga, Jessica Lange, Alexandra Breckenridge, Kathy Bates, Lily Rabe, Sarah Paulson, Jamie Brewer, Evan Peters, Gabourey Sidibe, Angela Bassett, Patti LuPone, Christine Ebersole, Danny Huston, Alexander Dreymon, Leslie Jordan, James DuMont, and Denis O'Hare.
"American Horror Story: Coven" Episode 3.01 - "Bitchcraft" (airs 10/9/13)
A young girl, Zoe (Taissa Farmiga), is shattered to discover she possesses a strange genetic affliction tracing back to the dark days of Salem. Zoe is whisked away to Miss Robichaux’s Academy for Exceptional Young Ladies, a mysterious school in New Orleans devoted to safeguarding the few remaining descendants who share this unique bloodline. Harboring a secret agenda, Fiona Goode (Jessica Lange), the most powerful witch of their generation, returns to town, reigniting old rivalries with the Coven’s deadly enemies, the Voodoo.
Things Go from Bad to Worse for Katherine in New Clip from The Vampire Diaries Episode 5.02 - True Lies
So far in Season 5 of "The Vampire Diaries," Katherine's looking a bit worse for wear, and in this new clip from Episode 5.02, "True Lies," to add insult to injury, she's got a bad case of the sniffles.
"The Vampire Diaries" Episode 5.02 - "True Lies" (airs 10/10/13, 8-9pm)
MISSING PERSONS — Without telling Elena (Nina Dobrev) that Stefan (Paul Wesley) is missing, Damon (Ian Somerhalder) turns to Sheriff Forbes (Marguerite MacIntyre) for help finding his brother. Elena and Caroline (Candice Accola) try to find out who is covering up a campus murder, and a fellow Whitmore student named Jesse (guest star Kendrick Sampson) gives Elena some intriguing information about Professor Wes Maxfield (guest star Rick Cosnett).
While Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen) struggles to return to his old life, he continues to be the only person who can see and talk to Bonnie (Kat Graham), but he can’t convince her that it’s time to let the others know that she sacrificed her own life for his. After learning that Silas is searching for Katherine, Damon asks Matt (Zach Roerig) and Jeremy to keep her out of sight, but the situation quickly spirals out of control. Finally, Nadia (guest star Olga Fonda) uses violence to make a point about her own agenda. Joshua Butler directed the episode written by Brian Young.
In just a few hours "The Originals" lands in its regular Tuesday 8PM ET/PT spot on The CW, and in honor of the occasion we have three more previews of Episode 1.02, "House of the Rising Son."
These aren't just regular previews either - each is introduced by one of the show's stars, including Joseph Morgan (Klaus), Charles Michael Davis (Marcel), and Phoebe Tonkin (Hayley).
"The Originals" Episode 1.02 - "House of the Rising Son" (airs 10/8/13, 8-9pm; repeats 10/10/13, 9-10)
A FLASHBACK TO THE 1800s — When Rebekah (Claire Holt) arrives in New Orleans at her brother Elijah’s (Daniel Gillies) insistence, she meets Hayley (Phoebe Tonkin), who gives her some unexpected news. Concerned that her brother Klaus is up to no good, Rebekah seeks help from a reluctant Sophie (Daniella Pineda). At her wits’ end, Hayley takes matters into her own hands, but things quickly take a dangerous turn.
Determined to uncover Marcel’s (Charles Michael Davis) secret weapon, Klaus stays one step ahead and executes his plan. Meanwhile, after a run-in with Marcel, Rebekah is reminded of all the anger and disappointment Klaus has caused her throughout the years. Finally, Marcel enlists Davina’s (Danielle Campbell) help in his own dangerous plan.
Leah Pipes also stars. Brad Turner directed the episode written by Diane Ademu-John and Declan de Barra.
For gamers who crave supernatural mysteries and great storytelling, the classic Sierra adventure Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Father pretty much remains the greatest game ever made. With the rise of tablet gaming, fans have been clamoring for a re-release, and it looks like our prayers have finally been answered.
In what may be the most exciting news all month, creator and game designer Jane Jensen has announced that a 20th Anniversary remake is in the works and launched an official website with a few sneak peek images of the HD version.
The remastered Gabriel Knight is currently planned for a 2014 multi-platform release on PC, Mac, iPad and Android.
As thrilled as we are about this news, there's one catch: Jensen was unable to get rights to the original audio tracks, which means the new edition will have completely new voice recordings. Considering the original had the best voice cast and narrator in gaming history, it's a bit sad that we won't be listening to Virginia Capers' evocative voodoo voice in the redux. No word on whether the great Tim Curry is returning, but odds are we won't hear supporting actors Mark Hamill and Leah Rimini reprising their roles this time.
Regardless, this is incredibly exciting news for adventure gamers - and one step closer to making Gabriel Knight 4 a reality!
It was just about a year ago that we learned the paranormal comedy series "Strange Calls" had landed at ABC with a put pilot commitment. In layman's terms, that meant that they agreed to produce and air a pilot episode of the show and that they were pretty certain the series would be picked up.
According to Deadline today, ABC has now given a cast-contingent pickup to the half-hour comedy, which means that the full green light will be given to the project as soon as actors are found that the network is happy with. In other words, things are moving along as planned.
Donick Cary ("New Girls") wrote the adaptation and will serve as showrunner, with Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland) set to direct the pilot. The two executive produce with Aaron Kaplan ("The Neighbors") and Tracey Robertson and Nathan Mayfield, executive producers of the original series, which was produced by their company Hoodlum. 20th Century Fox TV, where Fleischer is under an overall deal, is producing with Kapital Entertainment and Hoodlum.
Based on an Australian series — which coincidentally also airs on ABC (Australia’s ABC2) – "Strange Calls" centers on good-hearted, bumbling Boston cop Toby Banks, who is exiled to night duty on Nantucket island, where strange, unexplainable occurrences become the norm nine months out of the year. Working out of a creaky lighthouse on the outskirts of town, he is teamed with Gregor, the eccentric lighthouse keeper and local paranormal authority. The two make an unlikely crimefighting duo dealing with the “strange calls” that come into the station at night.
Check out a trailer for the original series below, and expect more soon!
The first clip from the upcoming spooker from Vincenzo Natali, entitled Haunter (review here) starring Abigail Breslin, has arrived for you cats to dig on! Check it out!
The screenplay is by Brian King with Steven Hoban and Mark Smith producing. The film stars Abigail Breslin, Stephen McHattie, Peter Outerbridge, Michelle Nolden, and David Hewlett. Look for it soon from IFC Midnight/Sundance Selects/IFC Films.
Lisa Johnson (Breslin) is one day shy of her sixteenth birthday. And she will be forever. She and her family are dead and doomed to repeat that fateful last day before they were all killed in 1985. Only Lisa has “woken up” and realizes what is going on. She starts to feel as if she is being haunted, but the “ghost” turns out to be Olivia, a very much alive girl who lives in the house in the present day with her own family. With her help, Lisa discovers that the house once belonged to a serial killer who kidnapped teenage girls and burned their remains in a hidden furnace room. When he died, he became a Haunter – a powerful, evil spirit able to possess the living.
After Dark Originals has set its sights on bringing the horror world the long talked about flick Mischief Night, and we have all the current details as well as a new one-sheet for you guys. Check it out!
From the Press Release
After Dark Films proudly announces the seventh film in its After Dark Originals 2 series (ADO2), Mischief Night, a story that takes place on the most devilish night of the year where things are not always as they seem.
Mischief Night marks the directorial debut of Travis Baker, starring Brooke Anne Smith ("CSI: Crime Scene Investigation"), Marc Valera ("Melrose Place"), and Malcolm McDowell (A Clockwork Orange, Rob Zombie's Halloween).
"After Dark is always on the lookout for material that breaks the mold. Mischief Night's story and its characters are truly demented. We are excited to offer our audience something refreshingly new in the world of horror.” --Stephanie Caleb, Executive Vice President, Creative Affairs at After Dark Films.
"With Mischief Night, I wanted to subvert all expectations of the slasher film, while also demonstrating due reverence for the immortal classics of the genre. It's a unique Halloween/Breakfast Club mash-up that's frightening, funny, dramatic, romantic... and above all else, very mischievous. My producer Richard Tanne and I are thrilled to be working with After Dark to bring our movie to the widest audience possible." --Travis Baker, Director.
Kaylie is just like most other girls her age. She babysits, enjoys stealing from her parents’ liquor cabinet, and has boys who like her. The only difference between Kylie and other girls is that the boy who likes her wants to KILL her. On Mischief Night, the night before Halloween, Kylie’s true nature is revealed when she is attacked by a psycho who wants nothing more than to see her insides.
The Slash-produced Nothing Left to Fear landed on Blu-ray, DVD, and On Demand outlets today. If you're unsure about whether or not you want to check it out, perhaps a creepy sheep-infested clip will persuade you. Check it out baaahh-low!
The cast includes Clancy Brown (The Shawshank Redemption), Anne Heche (Psycho, Rampart), James Tupper (Mr Popper’s Penguins), Jennifer Stone (Wizards of Waverly Place), Ethan Peck (In Time), and Rebekah Brandes (Bellflower).
Nothing Left to Fear is the first feature from the horror shingle launched by iconic rocker Slash (Guns N’ Roses, Velvet Revolver) and Academy-Award winning producer Michael Williams and Rob Eric (Transsiberian, Session 9, The Fog of War). At the directing helm is Gore Verbinski protégé Anthony Leonardi III, who has worked alongside Verbinski on such films as Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, Rango, and The Lone Ranger. Leonardi has also worked as a creature designer on many films, including Francis Lawrence’s Constantine and 47 Ronin.
Nothing Left to Fear is the tale of a family whose journey towards a better life in a small town is savagely derailed by a charismatic but emotionally conflicted man of the cloth. The movie is based on the actual town of Stull, Kansas, which is surrounded by Internet folklore proclaiming the town to be one of the seven gateways to Hell.
A truly gorgeous new one-sheet for All the Boys Love Mandy Lane has hit the Internet, and we're just loving it. Check it out, and thank the video gods that after 7 years this one is FINALLY coming out!
Starring Amber Heard and Anson Mount, All the Boys Love Mandy Lane is about a group of high-schoolers who invite Mandy Lane, “a good girl” who becomes the object of everyone’s affection after returning from summer break, to a weekend party on a secluded ranch. While the festivities rage on, the number of revelers begins to mysteriously drop one at a time.
All the Boys Love Mandy Lane, from director Jonathan Levine (Warm Bodies), is available On Demand now and arrives in theaters October 11th – seven years after its Toronto Film Festival Midnight premiere.
According to Levine, “I am thrilled that MANDY LANE has been rescued and is back where it belongs with Harvey and Bob [Weinstein]. Hard to believe it's been seven years, but then again I’ve always perceived myself as a misunderstood artist who was light years ahead of his time, so I am thrilled the world has finally caught up. Seriously, I am incredibly proud of the film and of the hard work that my cast and collaborators put into it, and I am so happy the world will finally get a chance to see it.”
The Machete movies are known for several things in particular... violence, Danny Trejo's burning desire to be shirtless as much as possible and for as long as possible, and hot chicks. Very, very hot chicks. Speaking of which...
Read our Machete Kills review!
Machete Kills is directed by Robert Rodriguez (Machete, Sin City, Spy Kids franchise) from a screenplay by Kyle Ward based on a story by Marcel Rodriguez and Robert Rodriguez. The film stars Danny Trejo, Michelle Rodriguez, Sofia Vergara, Amber Heard, Carlos Estevez/Charlie Sheen, Lady Gaga, Antonio Banderas, Jessica Alba, Demián Bichir, Alexa Vega, Vanessa Hudgens, Cuba Gooding, Jr., William Sadler, Marko Zaror, and Mel Gibson.
In Machete Kills, Danny Trejo returns as ex-Federale agent Machete, who is recruited by the President of the United States for a mission which would be impossible for any mortal man - he must take down a madman revolutionary and an eccentric billionaire arms dealer who has hatched a plan to spread war and anarchy across the planet.
Dread Central hopped a flight to Las Vegas, Nevada, on Thursday, October 3, in order to cover the opening of the haunt attraction Fright Dome at Adventuredome at Circus Circus, and we came back with not only a celebrity-filled gallery from the black carpet but also a report!
Arriving to the gusty Fright Dome carpet, we were beset by a menagerie of scare actors hired by Fright Dome creator and owner Jason Egan, who in true Tod Browning fashion had employed (among the requisite clowns and chainsaw-wielding madmen) individuals with actual physical anomalies, which were accentuated by entirely professional makeups. In addition to the duo of Johnny Eck-like young women with truncated torsos (who were made up as zombies and dashed about the carpet using their hands as locomotion), another actor sported a gruesome facial makeup which served to highlight his entirely empty optical orb (the result of sinus cancer, I was later told), as did the green chemical light which had been unnervingly inserted inside.
Of the celebrities attending the carpet, Chromeskull: Laid to Rest 2 actress and Motley Crue back-up singer Allison Kyler made an appearance, as did Motley Crue frontman Vince Neil, who seemed generally enthralled with the oddities about him. Joining them were actor Sid Haig (The Devil’s Rejects), Playboy’s 2011 ‘Playmate of the Year’ Claire Sinclair (airbrushed to undead vamp’ish perfection), Guns N’ Roses lead guitarist Dj Ashba, rock star artist Michael Godard, comedy hypnotist Marc Savard, comedian Matt Black, celebrity magician Murray SawChuck, Fright Dome head Jason Egan, Circus Circus President Don Thrasher, and the belles of the ball, The Collector and The Collection director Marcus Dunstan along with series co-writer Patrick Melton.
Joining them were series lead Josh Stewart and The Collection co-stars Emma Fitzpatrick and Randall Archer, as well as camera operator (and director) BJ McDonnell, FX artist Adrienne Lynn, and producers Brett Forbes and Patrick Rizzotti of Fortress Features, all there to celebrate the attraction’s maze recreations of their films (‘The Collector’ haunted house is based on the 2009 film of the same name, and ‘Hotel Argento’ the 2012 flick The Collection.)
General admission tickets start at $32.95, and fast pass tickets are available for an additional $15 to $20, which allows express line entry for all six haunted houses. For more details and to purchase tickets, visit Fright Dome online.
With the carpet wrapped, we entered the sweeping, fog-filled 250,000-square-foot facility and were happily marauded by monsters the second we stepped in. (Did I mention the level of makeup expertise on hand? If not, let me be clear: It is stellar.). Following a VIP reception and open bar (which served cleverly named concoctions based on The Collector film series) with the filmmakers, we set off with Dunstan, Melton, Kyler and crew to partake in the mazes offered.
First off was ‘The Collection,’ and if Dunstan and Archer’s giddy response was any indication (it was unsurprisingly an absolute joy for them to venture through the physical recreation of their cinematic effort), park-goers can indeed expect a similarly thrilling journey.
‘Hotel Argento’ (based on The Collection) was the maze which intrigued us the most, however, given its ‘enter it alone’ motif, and we quickly made our way there. Gathered outside, we enjoyed watching the CCT feed on the suspended flat panel above us of other attendees as they made their way alone through the maze, but not nearly as much as we did venturing into it ourselves. With effects supplied by the series’ FX lead designer Gary Tunnicliffe, the ghastly production design of ‘Hotel Argento’ and the scares subsequent lent to an entirely chill-inducing journey into the cinematic killer’s lair.
A tour through the maze ‘Clownophobia 3D’ was next, and once again we were met with a lengthy, engaging and fear-inducing excursion. The maze was so long, in fact, that if seemed an endurance test, particularly for this writer. At one point the words “FML, I need a drink,” came from my lips, to which Dunstan responded by magically producing a cold beer from his suit jacket. (I’m still not sure how you did that, Dunstan, or what a ‘three-legged Clydesdale’ means, but thanks!)
While we didn’t hit the other three mazes (‘Camp Chainsaw,’ ‘Zombie Quarantine’ and ‘Thi3teen’), we did take an adrenaline-fueled ride on Adventuredome’s roller coaster ‘Canyon Blaster’ (it’s a short trip but an entirely effective one, with two back-to-back loops sure to please coaster enthusiasts). Hopping into a limo afterward, Dunstan and I and The Collector crew closed the night out at a whiskey bar over drinks and conversation, much of which centered on the entertaining experience we’d just partaken in.
Said Dunstan regarding Fright Dome, ”I expected to be scared, and Fright Dome delivered that in spades, but what I didn’t expect was to get choked up! The attention to detail was astounding! There was a moment in the middle of the ‘The Collector’ and ‘Hotel Argento’ mazes where Brett, Rizzotti, Patrick, Emma and Josh and I all looked at each other with beaming smiles, thrilled to see our collaboration come to life. Our parents and siblings were there to make it a traumatizing family affair to boot! It was a marvelous experience.”
Writer’s note: I’ve hit the majority of haunts in SoCal this season, and while I haven’t had a bad time yet, Las Vegas’ Fright Dome was the most enjoyable by far.
When a haunt begins with you walking up to a giant pair of legs and squeezing your way into an oversized vagina, you know you’re in for some serious shit. That’s what Dread Central is greeted with when we step foot on the FEARplex to preview Rob Zombie’s Great American Nightmare!
Zombie is no stranger to haunted attractions, having ironically worked with Universal the past several years on House of 1000 Corpses mazes for Halloween Horror Nights. But for this event, he’s gone off on his own and teamed up with producer Steve Kopelman to create three mazes based on his films: House of 1000 Corpses, The Haunted World of El Superbeasto, and Lords of Salem.
Greeting us at the construction site, Zombie and Kopelman elaborate on the differences between this new House of 1000 Corpses maze compared to previous years:
“Universal was great to work with, too,” Zombie says, “Since it’s based off the movie, I guess it’s always my vision, but in both cases they chose to take different elements and run with it. This is more taking The Murder Ride and expanding it into its own big attraction, so it’s kind of different than Universal.”
Stepping through the Corpses maze, the biggest surprise is how large and graphic it is. Along with several set pieces from the movie, viewers get to experience a massively expanded Murder Ride that contains depictions of Elizabeth Bathory, Jeffrey Dahmer, David Berkowitz and the Manson/Sharon Tate murders – with no disgusting detail spared. The amount of gore and nudity packed into this event would never fly at a big theme park like Universal, and it’s clear that Zombie is throwing everything he has at these mazes.
Equally vile is the cartoon sex world of El Superbeasto, which is designed in psychedelic 3D, complete with devil strippers and party demons. But the biggest endurance test for visitors will be the Lords of Salem maze, which is a complete sensory deprivation experience that attendees will endure with a bag over their head. “About 50 percent of the people who enter will chicken out,” claims Kopelman.
Even touring the half-constructed mazes in broad daylight, there’s a definite feeling that the Great American Nightmare is a new Halloween staple in the works. If its inaugural year is successful, Zombie says he’d like to expand the attraction to different places across the USA: “That’s the plan, to do it every year and to do it in more markets next year, take it to other states… perhaps other countries.”
Tickets for Rob Zombie’s Great American Nightmare are available now starting at only $30 at the Great American Nightmare Website. Each ticket includes access to all haunted house attractions, concerts, and Bloody Boulevard activities. VIP packages will also be available for purchase at the Great American Nightmare Website.
On tap right now is an exclusive clip from Warner Bros.' 40th Anniversary Exorcist Blu-ray, and with it we go a little bit behind the scenes. Check it out, and look for more on this badass home video package soon!
From the Press Release
When The Exorcist was first released in 1973, viewers were frightened out of their wits - and literally out of their seats. Now Warner Bros. Home Entertainment (WBHE) will celebrate the 40th anniversary of Academy Award® winning director William Friedkin’s suspense masterpiece that haunted and intrigued the world with a new Blu-ray release featuring the Extended Director’s Cut and Theatrical Version with new special features and premiums ($49.99 SRP). Available October 8, just ahead of Halloween, this 40th Anniversary Edition will include two new featurettes: “Beyond Comprehension: William Peter Blatty's The Exorcist” and “Talk of the Devil,” as well as an excerpt from Friedkin’s book The Friedkin Connection: A Memoir.
A true cinema landmark, the theological thriller is one of the top ten box-office performers of all time. The Exorcist took 10 Academy Award® nominations, including Best Picture, and won two Oscars® for Best Adapted Screenplay, as well as winning for Best Sound. Subsequently, the film went on to become a multi-million dollar franchise. Directed by Friedkin (Oscar®-winner for The French Connection - Directing 1971) and written by William Peter Blatty, the film is based on his best-selling novel, which sold nearly 13 million copies domestically and was the #1 book on the New York Times Best Seller List for 57 weeks, 17 of them at #1.
Regarding the Extended Director’s Cut, Friedkin says, “After my initial cut, I took out 12 more minutes before we released it in theatres. Years later, Bill Blatty asked if I’d review some of that rejected footage (which he always felt should have remained) with an eye towards putting it back in a new version. In so doing I believe we strengthened the spiritual aspect of the film.”
Celebrated for his directorial role in this seminal film, Friedkin is still very much in the limelight. His new book, The Friedkin Connection: A Memoir, recently published by HarperCollins, extensively discusses the background and casting of The Exorcist. The Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films will honor Friedkin this month with their Lifetime Achievement Award for his continually influential work in genre entertainment at this year’s Saturn Awards. In August Friedkin will receive the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement at the 70th Venice International Film Festival, where he will present the restored version of Warner Bros.’ Sorcerer. And Friedkin and author Blatty will attend a special 40th Anniversary screening of their film at the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C., on October 30. The film will also have an exclusive theatrical engagement October 31 through November 7th at the AMC Georgetown.
The Exorcist tells the now-famous story of a girl’s demonic possession, and a gripping fight between good and evil. Linda Blair, in a breakout role, plays Regan, a young girl who starts to exhibit strange, arcane behavior. Her mother (Ellen Burstyn, Oscarâ-winner for Best Actress Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore) calls upon a priest, Father Karras (Jason Miller) to investigate. But Karras, who has a spiritual crisis of his own, is suddenly confronted with the unimaginable evil of Regan’s possession. Father Lankester Merrin (Max Von Sydow), an archeologist-priest, is called to help, and a horrific battle for her soul begins.
With Patricio Valladares' Hidden in the Woods remake of his 2012 Chilean horror film of the same name now in post-production, a few more behind-the-scenes stills from the set have come our way.
Hidden in the Woods is a remake of Patricio Valladares' En las afueras de la ciudad with Valladares back at the helm. The story follows two sisters raised by their abusive father in a remote locale who must answer to their drug baron uncle when their father is imprisoned.
Michael Biehn stars alongside William Forsythe. Jennifer Blanc-Biehn produces with Loris Curci and Hackybox Pictures. The film's co-stars include MMA fighter Krzysztof Soszynski, Chris Browning ("Sons of Anarchy," The Book of Eli), Ricco Ross (Aliens), Jeannine Kaspar (“House of Lies,” “Nip/Tuck”), Andy Mackenzie (Sushi Girl, "True Blood"), Electra Avellan (Grindhouse, Machete Kills), Mark Burnham (Wrong, Wrong Cops), Jennifer Blanc (The Victim, Wrong Cops), and Richard Gunn (“Granite Flats,” “Dark Angel”) along with Caitlin Keats (Broken English, Kill Bill Volume 2, Treachery), Mark Gantt (The Night Visitor, Among Friends), Evie Louise Thompson (The Call, Heebie Jeebies), Nick Bateman (Hobo With a Shotgun), Cody Hackman (Tapped), Grace Powell (Jacob), Larry Carroll (Dark Horse, Jacob), Cheryl Hawker ("My Name Is Earl"), and Greg Ingram (Machete).
Hidden in the Woods tells the story of two sisters who have been raised in isolation, subjected to the torment of their abusive, drug dealing father. When they finally decide to report him to the police, he kills the two officers and is put in jail. But things go from bad to worse when the girls must answer to their Uncle Costello, a psychotic drug kingpin, who shows up looking for his missing merchandise which is hidden in the woods.