Monday, September 15, 2014

Monster Monday: The Sleeping Room

This is a Gothic, psychological tale of Victorian revenge.
About a young call girl named Blue, drawn to Brighton - 
compelled to find out the truth behind her family history.
Discovering a hidden chamber within a Regency house whilst with a client,
a terrifying supernatural force is unleashed, infiltrating her psyche.
This monster from her families past seems hell-bent on claiming her future.
And nobody will escape its power unless a score for a heinous felony is settled.

The film is due out on DVD and VOD in the UK and the US in early 2015,
but the production company is raising funds for print and advertising now.
You can donate to their campaign, which ends in just three days, here!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

A toast to Madeleine Collinson

July 22, 1952 - August 14, 2014

All the movie going years of my pre-teen and teen years were a lot of fun,
but 1964 and 1972 were extra special.
In the Summer of 1964, I saw my first Godzilla film on the big screen,
and my love of Hammer horror deepened with a re-release double bill of Curse of Frankenstein and Horror of Dracula, and new Hammer like The Evil of Frankenstein,
Curse of the Mummy's Tomb and The Gorgon.
It was also the final Summer before I started school and experienced real horror,
like the first day of kindergarten. The Summer of 1972 was special,
because it was my last Summer before starting 7th grade and high school.
The high school years were still carefree, 
but as they progressed they became more complicated.
It was the Summer I was introduced on the big screen to the Spanish Wolf Man, 
Paul Naschy, and more Hammer horror, and the Collinson twins, Mary and Madeleine,
in the outstanding Twins of Evil.

Twins of Evil was also the first film I saw that had nudity in it.
Even without the nude scenes, Madeleine Collinson's performance (Mary is equally great) 
was seared into my memory forever, and for my two cents,
she is one of the best cinematic female vampires of all time.
I kept waiting to see her in another horror film, but it wasn't to be,
and Twins of Evil, was, in fact, her final film.
I never met her and didn't know her personally,
but Madeleine Collinson lingered in my memory long after that night at the drive-in.
She was part of the carefree times and wistful innocence.
The elusive silver screen goddess I loved from afar.
May her journey and stay in the great beyond be one of peace.

This post was written by Conrad Widener.

It's Spectember!
Join us every week this month for a toast
to a favorite female star who's now a ghost
forever haunting our hearts.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Monster Monday: Ghostbusters

They came. They saw. They kicked Beetlejuice's ass!
In the favorite 80's phantom flick poll.
(Just by one vote though!)

Get the Ghostbusters Paper Dolls here!

Sadly I missed seeing Ghostbusters on the big screen last week,
but watched it on DVD, along with the behind the scenes stuff.
 Which I learned these two fascinating tidbits from:

1. The ghoul in this story from Vault of Horror #28
was going to be used as a character in the film:

You can read the rest here!

2. John Candy was set to play the role of Louis Tully!
They even drew storyboards with him:

Details on these deleted Bum Sequence storyboards here!

According to Ivan Reitman in the DVD commentary, 
John Candy quit the role because his ideas for the character were being rejected.
He wanted the character to have a German accent and a pair of schnauzer dogs. 
Everyone felt the German accent wasn't appropriate for the character though,
and that there was already enough “dog imagery” with the Terror Dogs.
So, he quit early in production and Rick Moranis was cast at the last minute.

You can see John and his dogs in issue #4 of the Ghostbusters comic though!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

A toast to Arlene Martel

When Arlene Martel passed away on August 12, 2014, I couldn't believe she was 78.
To me, she was still Arline Sax (her real name), the hypnotically beautiful actress
I first saw in "The Hunted" episode of The Rebel starring Nick Adams.
I was a lad of five then, and Arline Sax was added to my list of favorite actresses.
Strangely enough, Arline's co-star in that episode is none other than Leonard Nimoy,
whom she would reunite with for Star Trek's "Amok Time"!

She changed her name to Arlene Martel,
appearing in just about every TV series from the 1960's and 70's,
including The Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits, and The Monkees.
She was a welcome face in any TV show as I was growing up,
and my Mom even took me to see her in the biker film Angels From Hell (1968)
at my request.

Arlene as Ginger in Angels From Hell

Arlene Martel never gave a lousy performance, 
and will forever be fondly remembered.

This post was written by Conrad Widener.

I just want to add that I owe Arlene for my nurse obsession.

"Room for one more, honey"

Join us every week this month for a toast
to a favorite female star who's now a ghost 
forever haunting our hearts.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Happy Baturday!

In celebration of International Bat Night and the 75th anniversary of Batman,
I've invited my Batman fanatic friend Jason Ghoulscout here for a Bat chat!
(Perhaps the first of many!)

Hi, my name's Jason....and I'm a Bataholic.
Holly wanted me to talk a little about myself, 
so I hope I don't put everyone asleep by my rambling. 
First I have to start off by saying I am a huge fan of Batman, 
and even though the official day of his 75th Anniversary has passed, 
I'm too much of a geek to not celebrate for the rest of the year...
so lucky you, it's show and tell day. lol.
I buy A LOT of batcrap, things like figures, deco, mugs, 
and of course, too many t-shirts.

Batmom and I. As you can see, it runs in the family.

One of my most recent purchases was an ebay listing of some goodies
they were making available at the 2014 San Diego Comic-Con;
a swag bag with an image of Adam West and Burt Ward on it from the 1960's Batman TV show, the Jim Lee produced Batman cover souvenir book, Batman car decal,
one of the Ryan Sook designed paper bat masks (still need to buy the other three),
and what has to be one of my favorite items in the package,
a 75th Anniversary poster made up of Batman comic book covers over the years.

Hey! Do I hear snoring?
Most of the exposure to my favorite detective has been through TV and movies, 
so it was inevitable it would lead me to getting involved in some field of entertainment.
I ended up creating "The Velvet Coffin", which went through a few incarnations - 
everything from a webseries, to a movie, and now to a web-comic.
It's genre can be described as a "dark horror comedy".
Not exactly a superhero kind of story, but I'm sure we will have some bats show up. ;)
Moving in that particular direction of making it a web-comic,
lead me to creating a Facebook group called "The Bat-Lantern RV" 
where I post anything and everything comic book character related
(yea, usually about Batman), but it's also a place for other members to share
their interests or info on their favorite characters.
Because everyone should have a place to get their geek on.
So I invite you all to join me there, well here!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Monster Monday: Beetlejuice! Beetlejuice! Beetlejuice!

Since today is the brilliant Tim Burton's birthday
and Spectember (more on that soon) is on the way,
I've decided to post about the ghost with the most!

I know you've all seen that fake photo before,
but it gives me an excuse to post this:

Twerking Bobble Butt Figure

That's definitely a creepy curiosity, eh?
You can buy it here. (Yes, really!)

Back to Beetlejuice!
He and I have a lot in common actually,
which you can read about here.
I don't know what else to say,
except Michael Keaton is the man!
The Batman too!

Speaking of which, 
this Saturday will be Baturday here,
in celebration of International Bat Night!

Ghostbusters will be in theaters this weekend too!
You can find out where it's showing here.

I must know which is your favorite 80's ghost flick,
between these two terrific ones, so I created a poll.
Cast your vote!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Monster Monday: Chiller Theater

I first discovered Chiller Theater, thanks to my Mom,
during the show's second week on the air in September 1963
via WIIC (now WPXI) channel 11 in Pittsburgh.
It was a single feature then at 3pm Saturday afternoon.
Bill Cardille was just heard not seen in that first year. 
The show and Mr. Cardille proved to be so popular that it was moved to a double feature,
at 11:15 Saturday night in September 1964, and Bill Cardille became the onscreen host.
I was there every week for Chiller Theater's 20 year run. 
Dubbed "Chilly Billy" early on by the son of channel 11 sportscaster Red Donley,
Bill "Chilly Billy" Cardille became a legend in Pittsburgh TV, 
and would go on to appear in the original Night of The Living Dead (1968).

"Are they slow moving, chief?"

Bill Cardille quickly became my idol, and thanks to Chiller Theater,
I saw over 1,000 first run monster movies.
Chiller was a major part of my horror film education.
Rather than play a character,
Chilly appeared as himself at the beginning and end of the show,
and between the movies, there would be a number of skits
such as Captain Bad and The Pittsburgh Subway Report.

Captain Bad!

Chiller Theater was a party every Saturday night,and the show and the man, Chilly Billy,
are fondly remembered by all of us who tuned in each week.
Bill Cardille, a true class act, now 85, still lives in Pittsburgh.

Bill and daughter Lori Cardille (Sarah in Day of the Dead) in 2007

In October 1976, Chiller moved from the Lab set, 
which had been there since 1965, to the Castle set, 
and a Chiller Family was introduced.

Halloween 1977

Norman the Castle Keeper (Norman Elder) joined the show first,
followed by Terminal Stare (Donna Rae), Stefan the Castle Prankster (Steven Luncinski) 
and Sister Susie (Joyce Sterling). She left the show in early 1978 though,
and was replaced by Georgette the Fudgemaker (Bonnie Barney).
The Chiller Family was dropped in February 1982,
thanks to the poopy headed management at channel 11!

Terminal Stare (Donna Rae) and Joyce Sterling (Sister Susie)

Terminal Stare ( Donna Rae), Stefan (Steve Luncinski), Bill Cardille (Chilly Billy),
Georgette (Bonnie Barney) and Norman (Norman Elder)

Sadly, Norman Elder and Steve Luncinski passed away.
Donna Rae and Joyce Sterling both still live in Pittsburgh.
Bonnie Barney lives in Florida, hopefully still making Fudge!

There was a Sunday night show, too, called Son of Chiller,
which was hosted by Bill Cardille from January to June 1966.

For more on Chiller, visit the official site here.

This post was written by my fangtasic friend Conrad Widener,
who will be sharing his monster memories here every Monday!
So please give him a warm welcome!