Fifteen years ago a horrific monstrosity was loosed on an unsuspecting public. It was huge and ghastly and made you want to avert your eyes.
And it starred Matthew Broderick.
Yes, I am referring to the 1998 “American” remake of Godzilla, which outraged fans nicknamed G.I.N.O., an acronym for “Godzilla in Name Only,” to ensure it would never be confused with the original source material.
To be fair, there were two good things about the film. One, even with an estimated budget of $130M it did at least break even in the US, pulling in $136M. Second, TriStar Pictures was able to keep all the velociraptor special effects guys employed (they had recently been laid off following the release of Jurassic Park: Lost World in 1997).
However what happened this week may finally eradicate the revulsion from our collective memories.
As my co-worker Ryan Harvey announced on Tuesday (by jumping up and roaring “out loud with him at the top of my lungs”… while at work), Legendary and Warner Brothers released the trailer for their 2014 Godzilla reboot and it looks pretty epic. Considering how long it took me to actually access it, there is clearly a whole lot of interest in seeing what will happen with the iconic monster this time around.
Monsters‘ special effects guru, Gareth Edwards writes the story and directs an eclectic cast including Elizabeth Olsen (Kill Your Darlings), Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad), Aaron Johnson (Kick-Ass) and Juliette Binoche (The English Patient).
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You’re going to love this…
Autoway Loop, one of Japan’s largest wholesalers of tires, has recently employed the image of Kuchisake-onna (the “Slit-Mouthed Woman”) as its new “it” girl.
According to Japanese urban legend, Kuchisake-onna is a woman who is mutilated by a jealous husband and returns as a malicious spirit. When rumors of alleged sightings began in 1979 around Nagasaki, it spread throughout Japan and caused panic in many towns. There are even reports of schools allowing children to go home only in groups escorted by teachers for safety, and of police increasing their patrols.
Flash forward to 2013, to an ad agency somewhere in Japan who are tasked with making snow tires interesting.
The results are awesome (especially the guy with the high-pitched scream toward the end), though I’m not sure afterwards I’d remember someone is trying to get me to buy tires.
Take that, Michelin Tire marshmallow man…
Post a comment or drop a line to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The last time we heard anything about a possible film version of one of my very favorite books, Erik Larson‘s The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic and Madness at the Fair That Changed America, Leonardo DiCaprio‘s company had just optioned it and attached the actor to the project. Way back then DiCaprio had yet to shoot either J. Edgar or The Great Gatsby, both of which have already come and gone.
And that’s what the industry refers to as “development hell.”
However, recently it was confirmed that DiCaprio was, and still is, set to play H.H. Holmes, the serial killer who haunted the creation of the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago. We still haven’t heard all that much about the film, but Warner Bros. says they are still working to make it a reality, and have hired Graham Moore to script.
It might help to move things along that fellow Chicago native Moore is a huge fan of the book, and has been for some time. As he told Deadline Hollywood,
[I've been] obsessed with Devil in the White City for a decade. My high school was 50 yards away from where the Chicago World’s Fair was held, and I played soccer on a field near where Holmes murdered about 200 people. It was a truly horrible crime, but it’s a very Chicago story. Though I moved to LA, I think of myself as fundamentally Mid-Western, and in a weird way, this is a dark and twisted tribute to my hometown.
Nicely put Mr. Moore, I couldn’t agree more.
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It is with a heavy sigh that the Goth Chick News team bids farewell to another “season” of Halloween fun but not before attending one last hurrah.
Days of the Dead is a four-city, tour de force of all things horror that rolled through Chicago last weekend. In addition to a copious list of movie celebrities, this year’s event boasted the largest number of industry vendors ever to attend the Midwest show; including special effects artists, set dressers, authors and indy film makers.
Bigger events come through Chicago, but Days of the Dead has the monopoly on panache.
Let’s wade in shall we?
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This time next year, fellow Chicagoan Gillian Flynn is going to have one heck of a fall season with two of her best-selling novels headed for the big screen.
David Fincher’s high-profile thriller Gone Girl, starring Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike, releases October 3, 2014 but this week it was announced that Flynn’s earlier cult thriller Dark Places is nearly in the can, with Frenchman Gilles Paquet-Brenner behind the camera and Charlize Theron in front of it.
Dark Places is set to hit theaters September 1, 2014.
Dark Places was published in 2009 and at the time was listed on the New York Times Best Seller List for hardcover fiction for two consecutive weeks. The book was also shortlisted for the Crime Writers’ Association Ian Fleming Steel Dagger Award and won the Dark Scribe Magazine Black Quill Award for Dark Genre Novel of the Year.
Flynn’s more recent novel, Gone Girl, spent eight weeks at No. 1 on the hardcover fiction best-seller list of The New York Times, and has sold more than two million copies in print and digital formats.
In addition to Oscar-winner actress Charlize Theron, Dark Places will also star Nicholas Hoult (Warm Bodies), Chloë Grace Moretz (Carrie), Corey Stoll (House of Cards) and Emmy Award nominated actresses Christina Hendricks (Mad Men) and Drea de Matteo (Sons of Anarchy).
The plot sees the seven year-old Libby Day witness the murder of her family, seemingly the work of a Satanic cult, and testify against her own brother (Stoll) as the murderer.
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Anyone who thinks the whole zombie thing is at risk for falling out of pop-culture-vogue is underestimating the undead super powers of Max Brooks.
The World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War writer continues his current reign as king of the reanimated by reportedly signing his latest comic Extinction Parade to a TV deal, offering up what may be the first real, small-screen competition to The Walking Dead.
Bleeding Cool reports Brooks is in talks with “one of the most successful production companies in Hollywood,” though no one is even hinting at who that could be yet. But to really get our attention, Extinction Parade is going to need the no-holds-barred approach of someone like HBO rather than a network treatment.
NBC is resurrecting the made-for-CBS undead series Babylon Fields and The Sundance Channel is currently airing The Returned, both of which take a less violent look at zombies. But now with vampires in the mix, Brooks’s story definitely needs the creative freedom to back up the tanker of fake blood.
As explained in Extinction Parade’s first issue:
As humans wage their loosing fight versus the hoards of the subdead, a frightening realization sets in with the secretive Vampire race: our food is dying off. This is the story of Vampires’ decent into all-out war with the mindless hungry hordes of the zombie outbreak as humanity tries to survive them all. Three species in mortal conflict. This is how a species dies.
Oh yes please.
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From all of us in the underground offices of Black Gate, wishing you a wonderful “holiday” season and thank you for continuing to follow us into the dark.
And now for your reading enjoyment, what would Halloween be without a little Edgar…?
Thy soul shall find itself alone
‘Mid dark thoughts of the grey tomb-stone;
Not one, of all the crowd, to pry
Into thine hour of secrecy.
Be silent in that solitude,
Which is not loneliness — for then
The spirits of the dead, who stood
In life before thee, are again
In death around thee, and their will
Shall overshadow thee; be still.
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I honestly never thought I would ever again gush about a Stephen King novel, but here I am.
You see, I’ve been disillusioned for some time – as in ever since The Stand. And before I start seeing dozens of posts about how great the Dark Tower series is, or Under the Dome for that matter, to me King is and always will be the teller of horror tales. And frankly, he hasn’t really scared me since IT.
Or maybe Pet Cemetery.
Honestly, I felt King had lost his horror mojo – or had it forcibly extracted during the conception of his son Joe Hill, who tears up the NYC Best Seller list every time he puts pen to paper.
But back in September 2011, as King was receiving an award at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, he talked a little bit about the latest novel he was working on, Doctor Sleep – a sequel to his 1977 blockbuster hit The Shining.
This is an idea that I’ve had for some time. I wrote a novel in the ’70s called The Shining… I always wondered what happened to that kid, Danny Torrance, when he grew up… and this story started to form. The book isn’t finished yet, it’s called Doctor Sleep. This kinda goes back to: what’s the worst thing you can think of? I knew that there were bad people in this story that were like vampires, only that what they sucked out was not blood, but psychic energy from special people like Danny Torrance. And I came to realize that these people were called The Tribe and that they move around a lot.
I was skeptical then and remained so all the way up until September 24th, when my copy of Doctor Sleep finally arrived.
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Crowdsourcing, microcrediting, and clickworking have all become buzz words in mainstream corporate America in recent years, but I honestly did not imagine I would use “kickstart” and “live horror show” in the same sentence.
And yet here we are, in a place even Dr. Frankenstein couldn’t have anticipated.
After seventeen studio albums, including three horror movie scores and a motion picture of their own, Gothic Halloween Horror music composers and my personal fan girl crushes, Midnight Syndicate have launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund a multimedia concert extravaganza.
And what is a “Kickstarter campaign” you ask?
As has been mentioned here once or twice, Kickstarter is the world’s largest crowdfunding platform. The company’s mission is to help bring creative projects to life and since its launch, nearly 5 million people have funded more than 50,000 creative projects such as films, music, stage shows, comics, journalism, and video games.
People who back Kickstarter projects are offered tangible rewards and one-of-kind experiences in exchange for their pledges and Midnight Syndicate is offering some serious bootie in exchange for your bucks (want to be the show’s Executive Producer for instance?)
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Have you ever become a fan of something in its earliest days and watched as it got better and better over time, until you were congratulating yourself at seeing the early greatness before everyone else caught on?
Or maybe that’s just me.
Usually it’s authors or film makers I have the pleasure of meeting on their freshman outings, and you can just tell that if you keep an eye on some them, things are going to get even more amazing as they further hone their craft.
In this particular case, it’s a hybrid of all the pop culture creativity that has been so much fun to follow.
Creating a haunted attraction from the ground up takes all the effort you can imagine — doubled. There’s the space, the permits, the theme, the detailed sets – costumes, makeup, actors, and promotion. Basically, all the components (and expense) of a stage production or an indy film with the additional elements of crowd control and liability insurance.
Fear City just kicked off its third season with a “Bloody Red Carpet” event on October 4th and its evolution has been a scream to watch.
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