Norman Reedus at Wizard World’s Fan Fest
If you’re the kind of person who gets misty-eyed with nostalgia when you hear sitcom titles like Growing Pains, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and Married With Children, then Wizard World’s Fan Fest which took place March 7-8 in Chicago would have been just the place for you.
And if you’re considering possible explanations for how the heck I ended up there (dragging BG photog Chris Z along for fun), the answer is no – I did not have a fever or a head injury.
There is a darn good explanation actually.
Fan Fest came to be when Bruce Campbell, the cult-favorite TV and movie actor, had to cancel his appearance at the Bruce Campbell Horror Fest because of a television commitment. The horror fest was scheduled to take place that weekend and Goth Chick News had been invited to attend.
“We knew we couldn’t continue to hold the Bruce Campbell Horror Fest without Bruce Campbell!” said Jerry Milani of Wizard Entertainment. “But it also seemed a shame to let the weekend go to waste, since we already had the date and the venue.”
And so, the idea of Fan Fest was born. Organizers quickly secured a lineup of actors along with celebrities from the comic-book and pro-wrestling worlds. (The Bruce Campbell event has been rescheduled to take place in August with Wizard World’s Chicago Comic Con.)
Read More »
And so this happened last week…
John O (the big cheese): People probably imagined you lot (Photog Chris Z and I presumably – GC) are just hunkered down there in the subterranean offices of Black Gate sequestered with a blender, several bottles of adult beverages and the Roku horror channels.
John O: So – that’s not the image we want to portray here at Black Gate.
Me: We have an image…?
John O: OF COURSE WE HAVE AN IMAGE! Why can’t you be more like Scott Taylor?
Me: Who? Oh…you mean Art. Right. Wait, what was that first thing again?
John O: [insert unpublishable adult language] Would you please just go be visible somewhere? Be a reporter – get out in the field and report. That’s what Scott Taylor does. He reports… on art… for Black Gate.
Me: The ice machine is broken again.
John O: ARG! [insert more adult language and stomping up the stairs]
What John O doesn’t know but what — and I’m just guessing here — he wants to know, is the following.
Read More »
For all of you who daydreamed about what could have been, as far as the Alien franchise goes, today I bring you official glad tidings.
But first I must take you back to those dark days in 1992, and again in 1997 (forgetting the whole Aliens vs. Predators thing for a moment) when, following the beleaguered Ellen Ripley’s escape from LV-426 and its Xenomorph inhabitants, she found nothing but continued misery in the form of Alien 3 and Alien: Resurrection respectively.
Ripley repeatedly saved mankind from not only corporate tyranny, but from having our collective intestine ripped out as human incubators. But did she ever get a moment’s peace or happiness. Or for that matter, did the fans?
That would be a great big “no way.”
However, hope now springs eternal.
Last week Sigourney Weaver raised a collective cheer when she publicly announced the Alien franchise was now in the capable hands of District 9 director Neill Blomkamp; then doubled our joy by saying she’s looking forward to returning to her signature role of Ellen Ripley in a new installment of the science-fiction series.
Read More »
Zombies continue their relentless, feet-shuffling domination of all things pop culture – proof (we continue to hope) that sparkly, angsty, Seattle vampires with sappy theme songs are staked for good.
One of many indications that our infectious love of the undead shows no signs of a cure is the proliferation of Walker Stalker Con, a convention spawned by and primarily dedicated to, AMC’s hit TV show The Walking Dead.
What started in Atlanta, GA (near where the show films) as a small fan convention organized by fanboy pod-casters James Frazier and Eric Nordhoff, then spread to Chicago in 2014 and has now grown to a seven-city tour.
Walker Stalker Con is more than a standard fan convention. In the two Chicago events we have attended, Frazier and Nordhoff have managed to secure a sizable chunk of the cumulative cast of the show’s five seasons and space for “the talent” accounts for more than half of the convention floor.
In addition, the organizers strive to ensure all guests “come away feeling like they’ve had an amazing experience and became part of a greater community of zombie lovers!”
Is this great or what?
Read More »
Poltergeist then and now
Poltergeist might have been the first time I was ever truly scared by a movie.
Of course I grew up on a solid diet of Universal Studios movie monsters along with an array of black and white horrors from Hammer shown on late-night TV. But in all of those, no matter how high the creep factor, it was fairly clear that these stories depicted reel reality, not real reality.
But then along came little Carol Anne Freeling and her off-air television.
Suddenly, all “real” scary stuff was up there on the screen; the craggy dead tree knocking against your bedroom window, lightning storms looming ever closer, the half-open closet door…
And the clown… under the bed.
I mean come on, Vincent Price as The Fly was enough to make you watch at least part of it through splayed fingers, but deep down you knew a fly with a human head was pretty darn unlikely.
But an evil clown under your bed? Entirely plausible.
To this day, even as low-tech as it now appears, Poltergeist still gives me a shudder. It knew what scared us alright.
So it is with some trepidation that I remind you that a reboot of Tobe Hopper’s original fright fest is due to hit theaters on July 24th, in 3D no less.
Read More »
Back at the 2013 Haunted Attractions Show we met the very talented and creative folks at AtmosFearFX Digital Decorations. These are the people responsible for the digital loops of various horror scenes which can be projected on any surface with stupendously unnerving results.
At this year’s Goth Chick News Zombie Apocalypse Party, Black Gate photog Chris Z., who does double duty as the resident technology guru (necessary due to John O’s regular “blue screens of death”), used AtmosFearFX’s Zombie Invasion loop to create a Hollywood-worthy effect.
Covering a large window with rear projection cloth, he projected from the outside of the room. The result was life-sized zombies beating against the window leaving bloody hand prints before dragging themselves out of view.
The loop repeated with a timed frequency and with enough slight differences to be nothing short of perfect.
You know it’s a good effect when a guest asks where you hired the “people dressed as zombies hanging around out on the terrace and banging on the window.”
And just like a gift that keeps on giving, there’s no end of fun to be had once you make the nominal investment in a project (available on eBay) and the fabric which is available at most stores selling home theater equipment at around $10 a square foot.
Read More »
We first introduced you to Dirk Manning way back in 2011, courtesy of his nationwide tour promoting Nightmare World, his horror comic series.
As someone who spent a significant amount of my childhood reading contraband horror stories by flashlight under the covers, Manning’s work struck a chord with his vintage-look illustrations and old-school storylines.
So it’s no surprise that his work holds a place of honor on the bookshelves in the underground offices of Goth Chick News. Nor is it probably a shocker that due to his genre of choice (not to mention the black top hat), that he’s become a personal favorite as well.
When I learned about Manning’s latest installment of his paranormal Mr. Rhee series, I had to ask him to spill some double-secret details just for you. And being my favorite goth guy, horror-comic crush, he graciously complied.
Let’s wade in shall we?
Read More »
Goth Chick News fav, director Eli Roth, has been a very busy gent lately. And even if he didn’t look like that, we still wouldn’t be able to tear our eyes away from his latest lineup of projects.
First off, there the third and final season of the supernatural, hottie-monster-ridden joy ride that is Roth’s Netflix series Hemlock Grove. If you haven’t caught up with this yet, there is still time to binge watch Famke Janssen, Bill Skarsgard and Landon Liboiron tear through a small, New England town that is home to everything from vampires and werewolves to witches and mad doctors – and still have time to pine away that the next ten episodes will be the last.
Says the man himself:
We are so grateful to the fans of Hemlock Grove who have championed the series so intensely over two seasons. We are looking forward to taking the last and final season into some dark and unexpected places, and to giving viewers the killer finale.
Oh Eli, you know just what to say to a girl. But when exactly?
Season 1 premiered in April and season two showed up in July. A January 1st post on the HG Twitter feed said only that season three was “so close you could almost feel it” which means who-knows-what, but could indicate another full season landing in the early spring.
Read More »
It’s been nearly a year since we wrote about M. Night Shyamalan leaking a few cryptic Tweets about his double-secret “micro-budget” film called Sundowning – or at least that was what it was titled on the clapboards.
To clarify, “micro-budget” is the latest, sexier term Hollywood has assigned to “indy” films, or rather films made outside of the studio system and without their financial backing. Then all you have to do it take a quick look back at M. Night’s last few outings to know that making a film inside the studio system is probably not a viable option for him at the moment (see After Earth and The Last Airbender: though personally I had a ton of fun with Devil).
Back in February, 2013 M. Night was sequestered somewhere in snowy Pennsylvania with a paltry crew of ten, cast included. Considering the setting, the title and the fact that some fairly significant horror movies have been filmed on shoestring budgets, we here at Goth Chick News along with our favorite fan boys had our money on a vampire movie.
I mean even a good set of fangs are fairly reasonable cost-wise, and everyone in New England is pasty this time of year anyway…
Read More »
It’s been over a year since we first got a peek at an upcoming zombie-killing, gaming extravaganza entitled Dying Light. Back in August, 2013, Dying Light’s creators Techland hinted that the game would be released in all formats somewhere around May, 2014.
Several months (and delays) later, we finally have a firm date of January 27, 2015 and a lot has changed – not the least of which appears to be the angle of the storyline, though officially the delays were due to the extreme complexity of development.
A year ago we were told this:
Dying Light is a first-person, action survival horror game set in a vast and dangerous open world. During the day, players traverse an expansive urban environment overrun by a vicious outbreak, scavenging the world for supplies and crafting weapons to defend against the growing infected population. At night, the hunter becomes the hunted, as the infected become aggressive and more dangerous. Most frightening are the predators which only appear after sundown. Players must use everything in their power to survive until the morning’s first light.
Read More »