Reviews, articles, rants & ramblings on the darker side of the media fringe

Archive for November, 2014

Backmask – Opening Titles – NSFW

Director Marcus Nispel’s slasher Backmask stars Gage Golightly, Michael Ormsby, Stephen Lang, Kelly Blatz, Brett Dier, Nick Nicotera, Nick Nordella and Brittany Curran. The opening title shave been posted online by designersBaird Design.

“During a sex, drugs, and rock-fueled party, six small-town teenagers find an old vintage record and decide to play it backwards in order to listen for any subliminal/satanic messages. Lo and behold, a seemingly malevolent spirit quickly infiltrates the group, wreaking havoc as it moves from one body to another. Eventually, however, it’s revealed that the spirit in question is actually trying to convey a message….and that the real source of horror isn’t particularly paranormal, but rather something (or someone) much closer to home.“

BACKMASK TITLE SEQUENCE from BAIRD DESIGN on Vimeo.


Star Wars: the Force Awakens – In Lego

Well that was quick.. a Lego version of the new Star Wars trailer is already online. Made by Snooperking, here’s what he had to say: “I had nothing to do yesterday so I started once the trailer came out so i built the Falcon, The X-Wing, The speeder bike thingy, a mini tie fighter, tried to build all the sets, and get all my minifigures put together… then just filming took forever especially the special effects… i tried stop motion in front of the green screen and that was hard and by this time it was 3am so like more than 12 hours (it took a 3 hour break somewhere) and then finally gave up and used sewing string for the X-Wing and just kind of moved my camera around the falcon, I wasn’t as happy with the falcon shot but I cant work on it at all today so I had to finish it like 4 hours ago, but I just woke up to go to my grandparents house, and now you know everything about how it was made!”


Star Wars: The Force Awakens


Frank Yablans R.I.P

Frank-Yablans_Movie-BannerFrank Yablans, the president of Paramount Pictures during the fertile early ’70s era that produced films including The Godfather and Chinatown, died of natural causes Thursday at his home in Los Angeles, according to his son, ICM Partners agent Eddy Yablans. He was 79.

Renowned for a hearty sense of humor and temperamental outbursts, Yablans was later COO of MGM/United Artists and co-wrote the screenplay for Mommie Dearest, which he also produced.

Born in Brooklyn, Frank Yablans was brother of producer Irwin Yablans. He got his start in showbiz working for Warner Bros., Disney and Filmways, and became exec VP of sales at Paramount in the late 1960s, where he worked on marketing the hit film Love Story.

The success of the tearjerker led to his being named president of the studio from 1971 to 1975. Yablans was a pioneer in advocating wide openings on films like The Godfather, which opened on 350 screens rather than just in New York and Los Angeles, which was the custom at the time.

During that time, the studio had a run of groundbreaking films including Rosemary’s Baby, Goodbye Columbus, True Grit, Serpico, Paper Moon and Death Wish.

As recounted in former Paramount head of production Robert Evans’ excellent book The Kid Stays in the Picture,  Yablans engaged in an intense fight over deal terms on Chinatown, one of the factors that led to his dismissal as president of Paramount. Evans had negotiated a piece of the gross of that film (while still being head of production) and Yablans wanted to share 50-50. He was replaced by Barry Diller.

Kirk Kerkorian brought him on as vice chairman and chief operating officer of MGM from 1983 to 1985, but despite Yablans’ efforts to reduce costs by combining the historic studio with United Artists, the studio continued to face financial trouble.

He produced numerous films independently, including Congo, The Fury, Silver Streak and The Other Side of Midnight. He also co-wrote North Dallas Forty.

He later founded Promenade Pictures to produce faith-based family entertainment such as the “Epic Stories of the Bible” series and was a producer on the Rome TV series.

He is survived by three children, four grandchildren and his longtime companion Nadia Pandolfo.


P. D. James R.I.P

children_of_men_ver2One of the most prolific and beloved of British crime novelists, P.D. James, passed away today in Oxford, England. Best known for her series of detective novels centering around Scotland Yard Commander/poet Adam Dagliesh, James was 94. Her non-Dagliesh book, Children Of Men, was the basis for Alfonso Cuaron’s 2006 Oscar nominated film of the same name. She also recently was the impetus for Death Comes To Pemberley, a BBC and Masterpiece miniseries based on her novel that imagines Jane Austen’s Pride And Prejudice characters later in life and faced with a murderous scandal. Several of her earlier books were also transferred to the small screen including Death Of An Expert Witness, Unnatural Causes, A Taste For Death, Devices And Desires, A Mind To Murder and Death In Holy Orders.

Phyllis Dorothy James White was born in Oxford in 1920 and began writing in the mid-50s. Her first Dagliesh novel, Cover Her Face, was published in 1962. In 1991, she became Baroness James of Holland Park, but was better known as “the Queen of Crime.” Her publisher, Faber & Faber, today announced her passing with the following statement: “This is a very sad day for us at Faber. It is difficult to express our profound sadness at losing P.D. James, one of the world’s great writers and a Faber author since her first publication in 1962. She was so very remarkable in every aspect of her life, an inspiration and great friend to us all. It is a privilege to publish her extraordinary books. Working with her was always the best of times, full of joy. We will miss her hugely.”


Portal To Hell

Roddy Piper vs. Cthulhu? Co-starring in a short film? It could happen if you support this indiegogo campaign HERE


Jurassic World – Full Trailer

So much for holding the trailer back until it’s cinema bow on Thursday.. due to leaks everywhere Universal has made the Jurassic World trailer available early… and it looks like great fun.


Last Year – 80’s Styled Serial Killer Game

83259642f079c4a3dbdc620f130cd424_largeExperience the nightmare together as you and 5 friends struggle to survive against one player that’s playing as the Killer. Check it out on their Kickstarter page HERE

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/lastyear/last-year-5-vs-1-multiplayer-survival-horror/widget/video.html


Jurassic World – Teaser

The official trailer for Jurassic World premieres next Thursday, but Universal is teasing the Thanksgiving treat with a 15-second preview. Directed by Colin Trevorrow from a screenplay he penned with Derek Connolly, there’s been much kept under wraps about the new film’s plot. But we do know that it involves a theme park, and, dinosaurs (some of them genetically modified)…


Horror Movies – A Parody ‘Starring’ Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn

Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn have made a living as an average comedic duo. Now Fandango Movies wonder how the duo would cope with horror… and the answer is ‘badly’


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Dracula’s Bloodline


Draculas-Bloodline


Mike Nichols – R.I.P.

800px-Still_portrait_Mike_NicholsLegendary film and theater director, writer and producer Mike Nichols has passed away. An Oscar winner for 1967′s seminal The Graduate, he also was nominated for such films as Working Girl, Silkwood and Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf? For his stage work, he amassed 10 Tony Awards including as director for such plays as Barefoot In The Park, The Odd Couple, The Prisoner Of Second Avenue andDeath Of A Salesman; and as producer of Annie and The Real Thing.

“William Goldman said there were two great American film directors—Elia Kazan and Mike Nichols,” said Broadway producer Emanuel Azenberg, who co-produced Tom Stoppard’s The Real Thing with Nichols, who also staged ythe play’s Tony-winning Broadway edition with Glenn Close and Jeremy Irons. “I think that’s true. He was a giant who could convince people to be better than they were.”

Nichols died suddenly late Wednesday night at 83 and his passing was announced on Thursday morning by ABC News President James Goldston. Nichols was married to ABC News Anchor Diane Sawyer. Goldston said this morning, “He was a true visionary, winning the highest honors in the arts for his work as a director, writer, producer and comic and was one of a tiny few to win the EGOT — an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar and a Tony in his lifetime. No one was more passionate about his craft than Mike… Mike and Diane were married for 26 years. He leaves behind three children — Daisy, Max and Jenny — and four wonderful grandchildren… The family will hold a small, private service this week, and a memorial will be held at a later date.”

Nichols’ last film as director was 2007′s Charlie Wilson’s War with Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts and Philip Seymour Hoffman. In 2012, he staged a Tony-winning revival of Death Of A Salesman with Hoffman as Willy Loman. At the time of his death, he was working on an adaptation of Terrence McNally’s Tony-winning play about Maria Callas, Master Class, for HBO.

Nichols was an “extraordinary talent. Consummate gentleman. One of the legends,” HBO CEO Richard Plepler said this morning. “Legend is often overused, but he was a legend and most importantly he was unbelievably decent and had time for everybody, mentored a lot of young talent. That is a vacuum that will not be filled.”
Steven Spielberg weighed in on Nichols’ passing this morning with the following statement to Deadline:

The-Church-in-The-Graduate-600x400“Mike was a friend, a muse, a mentor, one of America’s all time greatest film and stage directors, and one of the most generous people I have ever known. For me, The Graduate was life altering — both as an experience at the movies as well as a master class about how to stage a scene. Mike had a brilliant cinematic eye and uncanny hearing for keeping scenes ironic and real. Actors never gave him less than their personal best — and then Mike would get from them even more. And in a room full of people, Mike was always the center of gravity. This is a seismic loss.”

Nichols was born in Germany in 1931 and moved to the U.S. with his family at age seven. He pursued theater while attending the University of Chicago in the early 1950s. Although he was studying medicine, his true calling was comedy. He met Elaine May in Chicago and the pair formed a legendary comedy duo, winning a Grammy in 1962 for Best Comedy Album.

In 1964, he directed Barefoot In The Park on Broadway, and followed that up with The Odd Couple in 1965. His first film as director was Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf? in 1966 which won five Oscars including Best Actress for Elizabeth Taylor. He followed that up the next year with The Graduate, putting Dustin Hoffman on the map and earning seven Oscar nominations. Nichols won his first Oscar for directing the film. In the early 70’s, he helmed Carnal Knowledge and in the 80’s made a string of now classic movies that includes Silkwood, Heartburn and Working Girl. He produced 1993′s Best Picture nominee The Remains Of The Day, and in 1996 transferred The Birdcage to film with Robin Williams and Nathan Lane starring. His 1998 Primary Colors opened the Cannes Film Festival that year.

MV5BMTM0MzM1NTAyM15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMTkyMTQzNw@@._V1._SX333_SY500_His TV credits include exec producing classic 1970’s drama series Family and directing and exec producing HBO drama Angels In America.

The list of actors with whom Nichols worked on stage and screen is a who’s who of Hollywood, past and present. They include (in no particular order) Julie Christie, Lillian Gish, George C Scott, Richard Dreyfuss, Morgan Freeman, Steve Martin, Robin Williams, Meryl Streep, Dustin Hoffman, Jack Nicholson, Emma Thompson, John Travolta, Kathy Bates, Natalie Portman, Christopher Walken, John Goodman, Kevin Kline, Harrison Ford, Julia Roberts, Ron Silver, Anne Bancroft, Candice Bergen, Gene Hackman, Robert Redford, Tom Hanks, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor.


Gestapo Toht Candle

Raiders-of-the-Lost-Ark_Gestapo-Toht_CandleChristmas will soon be upon us and some will be running around looking for that perfect gift, candles! They’re always popular…

If you’ve seen Raiders of the Lost Ark, there’s probably one scene that really sticks in the memory. No not that gigantic boulder tumbling after Indy, nor when he shoots that sword-twirling nutter in the market square, nor even when he has that uncomfortable staring contest with a cobra…

No, the scene when ruthless Gestapo agent Toht gets his gory comeuppance at the end of the film – you know, when his eyes roll back like a couple of boiled eggs and he lets out a blood-curdling scream as his entire face dribbles off his skull. That bit. Just awesome.

Whether it left you with nightmares for weeks or just had you repeatedly hitting the re-wind button, celebrate one of the greatest deaths in all of cinema history with the Melting Toht Candle. Thankfully this detailed replica won’t melt quite as fast so you can really savour the moment.

Just light the wick to set the glorious melting process in motion – there’s no need to seek out the Ark of the Covenant and unceremoniously release its supernatural powers. Order it HERE


Batman – Francesco Francavilla

Jock-Francavilla-Black-MirrorBatman_Vampires_Red-Rain_Francavilla


The Jurassic World – Viral Site

Jurassic-WorldThe Jurassic World viral site is masraniglobal.com. The site is technically for a company called Masrani Global, which, in the film, is the construction company which helped to build and create Jurassic World. The site has a ton of images, some of which feature actors Irrfan Khan and B.D. Wong, as well as some history of the island and park which opened (according to the site) in June 2005. You can read quotes from the site below or click to see it HERE.

Soon after the acquisition of InGen in 1998, Simon Masrani looked to work at a plan that seemed impossible given the circumstances of the years preceeding – the control and re-invention of a new theme park on Isla Nublar. Experts from the Masrani company were collected together, along with Dr. Henry Wu from the InGen company, to plan for the greatest theme park and attractions ever constructed in humankind’s history.

Simon Masrani used subsidaries Axis Boulder Engineering and Timack Construction to work on the preparation and planning prior to construction on the island. Construction workers were protected from native wildlife by InGen security over the course of the three years from 2002 until completion in 2004. With over $1.2 billion alone spent in concrete and building materials, this project was never underestimated.

The most incredible thing about the project for me was the fact that we were able to construct so far off the mainland, while maintaining all deadlines”, explains Jurassic World Project Manager Mr. Eli Jacobs. “The logistics and the planning were just incredible. Security teams, perimeter fencing, scientists, quarantine zones … it was quite the atmosphere.”

Simon Masrani was taking no chance.

Simon adds, “The sense of security proved vital in the establishment of Jurassic World. The media were having a frenzy at the time, conservation groups around the globe were looking and waiting for any incident to tarnish our reputation to try and take Isla Nublar away from us. We had to set a feeling of safety, for when the time came for opening in 2005, we had to ensure people were willing to come.

And come they did … Jurassic World officially opened in June 2005 to an incredible 98,120 visitors in its first month of operation.


The Sandman – By Paul Berry

Thanks to Deane Taylor’s comment on yesterday’s post, here is the short stop-motion film, The Sandman, directed and animated by Paul Berry.

A chilling interpretation of an old European folktale. This Oscar-nominated short film was conceived, designed and produced by Colin Batty, Paul Berry and Ian Mackinnon. It has won awards at Festivals in Hiroshima, Annecy, Stuttgart, Ottawa and Espinho.


Support Dario Argento’s The Sandman

Support The Maestro Dario Argento and his creative freedom as he crafts his most HORRIFIC FILM EVER! Check it out on indiegogo HERE

Going back to the dark, original German legend: the REAL Sandman was someone who stole the eyes of any children that wouldn’t just close them and go to sleep… he’d then go feed them to his hungry children on the moon.

Nathan, a young  student in the city who struggles to forget his childhood trauma at the hands of the serial killer dubbed “The Sandman”: a masked killer who murders his victims with a lethally jagged melon spoon (yes, you read that right!), and claims their eyes as trophies. Nathan killed The Sandman years ago, on Christmas Eve, after he witnessed the murder of his mother, and the nightmare seems to be buried in the past … until he sees the beautiful woman who lives in the apartment across the way dying at the hands of that very same masked killer. This brutal murder plunges Nathan into an odyssey into the night country of his past, his dreams…and the buried secrets of… you guessed it!… The Sandman, who’s on the hunt again.


Wyrmwood – IFC Midnight

Great news for Australian film, IFC Midnight has acquired U.S. rights to Australian zombie horror Wymwood. Filmed as a DIY project over a period of four years, the film was directed by Kiah Roache-Turner with a screenplay from Roache-Turner and his brother Tristan Roache-Turner.

The story involves a mechanic who struggles to rescue his kidnapped sister on the eve of a zombie apocalypse. Jay Gallagher, Bianca Bradey and Leon Burchill star.

Wyrmwood premiered at Fantastic Fest and continued a festival career in Toronto After Dark and at the Busan festival in South Korea. The film was produced by Tristan Roache-Turner and executive produced by Jamie Hilton and Josh Pomeranz.


Demon House – By Lee Daniels

director_lee_danielsIn the kind of move not generally seen, ‘serious’ director Lee Daniels is taking a turn toward the horror genre. The helmer who last directed Lee Daniels’ The Butler, The Paperboy and Precious will direct the fact-based film currently titled Demon House. The film is based on Latoya Ammons and her family, whose life rights made this film possible. They claim to have been victims of a demonic possession that has spanned over two years and counting. Ammons and her family have received international media attention for their accounts, which have been witnessed and documented by the Department of Child Services, the Gary (IN) Police Department and hospital staff.

The experience began with unusual occurrences in her home over two years ago, including swarms of flies around her porch in the winter and unexplainable creaking sounds in her basement. The events progressed to possessive incidents including her oldest daughter unconsciously levitating above her bed, medical staff witnessing her middle son gliding backward on the floor, wall and ceiling. According to Relativity, the DCS case manager witnessed her youngest son growling with his teeth showing and eyes rolled back, locking his hands around his older brother’s throat with no recollection of the incident. Initial psychological exams and exorcism attempts failed to provide explanation or solution for the bizarre events.


The Boneyard to Release a New Short Film Every Wednesday

Cinema Slasher

Sideshow Pictures and Harrington Talents have collaborated on The Boneyard – a new online streaming site that is set to introduce new horror short films for free.

Every Wednesday, a new short will premiere on The Boneyard.

Short films from Sideshow Pictures like Night of the Pumpkin, The House That Cried Blood, and Children of the Witch are available for streaming, as are new shorts Relik and #Selfie. Today sees the release of Home Sweet Home, a new short film from Frank Sabatella (Blood Night: The Legend of Mary Hatchet).

To visit The Boneyard, click on the image below.

The Boneyard

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South of Hell

South-of-HellThe Eli Roth and Jason Blum horror series, South of Hell has added a few more fan favorites to the guest director roster: Ti West (House Of The Devil, The Sacrament), Rachel Talalay (Doctor Who, Tank Girl), Jennifer Lynch (The Walking Dead, Teen Wolf) and Jeremiah Chechik (Helix, Reigh) have been tapped to direct individual episodes of WE tv’s original scripted thriller South Of Hell. 

Set in South Carolina, South Of Hell focuses on Maria Abascal (Mena Suvari), a stunning demon-hunter-for-hire whose power stems from within. Like those she hunts, Maria is divided within herself, struggling with her own demon, Abigail, who resides inside of her, feeding on the evil Maria exorcises from others. Zachary Booth and Bill Irwin also star. The show has an eight-episode straight-to-series order for a 2015 premiere. South Of Hell is produced by Sonar Entertainment and Blumhouse Television


Ash Vs. Evil Dead

the-evil-dead-original-1981-posterThe Evil Dead movie franchise has officially crossed over to television with a 10-episode straight-to-series order from Starz for a 2015 premiere. Titled Ash Vs. Evil Dead, the followup to the classic film franchise reteams the original filmmakers, director Sam Raimi, longtime producing partner Rob Tapert and star Bruce Campbell
who will serve as executive producers. Campbell will be reprising his role as Ash, the stock boy, aging lothario and chainsaw-handed monster hunter who has spent the last 30 years avoiding responsibility, maturity and the terrors of the Evil Dead. When a Deadite plague threatens to destroy all of mankind, Ash is finally forced to face his demons –personal and literal. Destiny, it turns out, has no plans to release the unlikely hero from its “Evil” grip.

Raimi will direct the first episode of Ash Vs. Evil Dead, which he co-wrote with his brother Ivan Raimi (Darkman) and Tom Spezialy (Chuck). “Evil Dead has always been a blast,” Raimi said. “Bruce, Rob, and I are thrilled to have the opportunity to tell the next chapter in Ash’s lame, but heroic saga. With his chainsaw arm and his ‘boomstick,’ Ash is back to kick some monster butt. And brother, this time there’s a truckload of it.”

Ash Vs. Evil Dead also reunites Sam Raimi and Tapert with Starz where they executive produced the pay cable network’s first scripted hit, drama Spartacus. Ivan Raimi will co-executive produce the series, and Aaron Lam (Spartacus) will serve as producer.

Fans have been buzzing about an Evil Dead series since Sam Raimi announced at Comic-Con — where he and Campbell are hugely popular — that he was working on it. “I’m really excited to bring this series to the Evil Dead fans worldwide – it’s going to be everything they have been clamoring for: serious deadite ass-kicking and plenty of outrageous humor,” said Campbell.

The original Evil Dead film followed Ash and his friends who travel to a cabin in the woods, where they unknowingly release demons intent on possessing the living. It was a hit, spawning a franchise that included two sequels directed by Raimi, produced by Talpert and starring Campbell, as well as video games and comic books. There was also a recent feature reboot produced by Raimi and Talpert and directed by Fede Alvarez.


Summer Camp – The Slasher Game

You want Friday the 13th: The Videogame?, well Slasher Vol. 1: Summer Camp is basically that as it follows a gaggle of horny teen counselors who find themselves being hunted by some woods-dwelling psychopath, that would be you!

If you have the nagging feeling you’ve heard of this game before, you’re probably thinking about Splatter Camp, the other teen murder simulator from Babysitter Bloodbath (formerly Halloween) developer Pig Farmer Games. This isn’t Splatter Camp, this is Summer Camp.


Birdman Returns – Official Trailer

1992 was the year that Michael Keaton wore the Dark Knight’s mask for a second time in Batman Returns, but coincidentally it was also the year that his on-screen alter ego Riggan Thomson donned the beak for Birdman Returns. In an AwardLine interview, Keaton says that when he discussed the script for Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) with director Alejandro G. Inarritu, “I remember us spending no time about the material being reflective about me personally. We jumped immediately into other discussions. I’m sure at some point we said, we gotta figure this out….We discussed what was happening to artists, to human beings, a person’s ego. This is more about Alejandro than it is about me, Ed Norton or Emma Stone…It’s about the effects on an artist, how they question things. Alejandro was brave with the material; he’s not coy and comes out says why he was struggling.”