Pictures from Terror Con 2014

 

By Jason Harris

Fred Williamson (From Dusk Till Dawn)

Fred Williamson (From Dusk Till Dawn)

2014-06-07 10.21.18

Erin Murphy of Bewitched.

Erin Murphy (Bewitched)

2014-06-07 12.18.52

Dee Wallace of E.T., Cujo, and Critters.

Dee Wallace of E.T., Cujo, and Critters.

An alligator on the loose at Terror Con.

An alligator on the loose at Terror Con.

2014-06-08 09.56.25

Lisa Loring a.k.a Wednesday Addams on The Addams Family.

Lisa Loring a.k.a Wednesday Addams on The Addams Family.

Musician Richie Scarlett and author Rob Watts.

Musician Richie Scarlett and author Rob Watts.

2014-06-08 16.34.59

Nicholas Brendon ( Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Criminal Minds)

Nicholas Brendon ( Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Criminal Minds)

Author Stacey Longo with Captain Jack Sparrow.

Author Stacey Longo with Captain Jack Sparrow.

 

Martin Wright a.k.a WWE's The Boogeyman.

Martin Wright a.k.a WWE’s The Boogeyman.

The Boogeyman

The Boogeyman

Jigsaw

Jigsaw

 

2014-06-07 13.55.38

Jason Vorhees

Jason Voorhees

Jason Voorhees without the hockey mask.

Jason Voorhees without the hockey mask.

There will be a couple more entries with pictures from Terror Con coming on Monday and Tuesday.

TerrorCon, a New Convention for Horror Fans

 

By Jason Harris

 

New England is getting its second horror convention, TerrorCon, with the first one being Rock & Shock, which will be holding its eleventh convention this October. TerrorCon, which takes place in Rhode Island in June, isn’t the only new horror convention debuting in New England this year. Connecticut Horrorfest debuts in August.

TerrorCon is the brainchild of Steven Perry, director of operations for Altered Reality, who has brought conventions to fans of comics, movies, and pop culture. These conventions are Southcoast Toy and Comic Show and Rhode Island Comic Con. Perry had been thinking of his newest one, TerrorCon, for about a year, he said.

Rhode Island didn’t have a big horror type show, Perry said. “We wanted to bring that to the people of Rhode Island.”

Perry thinks the organizers of Rock & Shock do a great job so he decided to have his new convention take place in June so as not to interfere with Rock & Shock. He didn’t want to step on anyones toes, he said.

“Everyone’s happy and friends remain friends. It keeps everyone friendly with everyone. We believe that everyone should work together. There’s no need for shows to stumble.”

Perry isn’t sticking to only New England to organize shows. His company is in the process of organizing shows for New Jersey and Colorado, which should be starting up in 2015, he said. He can’t say what those shows will be since they are not fully developed, which is the reason he hasn’t announced them yet.

“Right now, they will both me similar to Rhode Island Comic Con.”

If you couldn’t guess from the different line-ups for Perry’s shows, they always try to do a theme, he said. They plan their guests around whatever theme they decide to do. Whatever guests they choose and book for the event, they are sure to tell the fans about who is coming. They have lists of guests for the next two years, he said.

“We like to keep the fans enticed and let them know what’s going on all the time. Something new pops up with us, we put it up for everybody to know,” Perry said about constantly updating the convention websites.

Perry was asked last November why they were announcing guests for this year’s convention when the 2013 one just ended. He responded with, “Why keep it a secret? We want them to know and get excited about it. We want the fans to make plans to come out to the show.”

Here is just some of the guests coming to TerrorCon: David Giuntoli (Grimm), Linda Blair (The Exorcist), Michael Biehn (The Terminator, Planet Terror), Dee Snider (Twisted Sister, The Celebrity Apprentice), Lita Ford, Cherie Currie, Michael Jai-Whie (Spawn, Arrow, Fast and the Furious 7, The Dark Knight), Nicholas Brendon (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Criminal Minds), Josh Stewart (Grimm, Criminal Minds, The Dark Knight Rises), Kane Hodder (Friday the 13th: Part 7, 8 and 10, Hatchet), Lew Temple (The Walking Dead) and Dee Wallace (ET, The Howling).

Perry started organizing conventions with the Southcoast Toy and Comic Show, which was held in a VFW hall, seven years ago. That first show had about 300 people in attendance, he said. It’s a far cry from the 22,000 people who attended the first Rhode Island Comic Con when they thought the attendance would be around 10,000 and the 30,000 people they had for the second Rhode Island Comic Con. He’s expecting between 10,000 and 15,000 people to attend TerrorCon, which is a safe number in the mind of Perry.

“The horror market is a little more of a niche market so we don’t expect a large audience,” Perry said.

His vision for Southcoast was t bring a reasonable size show that would be community based, Perry said. He wanted something for the fans in that area to be able to look forward to every season or twice a year. Another thing he wanted to do was bring in celebrities that people don’t always have a chance to meet, he said.

Perry said that TerrorCon will be the same size of the original Rhode Island Comic Con plus an extra ballroom.

“TerrorCon will not just be horror. It will be horror themed, paranormal, all mixed together.”

TerrorCon takes place June 7 and 8 at the Rhode Island Convention Center in Providence, RI.

Visiting ‘Jurassic Park’ in 3D

Visiting Jurassic Park in 3D

by Jason Harris

Jurassic ParkIt has been 20 years since Steven Spielberg brought Jurassic Park to audiences. It’s a film that holds up well, which isn’t surprising since a lot of Spielberg’s movies do. E.T. and Jaws are two movies that come to mind.

This Friday a new Jurassic Park is arriving in theaters. This one is in 3D though. It’s perfect timing for Universal Studios since they are working on a fourth one, which should come out in 2014.

If you haven’t seen this movie, which is based on the Michael Crichton novel of the same name, here’s a brief synopsis. John Hammond (Richard Attenborough), the CEO of InGen, created a park populated by dinosaurs. There’s an accident at his Jurassic Park, which causes his investors to insist on an inspection by experts Dr. Alan Grant (Sam Neill) and Dr. Ellie Sattler (Laura Dern), who are joined by “rock star” Dr. Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum). All hell breaks loose because of corporate espionage and everyone is trying to survive when the dinosaurs get loose throughout the park.

I have never been a fan of 3D movies since my eyesight is bad and the 3D effect never seems to work for me. It also could have been the 3D glasses too. When I saw the movie at an IMAX theater during a screening the other night, they had glasses that were flush against my face. These worked quite well. A few times during the movie, I actually thought there was something in front of me. One time it was only a tree branch in the movie. The 3D effect also brings out things in the movie’s background, which may have been over looked in previous viewings. It also makes you feel like what’s happening is only a few feet in front of you.

It’s great seeing this movie on the silver screen. And it’s even better seeing it in 3D.

The Mirroring of Life and Fiction

This entry originally appeared on NEHW member Inanna Arthen’s blog.

Hey, how did that fiction get in my real life?

by Inanna Arthen

Peter Coyote (picture courtesy of texasgoldmovie.com)

There has always been a consistent pattern in my life whereby my fiction and my actual experiences echo and mirror each other in the weirdest ways.The first time I encountered actor Peter Coyote was in Steven Spielberg’s E.T., in which he played the mysterious scientist tracking the little alien. I’d never heard of Mr. Coyote before. But I confess: it was a case of crush at first sight. I’m not prone to fannish excesses–I won’t even collect autographs–so I didn’t look up Mr. Coyote’s biography or read gossip magazines or anything like that. Probably almost any other fan of his knew a lot more about his background than I did. But I loved him in E.T.,and I watched for him in other things. Many years ago, I went to a Red Cross blood drive to donate blood. I can no longer pinpoint exactly when this was, except that I’m fairly sure it was between 1982 and 1989, and I think the blood drive was in Acton, Massachusetts, where I lived in the 80s. It wouldn’t have been far from there, anyway. I had taken some film magazines with me to read – Premiere, I think. This was during my efforts to break into film acting locally. I even read Variety.After I finished with the donation and was resting, the way the Red Cross always makes you do so you won’t just jump up, barf and pass out, I was reading the magazines, and one of the blood drive volunteers came by see how I was doing. I said I was doing great, and then she picked up one of the magazines and said, “Oh, could I just look at these?” I said of course, and as she flipped through them she said, “I have a brother who’s an actor, and I always like to see if they say anything about him.”“Oh, really?” I said, pricking up my ears for a possible industry contact. “What’s his name?”

“Peter Coyote.”

I didn’t respond very politely, because to me, this was like saying she was related to Justin Bieber. It’s amazing that I didn’t jump up and pass out. “Oh, you can’t be, you’re making that up!” I said, or something like it. (In my defense, I was running a pint low at that moment.)

She looked a bit offended and said, “No, I’m not, why would I make that up? Most people have never heard of him.”

“Of course I’ve heard of him! He was in E.T.! He’s a doll!” (I’m sure they took a bit more than a pint, actually.)

She seemed rather pleased at that, so I hope I redeemed myself. “He is a doll,” she said, laughing.

That was the gist of our discussion – she had other donors to see to – and I didn’t even think to ask her own name, or look at her badge if she was wearing one. (I think it just said, “Volunteer” or whatever the term is they use.) I always wondered if she was really on the level. Why would a movie actor’s sister be volunteering at a blood drive in Acton, Massachusetts, fer gosh sakes?

But then, why wouldn’t she be? Actors come from all over the place. I lived in Acton and I was trying to be one.

But now it’s the 2010s and I’m trying to be a novelist. My third book, All the Shadows of the Rainbow, is set during the 1960s, plus a few years on either side. I lived through the 1960s, but just as I did with the 1950s and The Longer the Fall, I’ve been doing what I call “total immersion research.” I’m reading as much contemporary material as I can find, and watching raw film footage from that era, and generally working to enfold myself in the zeitgeist of the times, so I can, not just write it, but live it from the inside out.

(courtesy of Peter Coyote's website)

By complete happenstance, I discovered that Peter Coyote had been deeply involved in the 1960s counterculture –he was a member of the Diggers and the Free Family, lived on several communes, worked with the San Francisco Mime Troupe, and was at the center of a lot of things that happened in those years. He’s written a memoir about it all, called Sleeping Where I Fall. I learned about it from a random reference on the Red Room website, which I rarely visit, but I just happened to click over there on the day when this book was mentioned. I instantly located a copy. I’ve been reading it for the past week or so.

I’ve been enthralled with the book, because I hadn’t known any of this about Peter Coyote’s personal history. It helps explain why, the instant I saw him onscreen, I just felt this “click.” I’ve been relating strongly to so much that he says in his book. I knew I liked him as an actor, but I never realized that he was what I think of as, “one of us.” He does have a younger sister, although he doesn’t give any clues as to her life or whereabouts. Sleeping Where I Fall was published in 1998, and I’d love to hear what Mr. Coyote thinks about the social and political developments of the last 13 years. I’d guess we share similar views.

Sleeping Where I Fall is going to be one of the most helpful resource books I read, and I’ve got a stack of them. But I’d be enjoying it even if I wasn’t writing All the Shadows of the Rainbow. To add yet more synchronicity to the mix, I found a documentary called Commune by running keyword searches on Blockbuster. When it arrived, it turned out to be about Black Bear Ranch, one of the Free Family communes that Peter Coyote lived with, and Mr. Coyote appears in the film.

It’s just strange how themes and people can weave in and out of our lives in violation of all probability or logic. Over and over again, I’ve been downright spooked by the way things that I’m writing tie into my real life in completely unexpected and inexplicable ways. It’s part of the reason that I’m one of those writers who feel that their fictional universes and characters have wills of their own. I don’t calculate and control the stories I tell, or the people who inhabit them. My characters tell me what’s going to happen and I simply record it … and sometimes, I feel like I’m living it with them. Every once in a while, I feel like I’m living out my fiction in the (so-called) real world.

You might think I’d be more nervous about blowing things up in my novels, in that case! But what good is art if it doesn’t shake you up sometimes?