UPDATE: Zombieland 2 (2019)

UPDATE: Zombieland 2 (2019)

Almost exactly ten years later we finally get to spend another day at Zombieland.

Zombieland 2 Update: Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Abigail Breslin, and Emma Stone in Zombieland (2009)

Sony announced that Zombieland 2 is happening. It will reunite Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, and Emma Stone for another adventure. Though no plot has been “released”, it is rumored this film will send the team to the American Heartland. Meeting more evolved zombies than before and some other not so great survivors. All while learning to be the crazy patchwork family they are.

Zombieland 2 Update: Woody Harrelson and Jesse Eisenberg in Zombieland (2009)To recap the original Zombieland, this film came out in 2009 from director Ruben Fleischer, who is also bringing us the Marvel film Venom. It was a Zom-Com (zombie comedy) that followed a zombie apocalypse survivor named Columbus, played by Jesse Eisenberg. He traveled across the country to reach family and ran into some characters along the way. Meeting Tallahassee portrayed by Woody Harrelson first and then the beautiful Emma Stone as Wichita. The film has a great cameo that you have to watch to see, I won’t ruin it for you. Throughout the film, you also learn some great rules of the apocalypse from Columbus.

Zombieland 2 Update: Derek Graf in Zombieland (2009)

Back to the sequel. Both original writer, Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese will be coming back to lend their expertise. These two helped with Deadpool and Deadpool 2 most recently. Slated to start production in January 2019, this long speculated sequel is finally raising from the grave. The tentative release will be October 2019, just in time for the Halloween season. Who’s bringing the Twinkies to the release party?

Zombieland 2 Update: Bill Murray in Zombieland (2009)Here’s to hoping that such a quick turnaround will produce a fun dedicated flick that won’t let us down.

Happy Nightmares!

WiHM: Elvira, Mistress of the Dark

WiHM: Elvira, Mistress of the Dark

Cassandra Peterson as Elvira / Fair use doctrine.On September 17, 1951, the world was gifted with The Mistress of the Dark. Born in Manhattan Kansas, Cassandra Peterson a.k.a. Elvira started her life with a mishap that led to her success. As a toddler, she had accidentally pulled a pot of boiling water down onto her. This burnt about a third of her body and left permanent scarring. After moving to Colorado Springs, CO, at age 7, she endured the harassment of other school children and was extremely shy due to the scarring. She would later use this experience, a place she quoted as “all the freaks come from” to help inspire her Elvira persona.

Growing up, Cassandra’s mother ran a costume shop and she loved playing model for her. She told Biography.com:

I would pick out whatever was the hot costume that year — Ginger from Gilligan’s Island, I Dream of Jeanie, Miss Kitty from Gunsmoke — and my mom would make one in my size, so I would wear costumes to school all the time. Everyone thought I was a total freak. But I knew I would grow up and wear a costume one day, and that’s exactly what happened.

Cassandra Peterson as Elvira / Fair use doctrine.At 17, she became the youngest showgirl in Las Vegas in a show titled Vive Les Girls. After stints overseas as a singer and dancer, she came back to the United States as a star of her comedy show. This led to years of her being part of the best improv groups in LA, The Groundlings, working with famous comedians such as Paul Reubens and Phil Hartman. But, in 1981, the true star was born. She auditioned for a role as a horror movie hostess for a local LA TV station. The show was called Movie Macabre and her hostess name was Elvira, the Mistress of the Dark. She became a household name in no time.

Everyone loved the wickedly vampish hostess and her quirky commentary for the B movies she showed. She was never cruel or mean, just enough of a jab to make it hilarious. She also never took herself too seriously. She loved the persona of Elvira and helped it come to life not just on TV but with successful movies and home videos as well. 1985 brought us her home video series known as Thriller Video. The feature-length film Elvira, Mistress of the Dark was released in 1988. Cassandra co-wrote, produced and starred in it. Next came Elvira’s Haunted Hills in 2001, which she also co-wrote and produced. She is a lady of many talents and quickly became an icon in the horror/Halloween world.

Funko Pop Elvira / Fair use doctrine.Now, over three decades later, Elvira is still adored by millions. You can find Cassandra on the convention circuit where she loves meeting fans. Her licensed image can be found on shirts, purses, pinball machines, Pop dolls and more. A recent photobook Peterson released celebrates 35 years of beauty with over 350 images of the Queen of Halloween. And I suspect that she will hold that title forever.

Your adoring fan forever,
Cassandra Peterson as Elvira / Fair use doctrine.

Posted by ZombieGurl in STAFF PICKS, WOMEN IN HORROR, 0 comments
INTERVIEW: No Solicitors (2015)

INTERVIEW: No Solicitors (2015)

Let’s be honest, we all hate them. We hear that knock on the door or the doorbell rings and we get that feeling in our gut and think, “Oh great, solicitors”. The recent film from director/writer John Callas, titled No Solicitors is a bit extreme for what I would do to them, but hey, to each their own.
Available now on DVD and VOD, No Solicitors has all the necessary ingredients for the genre: nudity, cussing, gore. Add to that a damn good-looking cast with veteran names like Eric Roberts, Beverly Randolph, and Felissa Rose. This was a crazy ride, the actors are all very likable even if they are batshit crazy. You really can’t stop watching because you have to see how it is going to end.
Let me give you an idea of what you are getting into, meet the Cutterman family. The father, Lewis Cutterman (portrayed by Roberts) is the country’s top brain surgeon. Rachel Cutterman (portrayed by Randolph, known for her pivotal role as Tina in Return of the Living Dead) plays dear old Mom. Rounding out the family is their beautiful daughter Nicole (Kim Poirier of the 2007 Dawn of the Dead remake) and handsome, All-American son Scott (Jason Maxim from Jurassic City) who take being part of the family business very seriously. That business happens to be harvesting organs to sell on the black market. They see it as doing a great justice to society since one person could save many peoples’ lives… And the extra meat is theirs to keep. Wait, did I mention they are cannibals, too?!

The Cutterman family from No Solicitors (2015)

Living in a beautiful home with a very prominent NO SOLICITORS sign by the door, they wait for them to come and ring the bell. Their latest victim is a lovely but bit insufferable realtor named Mindy (Lucy Walsh), who gets more than she bargains for when she stays for dinner to discuss selling their home. The cops snoop around, as always, along with a nosy neighbor. By the end though, you actually start to feel sorry for the damn solicitors, and just when you think it’s about to be over, a twist. I love twists.
House of Tortured Souls: I was able to interview some of the cast, they were all wonderful. My first question to all of them was do you have any funny true stories about an encounter you had with a solicitor?
Director/writer John Callas: In truth, I have chased a few away with a baseball bat – One guy said to me, “You’re crazy,” to which I replied, “Tell all your workers.” He never returned, nor was he eaten! – LOL
Beverly Randolph: I have stories every day with phone solicitors but they aren’t funny! Kidding.
Jason Maxim: It’s hard enough for UPS & FedEx to deliver packages to my apartment when I order from Amazon so I don’t really deal with unwanted solicitors. However, when I first moved to California, I delivered pizzas and a girl answered the door in lingerie. I’m pretty sure she did it on purpose. Does that count?

HoTS: As I delved deeper into the nuances of this film, I asked John how he came up with this idea.
JC: I was having lunch with a friend from Warner Bros., and he asked why I seemed upset. I explained that over my doorbell is a sign “No Soliciting”, but they keep on ringing my doorbell. They read the sign but chose to ignore the warning. He sits back and then says, “Why not write a story and kill them?” I liked that idea and took it from there.
HoTS: Upon talking with Beverly, I found out her favorite on-set moment, behind the scenes that is.
BR: The bedroom scene when Eric and I are in bed…. (NO, not the end of the sentence, haha!) and John Callas, the director, sees the bottom of my feet through the camera. He has someone get washing towels and washes the bottom of my feet! He could have told me that the bottom of my feet were dirty, and I would have gone and washed them. I am sure it was to save time but what chivalry. P.S. My feet were dirty because it was a bedroom scene, and I was running around without shoes on that day.

Beverly Randolph in No Solicitors (2015)

HoTS: I was also curious as to how she reacted to the script. Beverly is the most down-to-earth, sweetest lady and hard to picture as a cannibal.
BR: Loved the script. I was more focused on the dialogue and the story not the gore so much. The dialogue and story were intelligent, well thought out. When I saw the gore, that was different! Oh boy…lots of nervous giggling at that point. (Gotta love Beverly giggles, they are adorable.)
HoTS: I also got some time with Jason Maxim, the onset stud of the movie. I was wondering what it was like going from a movie such as Jurassic City to No Solicitors.
JM: Well, unfortunately, dinosaurs are extinct, so I went from shooting CGI bad guys to playing a bad guy, but I don’t think Scott is bad. I think, if anything, the scope and energy changed. I had a much larger role in No Solicitors and *spoiler alert* I don’t die in this movie. I really enjoy the science fiction genre because I’m kind of a nerd and I also really enjoy playing a soldier, so working on Jurassic City was a blast! [No Solicitors] felt like I took the energy home at times. I also swear one of our filming locations was haunted – that’s where I filmed the scene with Lucy and had to chop up body parts.
HoTS: Though he has never considered himself a model since he is under six feet tall, he was scouted when he was younger in both Boston and NYC. While he enjoys fashion and shooting print campaigns, like the one for Indian Motorcycles, he was always drawn to film. Perhaps his coolest gig though, he said, was to do pre-lighting for Matt Damon on the most recent Bourne installment..
JM: That job was a lot of fun because I got to pretend I was Jason Bourne and do these cool action poses on a treadmill etc.. If I was Matt Damon I would be worried, Jason definitely has him beat in the looks department.
HoTS: When I asked Felissa her thoughts on working on this film.
FR: With No Solicitors, I thought the script was a wild ride! Very unique in nature, and the cast is fantastic! I loved my character since playing victim can be awesomely delicious and fun to play that emotion. Since I was the producer on this I welcomed the time that I got to lie down! Lol! Most days I was running around like crazy!!!
HoTS: Also, she talked about how the crew and cast were all good friends. All the moments on set were really enjoyable.
Again, you can tell that the crew had a great time. This comes through in each scene. Check this film out and have some fun, just maybe don’t eat dinner while watching. Also, the book is available on Amazon as well. It has grittier details than the movie.
House of Tortured Souls would like to join Felissa and the rest of crew in dedicating this movie and review to Blake Heron. He played the intruder/rapist but many will remember him as Marty Preston from the 1996 kids film, Shiloh. Blake passed away in September of 2017. He was a beautiful person and an amazing actor. He will be missed.

Blake Heron
1982 – September

Blake Heron of No Solicitors (2015)

Happy Nightmares
Screw Calgon…Crowley Take Me Away

Screw Calgon…Crowley Take Me Away

As a loyal member of the Hatchet Army, I have been counting down the days for the VOD/Blu-ray release of Victor Crowley. This is the fourth installment of the Hatchet series from the sick mind of Adam Green (love you, Adam). That day is finally here, and I couldn’t have been happier when I got home and had this baby waiting for me. Thank you, Amazon.

Victor Crowley (2018)

Let’s talk synopsis… In my own words: Greedy survivor with brilliant manager crashed in swamp with misfit crew while wannabe director is busy stirring up old demons. Queue puns, ham acting, and lots and lots of GORE.

Yep, those are the makings of a great movie, so let’s get started.

I put this bad boy in tonight (fresh from the Amazon package), popped a Feisty Cherry Diet Coke, and was on my way. And I could not have been happier. The humor and ham right from the get-go warmed my heart. It was great to see good ol’ Hatchet Face again brought back to life by Kane Hodder. Then everyone’s favorite coward/hero Andrew Yong (Parry Shen). It was like a family reunion: wonderful familiar faces and then a few cousins you were not as familiar with that you get to know.

Young aspiring director, boyfriend, and her friend (Laura Ortiz from The Hills Have Eyes (2006)) travel to Louisiana to pitch an idea for a movie about the Honey Swamp Massacre to Andrew Yong. Keep going and you see the beautiful Felissa Rose, as the brassy publicist/manager to Andrew Yong. Felissa is best known for her role as the young Angela in Sleepaway Camp, Death House, and a slew of other bloody good Indie horror. She was brilliant as Kathleen and, at the risk of hurting Kane’s feelings, she kind of stole the show at first. After convincing Andrew to go back to the swamp for an exclusive interview (with who ends up being his ex-wife talk show host) on site, they board a plane to the bayou and introduce the new crew of misfits, one being the talented Tiffany Shepis as Casey, the on-screen love of Austin (Brian Quinn). Casey will have you almost in tears at one point if you have any heart at all. It is an interesting addition to the horror of the film.

After everyone gets to the swamp, the real fun begins. The director and her so-called team now include a tour guide who is really an actor according to him. This guy… you will love this guy – Dillon – portrayed by the wonderful David Sheridan. Yes, the same David Sheridan who we all loved as Doofy in Scary Movie. Once they all meet up, heads start to roll, and it couldn’t be more beautiful. You could tell that the entire cast had a freaking blast on this film.

The use of practical effects over CGI has always been one of the reasons I adore these films. The blood and brains and appendages look great and just a bit over the top… in good ol’ Hatchet fashion. And, just when you think after three Hatchet movies that you have seen it all, they show you some kills that just make your jaw drop. Don’t make any plans to have spaghetti or hamburgers when you put this movie on unless you have a strong constitution.

Be sure watch this all the way through. I won’t give anything away but sometimes it pays to sit through the credits. Just ask any Marvel fan.

Overall, this a strong addition to an already excellent franchise. With a great combination of an 80s camp film and the bloody gore we all want, I would say this is my second favorite of the series with the first being the original. Just can’t beat a classic. Adam Green and his crew have put together a hell of a movie, and I suggest that any Hatchet Army member out there take the ride. You won’t be disappointed, but make sure to keep your hands and feet in at all times.

Tech Aspects (Blu-ray/DVD Combo)

  • Cast Commentary — Writer/Director Adam Green and Actors Parry Shen, Laura Ortiz and Dave Sheridan
  • Technical Commentary — Writer/Director Adam Green, Cinematographer Jan Michael Losada, Editor Matt Latham, and Make up FX Artist Robert Pendergraft
  • Raising the Dead — Again Interview with Adam Green
  • Behind the Scenes
  • Trailer/Teaser

Happy Nightmares!

Winner – Funko Pop Leatherface Autographed by John “Grandpa” Dugan

Winner – Funko Pop Leatherface Autographed by John “Grandpa” Dugan

We Have A Winner!

House of Tortured Souls would like to congratulate YouTube subscriber JackChap1, the lucky winner of our contest. Up for grabs was a Leatherface Funko Pop autographed by Grandpa himself, John Dugan, who was kind enough to record this contest announcement for us:

Watch the winning announcement below:

House of Tortured Souls wants to thank all of our subscribers. Keep spreading the good horror word, and keep your eyes out for more fun contests and awesome videos.

JackChap1 - Winner Funko Pop Leatherface Autographed by John "Grandpa" Dugan

Congratulations, JackChap1!

Posted by Alan Smithee in CONTESTS, EVENTS, EXCLUSIVE, 0 comments
Trailer 2 for Victor Crowley Looks Bloody Amazing

Trailer 2 for Victor Crowley Looks Bloody Amazing

As a proud member of the Hatchet Army, I was beyond excited today to see the second official trailer for Victor Crowley come out. In a day of teen horror and enough paranormal movies to drown you, it is good to see a healthy dose of good ole campy slasher fun. You can never go wrong with that!!!

If you need a reminder, this is the fourth installment in the insane Hatchet series from director Adam Green. It picks up a decade later, lone survivor Andrew Yong’s (Parry Shen) claims that local legend Victor Crowley was responsible for the horrific massacre have been met with great controversy, but when a twist of fate puts him back at the scene of the tragedy, Crowley is mistakenly resurrected and Yong must face the bloodthirsty ghost from his past.

Victor Crowley

Just from the trailer alone, it looks to be the best sequel in my opinion. Reprising his role from the past movies is the indestructible Kane Hodder and new Hatchet Army recruits Felissa Rose (Sleepaway Camp) and Tiffany Shepis (Night of the Demons (2009)). I had a chance to talk to Felissa a bit about her experience with Adam and the Victor Crowley gang. In Felissa’s own words:

Victor Cowley is the best! It was magical, and Adam Green is my favorite and so grateful that he cast me. It’s a dream.

This film looks to give us all the best deaths and insane laughs you would expect from the series. It looks to be a great ride, and I cannot wait to do a full review when I get to watch it.

This blood-soaked party comes out on Blu-ray and VOD on February 6, 2018. Be sure to reserve yours now. Also, visit the official sites for more information.

Victor Crowley Blu-ray

Happy nightmares,

Posted by ZombieGurl in HORROR NEWS, NEW RELEASES, 0 comments
Death House Gets Updated Release

Death House Gets Updated Release

Big news in the horror world regarding the highly-anticipated film Death House. A press release was shared yesterday stating:

Indie Distributor Hannover House (and theatrical subsidiary Medallion Releasing) have entered in a pact with Entertainment Factory for a NATIONAL theatrical release of Death House. It will open in approximately 100 theaters in the top USA markets beginning February 23, 2018. The red carpet events will be open to the public in both LA (2/22/18) and New York (2/23/18). Theatrical exhibitors will include Regal Entertainment Group, Cinemark/century Group, Malco Theaters, Harkins, Marcus, B&B and Megaplex theaters.
“We share the horror-industry’s enthusiasm for the release of this film,” said Hannover House CEO Eric Parkinson, “ The concept of a film featuring the all star cast of stars from some of the biggest horror hits in recent decades is brilliant and Harrison and the entire production team have delivered a truly enjoyable result. We believe that audiences will love this film, as has already been indicated through word of mouth and pre-screenings.
The home video release and VOD release is planned for June through a distribution pact with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

Hanover House logo / Fair use doctrine.For those who have been living under a tombstone, this is an all-star packed horror thriller feature from director B. Harrison Smith. Co-written by the late (but not forgotten) Gunnar Hansen, Death House is being called “The Expendables of Horror”. It will feature some huge names from horror, including Kane Hodder, Dee Wallace, Sid Haig, Michael Berryman, Tony Todd, Felissa Rose, and more. Like a lot more.

Posted by ZombieGurl in COMING SOON, HORROR NEWS, 1 comment
HoTS Explores Halloween Goodies 2017 – 1 of ???

HoTS Explores Halloween Goodies 2017 – 1 of ???

House of Tortured Souls is committed to bringing you all things horror, and Halloween is OUR holiday. As such, HoTS staff will be making videos throughout the Halloween season as we explore the decor and goodies out this year.
First up, ZombieGurl takes you through some of the items available at Michael's.

Next, ZombieGurl shows us what's up At Home (the store, not her home, but I imagine they're quite similar decor-wise).

John Roisland tours Spirit Halloween and outlines their goodies for 2017.

Schock visits Halloween City and reveals some interesting items.

Finally, John Roisland takes a tour of his local Target and shows us what they're offering.

Stay tuned for our second installment of 2017 Halloween goodies.
Until then, creep on.
Posted by Alan Smithee in HALLOWEEN, 0 comments
Artist of the Month – September 2017: Ryan Case

Artist of the Month – September 2017: Ryan Case

Ryan Case is an artist and co-owns Sink or Swim Art Gallery in Louisville, KY, with his wife, writer/artist/poet Bridget. In their own words:
I am Ryan. It took me many years to feel comfortable enough to call myself an artist, but that is what I am. I create mainly with ink and acrylic paints, but I'll use whatever is laying around the studio from time to time. My subjects are an entire spectrum of the adorable and abominable. I am a homeschooling dad of 2 girls by day, and creative monster machine by night.
Bridget is a writer, poet, abstract painter, and jewelry designer/maker. She is known for her fierce attack in your face poetry. She is active in the animal rights, LGBT and Women's equal rights movements, and her passion is reflected in her works and words.
AotM-Ryan Case-horror art-01House of Tortured Souls: When did you know you were meant to be an artist?
Ryan Case: I've always been drawn to art. it was always my escape and my friend.AotM-Ryan Case-horror art-08
HoTS: And why do you still do it?
RC: It's a passion/obsession. I can't not paint. I'm drawn to it, and it makes me feel better. It's my own private therapy. I'll always create.AotM-Ryan Case-horror art-03
HoTS: Where do you pull your inspiration from?
RC: I absorb movies and music. though not all my paintings are of monsters, horror movies have been a huge influence on my work since day one.AotM-Ryan Case-horror art-04
HoTS: Do you have a piece you have done that you are the proudest of?
RC: I think I am most proud of my pet portraits.AotM-Ryan Case-horror art-02
HoTS: Why is that?
RC: They are usually commissioned after a pet has passed away, so I want to give them the life they once beamed out.AotM-Ryan Case-horror art-05
HoTS: Who is your favorite artist?
RC: My favorite living artist is Chet Zar, and my favorite dead artist is Salvador Dali.AotM-Ryan Case-horror art-07
HoTS: What advice would you give to young artists out there?
RC: Never ever ever give up. Every piece you do is another step closer to where you want to be. Fuck rejections. Fuck toxic people. Kick all that out of your life and mind. Focus on your work and what you want to accomplish.AotM-Ryan Case-horror art-10
Check out this gallery opening video to see a little bit more of what you can expect at Sink or Swim Art Gallery.

Stop by their Facebook page and give it a like.
And don't forget to visit their Sink or Swim Art Gallery to see more awesome horror art - some of which is available for purchase. And Halloween is just around the corner.
Posted by ZombieGurl in ART AND VENDORS, FEATURED ARTISTS, 0 comments
COMING SOON: Hatchet 4 – Victor Crowley (2017)

COMING SOON: Hatchet 4 – Victor Crowley (2017)

The Hatchet Army got a big surprise when they attended the 10th Anniversary Celebration in LA on August 22, 2017, at Arclight Hollywood. Everyone showed up to see a special showing of the original film but got a whole lot more. Director Adam Green surprised fans by debuting his fourth installment of his slasher franchise instead. The movie, aptly title Victor Crowley, sent the crowd into a frenzy and you could tell the Hatchet Army was still strong. In an age of script leaks and hackers, it is amazing that this was pulled off without a "hatch". Brian Farmer, director of upcoming 2018 film Blue Call, was one the lucky attendees. When asked how he felt about the surprise, he told me this:
My jaw hit the floor...Victor Crowley is back and he's even more pissed off then ever before. There's something special about the fourth installment. Of the Hatchet series. If you have the chance to catch it in the theater, don't miss it! Adam Green is back baby!
Kane Hodder reprises his role as Victor Crowley and scream queen Felissa Rose will make an appearance. The rest of the cast includes Laura Ortiz (The Hills Have Eyes(2006)), Dave Sheridan (Scary Movie), Tiffany Shepis (Tales of Halloween), and franchise favorite tour guide Parry Shen. The official synopsis released sounds just as fun and bloody as the original.
Synopsis: In 2007, forty-nine people were brutally murdered in Louisiana's Honey Island Swamp. Over the past decade, lone survivor Andrew Yong (Parry Shen) still claims that local legend Victor Crowley was responsible for the massacre but has been met with great controversy. Now a twist of fate puts Andrew right back at the scene of the grisly murders and Crowley is mistakenly resurrected.
Writer/director Adam Green was quoted in a press release stating:
Resurrecting the series for its tenth anniversary was our way of saying thank you to everyone in the Hatchet Army and beyond who has supported this series since its inception. This bloodbath is for you.
He also told Entertainment Weekly how he approached pulling this off without anyone knowing:
The script was called Arwen's Fancy Dinner and then, when we were shooting, it was called Arwen's Revenge, just because that was easier to fit on a camera slate. Nobody ever spoke the words Hatchet or Victory Crowley. Also, it really came down to me sort of sitting down with each and every crew member for a while, and explaining why I was doing this, and who we were doing it for. Maybe not everyone in the world is going to have their life changed when they hear, 'There's a new Hatchet movie.' But for the fans that do love this so passionately, it is going to be a surprise, and I'm just so happy that it stayed that way.
Victor Crowley will be screening at the upcoming FrightFest Festival in London. Then it will hit select theaters in the US this October as part of what is being called the Victor Crowley Road Show. Green among other cast members will travel with this show and provide special introductions to these one-night screenings across America.
I don't know about you all, but I cannot wait. The kills in the Hatchet movies are unlike no other. I will definitely be watching out for this one to see if it releases near me or even just within driving distance. This would so be worth the road trip. Check out the official teaser trailer below.

Happy nightmares!


CONVENTION REVIEW: Days of the Dead – 2017 Indianapolis, IN

CONVENTION REVIEW: Days of the Dead – 2017 Indianapolis, IN

DotD / Courtesy ZomieGurl-DaysoftheDead Indy 2017.
ZombieGurl (far left) with Eileen Dietz and fellow con-goers Kim (far right) and Maria (back).
This past July I was able to represent House of Tortured Souls at the awesome Days of the Dead convention in Indianapolis, IN. It was my second time volunteering for this con when they gave me the go ahead to cover it in a more professional aspect and write about it. Let me give you some history about how this con came to be.
Co-founders Adolfo Dorta and Rick Lara used to run a website called From Dusk till Con. In the beginning, DOTD was going to be a Midwest expansion of another well-established horror convention and they had approached From Dusk Till Con about sponsoring an even for that show. However, just a few months after the decision, the original promoter had changed their mind. This caused Mr. Bill Philputt (one of the people putting it together) left without a partner and a hotel space to fill. Adolfo stated, “Rick and I were offered the opportunity to step in as partners in what went on to become Days of the Dead. As huge horror fans who would go to several conventions a year, it was kind of a no brainer.” From there, their first show was held in July 2011 in Indianapolis, IN.
This year’s Indy show was special. It introduced the DOTD Hall of Fame. After years of guests giving their all, the show wanted to give back. The inaugural inductees were Jason Hover (owner of Jabb Pictures), Roddy Piper (RIP), and the legend himself Sid Haig.
Sid Haig, 2017 DoTD Hall of Fame Inductee / Courtesy / ZomieGurl-DaysoftheDead Indy 2017.
Sid Haig - 2017 Days of the Dead Hall of Fame Inductee
Each DOTD con also offers a Chaostume Showdown featuring special guest judges and face off events at times. It can be extreme. They will often pair with tattoo artists to bring you live tattooing. Get your favorite celeb to sign your arm and then get it tattooed. Numerous guest panels, film screenings, vendors/artists, and after parties. In addition to all this, DOTD also collects for local non-profit organizations. The Indy show campaign and food drive, titled DOTD: More Grains, broke their record books. They collected enough nonperishable food to feed approximately 3,000 meals to both people and pets in need in the Indy area.
One regular attraction at these conventions is the sideshow act of Captain and Maybelle - “America's Favorite Sideshow Couple”. They have performed at Ripley’s Believe It or Not, Americas Got Talent season six, Coney Island, and many other events. I had a chance to ask the beautiful Maybelle what they thought of working with Days of the Dead, her response was perfect, “DOTD is a place for like-minded horror fans to come together and enjoy diverse entertainment, panels, shop unique vendors, and meet a broad spectrum of celebrity guests. We enjoy connecting with our fan base and expanding our brand across the country with people who truly appreciate SHOCK!" You can visit their site at Captain & Maybelle: America's Favorite Sideshow Couple!.
Captain and Maybelle / Courtesy https://captainandmaybelle.com.
Captain and Maybelle - seven sword and balloon swallow
Days of the Dead now occupies five cities a year: Louisville, KY; Indianapolis, IN; Atlanta, GA; Charlotte, NC; and Chicago, IL. And, between me and you and all their fans, I wouldn’t expect it to stop there. If you get a chance to check it out, let us know. I will be attending the Louisville show for sure and can’t wait to share my experiences with you all.
Happy Nightmares!
Posted by ZombieGurl in EVENT REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
TRIBUTE: Haruo Nakajima

TRIBUTE: Haruo Nakajima

1954 gave us a lot of things. First RCA color television. First TV dinner sold by Swanson. The beginning construction of Disneyland. But, most importantly, 1954 gave us Godzilla (Gojira). And the man behind that classic monster was legendary stunt actor Haruo Nakajima.
Haruo Nakajima and Godzilla's Hollywood StarHaruo Nakajima donned the green suit for a dozen films from 1954 to 1972. In interviews with The Times, Mr. Nakajima said he studied many animals at the zoo and their walks to perfect his Godzilla manner. His original suit was over 200 pounds and he was quoted saying that “At the end of a day’s shooting he could wring enough perspiration from his undershirt to fill half a bucket.”
Who was Haruo Nakajima? He was born in Yamagata, Japan, on January 1, 1929. As a black belt in martial arts, be began his acting career started as a stuntman. At 23, Haruo had his first credited role in Sword for Hire, a 1952 samurai movie. Then, the moment came that changed his life. He stepped into the big green suit and made history. His last role as Godzilla was in 1972’s film Godzilla vs Gigan.
But, Mr. Nakajima was a not a one trick kaiju. In 1967’s King Kong Escapes, he traded the green scales for brown fur and portrayed the iconic King Kong. Other lesser known monster credits he can be seen depicting are The War of the Gargantuans, Latitude Zero, and Matango*. There are many more uncredited roles he had under his belt before retiring.
I had the honor and privilege of not only meeting this legend, but, having breakfast with him and other famous wearers of the green suit. It was FandomFest 2016 in Louisville, KY, and I was doing my normal volunteer duties. I came in early that Saturday to see if I could help and boy it paid off. The convention photographer was on his way to take pictures of the Godzilla breakfast (a special moment that some had paid to enjoy) and they asked if I wanted to join him. Of course, I said yes. And it was amazing. I spoke with everyone via a translator. Told them I had brought my #1 issue of Godzilla to be signed. And they invited me to their tables after my shift for pictures and autograph...for free. I was floored.
Haruo Nakajima and HoTS' own ZombieGurl at breakfastI went back and finished out my day counting each minute. As soon as I was released, I went to visit them. I got pictures and talked with everyone but saved Haruo Nakajima for last. He was all smiles and a mere two inches taller than me. I couldn’t believe it. I am a huge Godzilla nerd and I was hugging the original. He hugged and then bowed to me. He also signed my classic Marvel Godzilla #1 comic. It was an amazing day.
Haruo Nakajima and HoTS' own ZombieGurlHaruo Nakajima may be gone but his legend will live on forever. With each new installment of Godzilla, we will always think back to that first Gojira. The original kaiju. The true one. May you rest in peace and I hope you finally made it home to Monster Island.
*EDITOR’S NOTE: I saw Matango as a child and didn’t eat mushrooms for years! True story.
-Woofer McWooferson, Editor-in-Chief
Posted by ZombieGurl in EDITORIALS, OBITUARY, TRIBUTE, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: The Dark Tapes (2017)

MOVIE REVIEW: The Dark Tapes (2017)

Face the Unknown with The Dark Tapes (2017)

The Dark Tapes (2017) / Fair use DoctrineAfter three long years of dedication and personal funding, Michael McQuown and fellow producers, are proud to present their film The Dark Tapes. This film blends genres with its interlocking story-lines covering horror, fantasy, sci-fi and more. With a crew comprised primarily of himself and four producers (who also served as the primary crew members), The Dark Tapes is Michael McQuown's first film to direct. Fellow producer, Nicola Odeku gave him the original idea for the story. When asked what three words he would use to describe this film, Michael said, “Twists, Tension and Terror”. This film was 100% independent from any studio but that has not affected its achievements. Among the film festival circuit, The Dark Tapes has won or been nominated for 61 awards across 30 festivals. This includes a nomination for a Rondo Hatton Award for “Best Independent Feature”. You can also find it ranked in the top three highest rated films ever on FoundFootageCritic.com.
The Dark Tapes is a found footage horror anthology film comprised of four primary narratives. As you watch, you will find each story original and interweaving with some great surprises in store for you. The scares are not cheap and the fear is genuine. This film doesn't rely on jump scares or gore to scare you. It will build the tension until you must turn your lights back on. It proves that you don’t need a big budget to put out a quality film. Dark imagery, good effects and sincere acting drives it to success.
It is now available for purchase on most VOD platforms, including Amazon, iTunes, VUDU, Google Play, Sling TV, Vimeo, Xbox, PlayStation, and more. Due to its popularity, Michael and his crew are already in pre-production working on a sequel titled The Darker Paths. I expect them to lead us even further into the nightmares with this follow-up.
Check out The Dark Tapes at the links below:

Happy Nightmares,

Posted by ZombieGurl in ANTHOLOGY, MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
BIRTHDAY TRIBUTE: Scream Queen Linnea Quigley

BIRTHDAY TRIBUTE: Scream Queen Linnea Quigley

"Do you ever wonder about all the different ways of dying? You know, violently? And wonder, like, what would be the most horrible way to die?"
All true horror fans know this quote by heart and the petite beauty who said it--------Trash from the 1985 cult classic Return of the Living Dead. This memorable role was played by the gorgeous Scream Queen Linnea Quigley.
Linnea was a small town girl from Idaho, but I imagine she always knew she was not quite your average Idahoan. After moving to LA with her family, she started modeling and had a few roles in B movies like Stone Cold Dead and Fairy Tales. In 1985, she was snagged up to play the role of Trash in ROTLD and cemented herself in horror history and secured her title of America's Scream Queen.
Since ROTLD, she has continued to act and even produce films such as Ceepoziods. Linnea is a devoted animal rights activist and can always be found with her beloved pets. One of the most popular celebrities on the convention circuit, you will always find her offering a smile and a hug. I had the great opportunity to meet and hang with her at the 2016 Days of the Dead festival in Louisville, KY. So sweet, petite, and full of life. I could have talked to her all day.
Let's wish a big happy birthday to Barbara Linnea Quigley! I hope all her day was a scream.
Happy Nightmares!
Posted by ZombieGurl in CELEBRITY BIRTHDAYS, 0 comments
COMING SOON: The Mist (TV series) (2017)

COMING SOON: The Mist (TV series) (2017)

In 1980, Stephen King’s novella “The Mist” was published for all to experience.
In 2007, Frank Darabont brought this chilling tale to the big screen in the movie of the same title.
In 2017, Spike TV will adapt the novella for audiences all across the US to enjoy in the safety of their own home.
The first trailer for Spike TV’s adaptation of “The Mist”, has been released, and again audiences will have to ask themselves... what is scarier, the things in the mist or that which is in ourselves? The show is set up to have ten episodes and carries the tagline:
Brief Synopsis: Small town that is engulfed by a mysterious dense mist containing monsters.
The TV show will expand on the 2007 movie release and take place over multiple locations in town, including a church and a mall. With multiple settings comes multiple personality types, all having to work together or tear each other apart in the chaos of their quiet town.
When asked if the series will establish a link to the original King novella or the 2007 Darabont movie, show creator, Christian Thorpe, told Entertainment Weekly, “It’s a weird cousin to the original material,” he says. “It has a constant ebb and flow communication with the novella. But who knows? Maybe some of the original characters will make a cameo at some point.”
Below are some of the actresses and actors that will bring this nightmare to the small screen:

  • Main character Eve Copeland is played by Alyssa Sutherland of Vikings.
  • Her husband and all around nice guy Kevin is Morgan Spector, better known for his role on Person of Interest.
  • Local sheriff Connor Heisel is brought to life by Mad Men’s Darren Pettie.

Be prepared... The Mist rolls in to your living room on Thursday, June 22, 2017, on SpikeTV.
Happy Nightmares!
Posted by ZombieGurl in HORROR NEWS, 0 comments