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The Collingswood Story Screening Now Over – THANKS FOR JOINING US

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We hope you have been enjoying our Indie Horror Month coverage, but believe us when we say we have saved the best for last. As a means to send the month out with a well placed shiver to cycle down your spine, we’re going to be showing one of our favorite indie movies ever. Right here. ONE NIGHT ONLY. For FREE!

Several years ago filmmaker Mike Costanza shot a movie called The Collingswood Story that despite massive acclaim no one knew what to do with. You see, in the film Costanza employed webcam technology. While that sounds like no big deal now, this film was made back when this tech was new, and possible distributors were worried that no one would get it.

As a result, unless you live in the UK, the film is very hard to find. Until now. We’ve partnered with Costanza to give the film its first and only online premiere.


Indie Horror Month Exclusive: The Collingswood Story to Premiere on Dread Central

We’ll let Mike himself bring you up-to-speed on the film’s storied history.

“The micro budget film “The Collingswood Story” is basically a love story gone to hell, but this time around the action unfolds online through each character’s webcam. A young girl goes off to college, and for her 21st birthday her BF gifts her with a webcam so they can stay all lovey dovey. However, the girl unknowingly rents a room inside of an old house where a previous owner had slaughtered his family. Introduce a crack-sy webcam psychic who warns the kids of impending doom, and let the horror games begin…

What we have is a very intimate story that covers a range of emotion with mounting fear and suspense. I first wrote the script for “Collingswood” right when webcams were introduced on the market (years before YouTube, Skype, etc.) I wanted to create a “personal” horror experience by having each character talk directly to the camera. But for the horror genre this concept had never been attempted. Would the concept work? Would video conferencing ever take off?

One day I happened upon a book that covered a series of grisly murders that took place at a historic house on Lees Lane. So, yup, the story is based on events that actually happened in Collingswood, New Jersey.

I was extremely spooked, inspired, and in awe of “The Blair Witch Project” and its prodigious phenomenon – and how much the filmmakers were able to achieve on so very little. The film opened the floodgates for other filmmakers such as myself and proved to a whole new generation that so much could be achieved on a micro budget.

When I first tried to shop “The Collingswood Story” around, I was told “No one spends time on their computers!” and “No one knows what video conferencing is!” So the film went underground. I had just worked with an incredible cast, we all had a great experience, but now what? Naturally as a proud papa I always believed in the film. I knew I had something; the trick was how do I get people to see it?

I started off by sending DVD screeners out to online horror critics. Some of the reviewers were reluctant at first and rightly so – here I was sending out a film that had no distribution and no prior festival screenings!

Soon horror critics around the world screened a “Collingswood” DVD. The reviews, to my delight, were very positive. Quotes included “A Low Budget Triumph’, “The Best Low Budget Horror Movie Since The Blair Witch Project”, and “Inventive and Frightening.” From there “Collingswood” got invited to many film festivals and won the Best Cast and Best Indie Film award.

The cast and I owe a huge thanks to the online horror community who has been extremely supportive and helped put “Collingswod” on the map.

Now that social networking is the norm, there’s been some heat on the film again. No matter who you are, no matter where you are in the business, it’s always a long and tedious process. Best advice for budding filmmakers: Learn to cut through the bullshit. When a producer informs you that he/she will get back to you “asap”, know that means you’ll never hear from them again. Always remember: Stick to your vision. Keep moving forward.

Uncle Creepy, who has been a huge supporter of “The Collingswood Story”, asked me to screen the film on Dread Central to close out indie horror month. I am truly honored by this and want to thank Steve Barton and Dread Central for debuting this never before seen version. Hope you enjoy watching it, and thanks for keeping indie horror alive!

One final note: Watch it in the DARK! Be sure to turn off all the lights in the room while viewing “The Collingswood Story”.

It’s our pleasure to announce that Dread Central will present The Collingswood Story on Saturday night, April 2nd, 2011 at 9:00 PM Pacific time, 12:00 Midnight Eastern. Tune in and let the terror begin.

Check out a trailer and some stills below.

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Todd And The Book Of Pure Evil: The End Of The End Review: A Heavy Metal Massacre In Cartoon Form

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Starring Alex House, Bill Turnbull, Maggie Castle, Melanie Leishman, Chris Leavins, Jason Mewes

Directed by Richard Duhaney and Craig David Wallace


“Todd And The Book Of Pure Evil” – Canadian television’s greatest blend of Evil Dead, Superbad and Deathgasm? Yes. That answer is yes. For two face-melting seasons, Todd “protected” Crowley High from episodic villains who were bested by metal riffs, stoner logic and hormonal companionship. Musical interruptions showcased stage theatrics like Sondheim meets pubescent Steel Panther and high school tropes manifested into vile, teen-hungry beasts. It was like a coming-of-age story got stuck between Fangoria pages – all the awkwardness with 100x more guts.

That – for worse – was until Todd fell to a premature cancellation after Season 2’s clone-club cliffhanger. Indiegogo became the show’s only way to deliver a feature-length finale, except to reduce costs and ensure completion, the project would have to be in cartoon form. Todd And The Book Of Pure Evil: The End Of The End suggests an animated curtain call for this otherwise live-action production, and from a fan’s perspective, familiar maturation follies befall our favorite bloodsoaked friend group. But for new viewers? Start with the far-superior original show – you’ll be lost, underwhelmed and baffled otherwise.

Alex House retains his characterization of Todd Smith (in voice only). At this point, Todd has thwarted the book’s apocalyptic plan, Hannah (Melanie Leishman) has died, longtime crush Jenny (Maggie Castle) isn’t as horny for Todd anymore, and best friend Curtis (Bill Turnbull) has sworn Todd’s name to Hell (since Hannah was his girlfriend). Guidance Counselor Atticus Murphy Jr. (Chris Leavins) is now Janitor Atticus Murphy Jr. because Janitor Jimmy (Jason Mewes) is now Counselor Jimmy, yet Crowley High finds itself plagued by the same satanic uprisings despite these new changes. Why is evil still thriving! How is Hannah back in class! Who is the new “Pure Evil One” now that Todd has denied the book! Welcome to the end, friends – or is it a new beginning?

At just north of 80 minutes, structure runs a bit jagged. We’re used to Todd battling one baddie over a half-hour block – backstory given time to breathe – but in The End Of The End, two mini-boss cretins play second fifth-fiddle to the film’s big-bad monster (well, monsters – but you’ll see). A double-dose of high school killers followed by a larger, more important battle with the gang’s fate hanging in the balance. Not a problem, it’s just that more length is spent singing songs about Todd’s non-functioning schlong and salvaging relationships from the S2 finale. Exposition (what little there is) chews into necessary aggression time – fans left ravenous for more versatile carnage, underwhelmed by the umpteenth cartoon erection gag. Did I mention there’s a lot of boner material, yet?

These two mini “chapters” – “No Vest For The Wicked” (yarn demon)/”Zits Alors” (acid acne) – never come close to rivaling Hannah Williams’ doppelganger bombshell (“Songs About Boners”/”This Is The End Of The End Of the End”). Hannah [X]. Williams waking up in a room full of other Hannahs, emerging from some sleep-pod chamber; Todd’s gang facing off against this new “chosen one” in a way that erases “Sack Boy” and “Pizza Face” from memory. The End Of The End dashes dildoes-swinging into the show’s biggest mystery while dropping call-backs and bodies with equal speed – maybe too hastily for some.

Now, about the whole pivot to animation – a smooth rendering of Crowley High and all its mayhem, but never representative of Todd And The Book Of Pure Evil‘s very Ash Vs. Evil Dead vibe. All the practical death effects (gigantic man-eating cakes, zombie rockstars) are lost to one-dimensional drawings, notable chemistry between cast members replaced by edited recordings lacking signature wits. This isn’t Metalocalypse, where dismemberment and bloodshed are gruesome on levels that outshine even live-action horror flicks. There’s no denying some of the magic is missing without Chris Leavins’ “creepy uncle” overacting (a Will Forte breed) or the book’s living incarnations of evil. Todd And The Book Of Pure Evil: The End Of The End plays hooded minion to Todd And The Book Of Pure Evil’s dark ruler – less powerful, a bit duncier, but still part of the coolest cult around. Just try not to think about how much radness is missing inside hand-traced Crowley High?

It’s hard not to strike comparisons between “reality” and ‘toon, because as noted above, live actors are sorely missed in a plethora of situations. Be they musical numbers, heretic slayings, Todd and Curtis’ constant references to wanking, wangs or other pelvic nods (no, for real, like every other sentence) – human reactions no longer temper such aggressive, self-gratifying cocksmanship. It doesn’t help that songs never reach the memorable level of “Horny Like The Devil,” but the likes of House, Leishman, Turnbull and Castle were masters of selling schlock, shock and Satan’s asshole of situations. Instead, lines now land flat like – for example – Leavins’ lessened ability to turn pervy, stalkerish quips into hilarious underage stranger-dangers. Again, it’s not Metalocalypse – and without that kind of designer depth, a wall prevents inter-dimensional immersion into Todd’s extracurricular madness.

If this review sounds over-negative, fret not – it’s merely wishes of what could have been. None of this is to say Todd And The Book Of Pure Evil: The End Of The End should be skipped. When you’re already known for masterstrokes of ballbusting immaturity, metal-horned malevolence and vicious teen-angst creature vanquishing, expectations are going to be sky high. Directors Richard Duhaney and Craig David Wallace successfully service fans with a smile, ensuring that rivers of red scribbled blood spurt from decapitated school children just like we’re used to. It’s just, I mean – ugh, sorry, I just have to say it one more time. BY DIMEBAG’S BEARD, this would have been an epic live-action flick. As is? Still one fine-with-a-capital-F-YEAH return to Crowley High for the faithful who’ve been waiting some 5-or-so years in a Todd-less purgatory.

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Kevin Bacon Lets Us Know the Tremors Reboot Pilot Has Wrapped Filming

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Two weeks ago we let you guys know that Tremors mainstay Michael Gross, aka Burt Gummer, was, unfortunately, not asked to be a part of the upcoming Syfy reboot series starring Kevin Bacon.

While that news upsets us a bit, being that the series has only filmed its pilot episode, we feel that there is still a big chance we could see Burt return to kick some more Graboids in the tentacle-thingies with elephant guns.

Fingers crossed.

Speaking of the “Tremors Syfy pilot, recently star Kevin Bacon took to Instagram to let us all know that filming has wrapped!

You can check out The Bacon’s post below and then make sure to hit us up and let us know how excited you are for Syfy’s “Tremors” series in the comments below!

In the Tremors follow-up, written by Andrew Miller, the killer Graboid worms that nearly destroyed Perfection, NV, 25 years ago are back; and the town’s only hope for survival is Valentine McKee (Bacon), who beat them once. But to do it again he’ll have to overcome age, alcohol, and a delusional hero complex.

“Tremors” the TV series is headed our way courtesy of Jason Blum’s Blumhouse TV and Universal Cable Prods.

We’ll let you know when we hear more about the series!

So long to NM. Had an amazing time shooting this pilot. Hope I can keep walking in these boots #Tremors

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Exclusive: Buzzard Hollow Beef Brings Cannibal Gore to the Holidays

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Holidays at the end of the year seem to be focused on one major aspect: food. From Christmas hams to Thanksgiving turkeys to Hanukkah latkes to who knows what else, eating is a very important part for end-of-the-year festivities. Personally, I’m totally okay with it because it means great food and TONS of leftovers, ensuring that I don’t have to concern myself with cooking for at least a couple of days.

But what if the holiday season were a bit more sinister and what if the food was a bit more…unsavory? Allow us to introduce you to Buzzard Hollow Beef, a new vision of horror that blends cannibal hillbillies, intense and terrifying hallucinations, and small town mysteries. If this sounds up your alley, then don’t fret about waiting because the film comes to Amazon Prime, iTunes, and other transactional platforms on Tuesday, November 21!

We’ve got a trailer, poster, and several stills for you to check out, so peruse at your will and enjoy!

Directed by Joshua M. Johnson, who co-wrote the film with Tara C. Hall, Buzzard Hollow Beef stars Bruce Jennings, Nadia Kamil, Scott C. Brown, Emily Letts, Janet Chiarabaglio, Amanda Spinella, Will Frazier, Gabriel Caste, and Doug Perkins.

Synopsis:
Still reeling from her divorce and struggling as the single mother of a 9 month old, Jordan Vollmer looks forward to a relaxing Thanksgiving weekend with her family and her best friend, Paige. As the group ventures into the small town of Buzzard Hollow, they are greeted with strange and unsavory characters, known around these parts as the Solomon family. Their suspicions surrounding the Solomons are aroused by the fact that they all seem unwilling to talk about the beef that they serve in their hamburgers and sell in their butcher shop. When the Vollmers experience horrifying hallucinations, they begin to suspect that the Solomons are somehow involved.

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