Toronto. There’s only one thing that can get me to make the trip to that fetid cesspool of drive-by shootings and yuppie scum, and that’s the annual Rue Morgue Festival of Fear. For the last three years everyone’s favorite horror mag has been putting on a Labor Day labor of love for Canadian horror fans as well as those Americans not afraid of making the snowmobile trip across the Border.
Past years have seen the hordes shuffle past such horror luminaries as Clive Barker, George Romero, Tom Savini, Bill Moseley, Doug Bradley, and Gunnar Hansen, along with a host of other less well known, but generally fascinating, guests. Like Rue Morgue magazine itself, the convention they put on is often an odd but intriguing mishmash of big-name horror sitting alongside the smaller, more anonymous denizens of the genre.
This year’s lineup is characteristically strange. The headliner of the festival is Alice Cooper, who, while no stranger to horror, isn’t exactly the type of guest all horror fans are dying to meet. I expect a much larger than normal presence of mullet-headed bangers sporting cut-off jean shorts and RATT t-shirts. Actually, I’m looking forward to having them there since gangly rockers make me feel safer around those scary anime kids…
The rest of this year’s lineup includes Karen Black, Jeffrey Combs, Michael Berryman, Roddy Piper, and Mike Mignola. All of these folks have solid genre cred, though some of them aren’t all that active anymore. The guest I’m most excited about is Jack Ketchum. The recent adaptation of The Lost (review) was lowdown celluloid nastiness, and with The Girl Next Door a few weeks into filming and Red in pre-production, there should be plenty of Ketchum movie news to be had.
The Festival of Fear runs from September 1-3 , so make sure to check back all weekend for coverage updates, and hit the fest’s official site for more details!
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