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August 29th - 31st, 2008

This is our 3rd trip out to Indianapolis for HorrorHound’s 4th convention.  We weren’t able to make it to the Pittsburgh show, which was a major bummer.  Oh well, can’t hit them all.  But as always, we had a fun time.  We had more room in the van on the road this time out, due to some unfortunately drop outs.  But with me, Chicago Creepster Kristin, myself and gore artist Putrid, we still made the short trip down go even faster.

We love doing this show, since Indy is a quick and easy drive for us.  Plus, there’s enough stuff in the close vicinity when we go out looking for food.  There were a lot of names at this show that we’ve seen before, so we were more excited about just having a good time.  But there were two celebs attending that we were excited to meet.  The first one being Doug Jones.  We’ve been a big admirer of him and his work, along with many other fans, after his role in Guillermo del Toro’s Hellboy.  And then to top that off even more, the incredible double performances he did in del Toro’s Pan’s Labyrinth was even better.  We were amazed to find out all the different films that he had worked on, where we didn’t either didn’t recognize him, or just didn’t know it was him.  He’s an amazing talent, and was gracious enough to spend a few minutes with us for an interview.  He’s one talented guy and hope that he can bring more recognition to those poor actors who are so much more than “guy in suit”.

The other guest that we wanted to meet was John Amplas, star of George Romero’s Martin, and many other roles both in front of and behind the camera.  Of course, besides Martin, he’s also known for playing the Nathan Grantham zombie in Creepshow.  Amplas was a super nice guy and really loved to be there talking with his fans.  We had a great conversation on educating fans of the genre of the “old guys like me”, to quote Amplas.  Really hard to believe that the movies that Amplas worked on with Romero really were that long ago! 

Joe Dante was there, along with sort of a Dante reunion with guest like Dee Wallace, Belinda Balaski, Zach Galligan, and of course, the immortal Dick Miller.  The last time I had seen Mr. Miller was at my very first horror convention, back in 1988, where he appeared briefly at the Fangoria’s Weekend of Horrors in California.  He was an icon back then, and still is today.  He was awarded the very first HorrorHound Hall of Fame award at the show.

Derek Meers was there to promote the remake of Friday the 13th, where he plays Jason.  Usually I wouldn’t have cared much for another remake, especially coming from Michael Bay.  But will say that Mr. Meers is not only one big and intimating looking guy, but he’s extremely nice and loved meeting the fans of the Friday series.  He also had brought along a little snippet of footage from the new film which seemed to get a good reaction from the crowd.  This Jason isn’t the slow, stalking type which we’re use to seeing.  While we are going to go into this with very low expectations (since it’s the latest from the Hollywood remake platter), we hope for Meers’ sake that it does pretty good.

Of course, I was pretty bummed to see that the standard price of autographs now are creeping up to $25.  I thought they would have pretty much tapered off at $20, but how I was wrong.  This is really getting out of control, and I really feel it will be the downfall of conventions.  As we’ve said many times before, people can’t afford to spend that much on autographs and have anything left over for the dealers.  So the dealers aren’t going to come back if they can’t make money.  And if the dealers aren’t there, the show won’t be there.  I mean, seriously folks, why are we paying $20 for the autograph of some guy who was in a movie for a few seconds?  It’s one thing for the lead actor or director, but for someone who basically has a walk on?  But if we, as fans, keeping paying it, it’s not going to stop.  Just say NO to $20 autographs!

Another thing that was severely lacking was the Q&A sessions.  There weren’t any, unless you wanted to count the little talk that Derek Meers did before running the new Friday clips he brought.  Sure, they did have movies screening throughout the day, which was cool.  But we’ve always considered the Q&A’s to be entertaining and educational.  You never know what you might learn from a celeb up there during one of these.  Plus it gives the people coming through the door something to do during the day instead of walking around all day.

But back to the more positive things, one of the best things about HorrorHound is the after hours partying.  Once again, at the party on Saturday night, they had not only a huge cake, but also a bunch of White Castle hamburgers, which were calling my name.  But sliders aside, it’s a great time to be able to just mingle and hang out with different like-minded fans and geek out.


JOE DANTE

BELINDA BALASKI

DICK MILLER
     

DEREK MEERS
  

DOUG JONES
  

JOHN AMPLAS