This beautiful volume of William Castle films, produced by Indicator/Powerhouse Films in the UK, is quite the sight to behold. It follows the Vol. 1 release of The Tingler, 13 Ghosts, Homicidal and Mr Sardonicus, and it features a mindboggling selection of extras created by brilliant people that I love – Kat Ellinger, Samm Deighan and Lee Gambin, to name a few. I did a commentary duet with Lee on one of my favourite William Castle films, Strait-Jacket. To say I’m proud as punch is an understatement.
Journal Launch: If I Only Had a Brain
When Lee Gambin said he was creating a regular, themed journal as part of his Cinemaniacs film collective, I had no idea it would be this impressive (and this big – around 200 pages). But, Lee has managed to do it once again, and I’m proud as punch to be in the flagship edition on ‘Scarecrows in Cinema’.
My contribution is the rather thorny subject of the Jeepers Creepers franchise.
Anyone in Melbourne is more than welcome to join us at the launch of the journal on Saturday 10th November at Grub Street Bookshop where copies will be on-sale. I will be attending, although I cannot confirm an appearance by Lee’s canine son, Buddy, who is modelling the journal in this photo.
KOTCH: New DVD audio commentary
One of the most amazing minds in film commentary, Lee Gambin, has invited me to join him behind the mic to create a commentary track for a new DVD release from Kino Lorber of the 1971 film, KOTCH.
Starring Walter Matthau in an Oscar-nominated role, KOTCH is the one and only film directed by Jack Lemmon but it is the second DVD commentary by Lee and myself. What is the first one? That’s still under wraps.
Keep your eyes (and ears) peeled for more…
Watch the bear panel (grrrrrr!)
It was a pleasure to host a panel on bears in cinema following the Cinemaniacs screening of Prophecy earlier this year.
For those who weren’t in attendance, we created a Facebook live video that is now immortalised on the Diabolique website. Please watch it, and be aware that the screen will turn from landscape to portrait at about the three-minute mark.
Thanks to Lee Gambin, Clem Bastow and Christian McCrea for being so wonderful.
Cinemaniacs Presents Prophecy
On Saturday 17th March 2018, I get to introduce John Frankenheimer’s little-screened eco-monster thriller, Prophecy, at the Backlot Studios in Melbourne.
Following the screening, I will be hosting a panel featuring a menagerie of experts – Lee Gambin, Clem Bastow and Christian McCrea – discussing the subject of bears in cinema. And that’s not human bears but actual bears with claws and fur all over them.
I highly doubt there’s been a screening and panel anywhere in the world quite like this one. Here is the video evidence of it.
Gods & Monsters: Bride of Frankenstein (1935)
Writers will have favourites from their body of work, and this piece on the Bride of Frankenstein is undoubtedly one of mine.
Thank you to Diabolique Magazine and Lee Gambin for breathing new life into this piece and selecting it to kick off the ‘Gods & Monsters’ column.
I particularly appreciate the glorious photograph selection, including the one featured above of my ‘spirit animal’, Elsa Lanchester.
Melbourne, New Hampshire: Jamie Blanks and other urban legends
Some interviews are more satisfying than others, and I’m pleased to categorise this interview with filmmaker Jamie Blanks as one of them.
When you read the article, you might get a sense of why I say that. I hope you do, anyway. You’ll also hear my impassioned plea to the Australian industry to wake up and smell the roses. We have a legacy that needs to be acknowledged and protected.
Thanks a bunch to Via Vision for releasing the Urban Legend Trilogy and for offering me this opportunity, Diabolique Magazine for agreeing to run the interview on their beautiful horror platform, and Jamie Blanks for being such an ace human being.
A Bicentenary with Bite: Revisiting Dark Age
Having transformed my living room into a set for the special Umbrella Entertainment blu-ray release of Long Weekend, the unstoppable Lee Gambin got the band back together to do it all again.
This time, in a discussion titled ‘A Bicentenary with Bite: Revisiting Dark Age’, Lee Gambin, Alexandra Heller-Nicholas, Sally Christie and I turn our loving gaze to the Australian horror delight Dark Age (1987) – directed by Arch Nicholson, starring John Jarrat, David Gulpilil, Burnam Burnam and Nikki Coghill.
Dark Age nearly disappeared into the annals of lost cinema so, luckily, Umbrella Entertainment is continuing their loving work and giving this film the blu-ray special edition treatment that it deserves.
You can buy it and make it yours by clicking below…
(And immense thanks goes to Ben Gurvich for the camerawork and Justine Ryan for her able tech assistance).
Cinemaniacs’ Panel: The Thing
A trio of panellists – Dean Brandum (left, Assault on Precinct 13), myself (middle, The Thing) and Tristan Jones (right, In the Mouth of Madness) – stepped up to discuss the films of John Carpenter following a very special Cinemaniacs’ presentation of Christine on Saturday 8th July 2017.
We were pressed for time and, of course, we all had too much to say so, while the live audience got the gist of my blind adoration of The Thing, there was a plethora of information that never made it out of my mouth (of madness). Here’s the full transcript of the intended presentation for posterity…
With special thanks to my friend Lee Gambin for always trusting me with projects that are close to his heart.
Cinemaniacs’ presentation of Christine
Cinemaniacs presents John Carpenter’s masterpiece Christine, based on the novel by Stephen King, on Saturday 8th July 2016 at Backlot Studios in Melbourne.
Stars Keith Gordon and Alexandra Paul will be doing a special exclusive video interview for the screening (with questions from writer/film historian Lee Gambin). Writer/commentator Clem Bastow will be introducing the film. And…
There will be a Cinemaniacs-first panel discussing the works of John Carpenter hosted by Cinemaniacs board member Anthony Biancofiore, and featuring writers/film historians Dean Brandum, me (Emma Westwood) and comic book artist and writer Tristan Jones.
This event is selling out…