Friday, September 25, 2009
ABOVE: Jim O’Rear At The B-Movie Celebration.
I was asked by several people to post ASAP the results of the Golden Cob Awards. So…. Live, from Shelbyville, Indiana… at The B-Movie Celebration… Here I am! For those of you who haven’t been following the story, The Cob Awards are for excellence in low budget cinema. This year’s nominees ranged from Roger Corman to Lloyd Kaufman to Ray Harryhausen to Elvira to John Carpenter. It was a who’s-who of independent cinema!
I was surprised and honored to be nominated this year for Best B-Movie Actor. I was nominated against Monique Parent (WALKER TEXAS RANGER) and B-Movie King Bruce Campbell (THE EVIL DEAD, ARMY OF DARKNESS, BURN NOTICE). It was, basically, a given that Bruce Campbell would win this award by a landslide. Well, the results are in and the waiting is over.
What happened, you ask? Let’s just say it was one of the biggest upsets in award show history as I stole the award from Bruce Campbell! Yes, I won the Golden Cob this evening for Best B-Movie Actor! Whooo Hoooo! Here are a couple of photos:
ABOVE: Jim O’Rear accepts the award for Best B-Movie Actor from presenter Bill Dever.
ABOVE: Jim O’Rear (Best B-Movie Actor), Lola Wallace (Emerging B Filmmaker), and Nic Brown (Super Fan Award).
The winners of the evening were:
Best Scream Queen: Debbie Rochon
Best B-Movie Actor: Jim O’Rear
Best Efx: Tom Devlin
Best Director: Jim Wynorski
Lifetime Achievement Award: Roger Corman
Lifetime Achievement For Horror Host: Vampira
Rising B-Movie Star: Tucky Williams
Best Writer (Screenplay): Mark Poole
Best Soundtrack: John Carpenter (Halloween)
Best DVD Release: Poultrygeist
Best Emerging B Filmmaker: Lola Wallace
Super Fan Award: Nic Brown
I want to thank everyone who voted for me and gave me your support. It was great fun to be involved in an upset of this magnitude and you all made it possible!
The B-Movie Celebration continues this weekend (Sept 25-27) in Shelbyville & Franklin, Indiana, with movies, seminars, parties, and more. Check out additional info at: www.bmoviecelebration.com
Thanks for reading!!
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
ABOVE: THE HOLLYWOOD GHOST HUNTERS - (back) Steve Nappe (JASON X), Rick McCallum (DEVIL’S REJECTS), Kane “Jason”Hodder (FRIDAY THE 13TH, HATCHET) – (front) Chris “The Miner” Carnel (MY BLOODY VALENTINE 3-D), Jim O’Rear (DAY OF THE DEAD), Barry Blaisdell (GEMINI).
I recently completed my third paranormal investigation with THE HOLLYWOOD GHOST HUNTERS. This time we visited Waverly Hills Sanatorium, in Louisville, KY… considered to be one of the most haunted buildings in America. It was great to be back on the hunt with Steve, Rick, and Kane (see my previous blog covering our investigations of the South Pittsburg Hospital and Sloss Furnace). This time we were joined by a couple of other great guys, Barry Blaisdell (GEMINI) and Chris “The Miner” Carnel (MY BLOODY VALENTINE 3D).
ABOVE: The entrance to Waverly Hills Sanatorium.
Waverly started out as a small, one-room school house in 1883. By 1910 it was a two-story tuberculosis hospital equipped to handle 40 to 50 patients. As tuberculosis became an epidemic, the hospital was expanded and by 1926 it was equipped to handle 400 patients. Unfortunately, this still wasn’t big enough. However, the doctors and patients made it work as efficiently as possible and it was considered to be one of the most modern, well-equipped facilities of its kind. It functioned as a tuberculosis hospital until 1961, when antibiotics were invented and the hospital was closed.
ABOVE: A view of the back of the building.
Due to there being no antibiotics when the hospital was open, doctors had to rely on natural remedies and some rather crude treatment techniques. Most didn’t survive the plague and due to the methods of care available, many didn’t survive the treatment. Freezers filled up and bodies overflowed. The Waverly became synonymous with death.
ABOVE: Barry Blaisdell prepares equipment for the investigation.
We arrived at Waverly just before dark and were pleasantly greeted by the owner, Tina Mattingly, and some of her crew. After shooting a few photos and some video outside we broke into three groups to begin our hunt. Each of our groups was joined by one special female guest hunter for the evening (whom I won’t name here because I don’t know how public they want to be). These ladies were some of the bravest I have seen… but, more on that later. The first group started in the body chute and the first floor, the second group started on the second and third floor (where a child named Timmy has been known to play), and the third group took floors four and five (where numerous shadow people are seen and ugly things happen around a prior nurses room). The plan was for each group to rotate through the floors of the hospital so that by the end of the evening each group had the opportunity to experience the entire building and what it had to offer.
ABOVE: The infamous body chute.
I mentioned the body chute, earlier. For those unfamiliar with Waverly, one of the most talked about portions of the building is the body chute, also known as The Death Tunnel. The body chute was once used to transport the bodies of deceased TB patients from the hospital to the bottom of the hill, then to waiting hearses or trains. At the peak of the TB epidemic, many patients died everyday. In order to keep morale up and not upset living patients, the hospital administration decided to use the body chute to discretely send bodies away from the hill. The logical step was to transport the bodies down the tunnel that was used to carry supplies and heat to the hospital. A railcar wench-type system was used to carry the bodies. The tunnel is 500 feet long and, due to the lack of electricity, is completely dark after the first 30 feet. Each group took their turn inside the chute (and Rick even spent about 20 minutes alone in there) but only one group experienced any phenomena… the sound of a disembodied voice lightly humming a song. Hopefully it was caught on the recorder!
ABOVE: A statue of a nurse stands perched on the edge of the roof.
Stories say that in 1928, the head nurse in Room 502 was found dead. She had committed suicide by hanging herself from the light fixture. She was 29 years-old at the time of her death and, allegedly, unmarried and pregnant. Her depression over the situation led her to take her own life. It’s unknown how long she may have been hanging in this room before her body was discovered. In 1932, another nurse who worked in Room 502 was said to have jumped from the roof patio and plunged several stories to her death. No one seems to know why she would have done this but many have speculated that she may have actually been pushed over the edge. Room 502 has become a popular place for paranormal activity. At one point, Kane Hodder thought that he was touched by something just outside of this room… but we couldn’t be sure. Other than that, this room stayed extremely quiet while we were in the building.
ABOVE: Another view of the back of the building.
A bit frustrated by the lack of activity in the building on this particular night, my group decided to experiment a bit. Kane placed himself alone in the lobby of the building while I crawled into a body tray inside the morgue and slid myself inside. We were hoping this might spark some kind of paranormal reaction. I immediately received a hit on the K2 meter and the guest investigator accompanying our mini-group (who was standing outside of the body slot I had crammed myself into) saw a black figure of a man stepping through the doorway of the morgue toward us. But, as quick as it started… it ended. Even provoking wasn’t eliciting a response. However, Kane… who normally doesn’t encounter any phenomena on the hunts… finally experienced something he couldn’t explain while sitting in the lobby on the opposite end of the hall from us. The rustling of clothing and the click-click-click of approaching footsteps. Kane spoke to the unseen entity, but it would only come within a few feet of Kane’s chair. We’re hoping that the camera pointed at Kane caught the sounds and possibly a figure. We’ll know more upon review of the evidence.
I decided to sit alone in the room, as well, to see if the same thing would happen while Kane and our guest investigated the morgue. It was very silent for several minutes until I started talking to the darkness. I got a hit on the K2 meter and thought I was going to get a conversation started, but… no such luck. After a few moments I heard the shuffling of feet behind me and then the battery in the camera drained and shut off. I knew something was about to go down. The doors behind me rattled and then it was silent again. I called Kane to check the camera and after he had it rolling again our guest stated she was willing to sit alone in the room. Remember, I mentioned earlier that these girls were brave? I’ve sat in some creepy places in my lifetime, but that room was one of the creepiest! It had a strange vibe that made you realize that there was some other presence in it at all times… not, at all, comfortable. This girl had nerves of steel! Not only did she sit in there alone, but she directly communicated with whatever was in there through a series of knocking noises. I can’t wait to see what the camera caught!
ABOVE: Another view of the entrance to the building.
Impressed by the activity in the lobby, we gathered the group for a meeting to see what had been encountered and to let each member have a chance at experiencing the phenomena in the lobby. There wasn’t much to report from most of the members, unfortunately. Some heard an inhuman growling in one of the hallways and a voice that said, “We’re here,” but that was about it. We shared our experience and everyone took a turn sitting in the chair in the lobby. Almost everyone experienced the same phenomena in that room… and almost every battery we had drained each time someone new went in.
The hour was late and it was time to call it a night. I want to thank the owners of The Waverly for allowing us to have a fun night investigating. I hope we have the opportunity to go back and spend more time trying to contact the entity that resides in the lobby!
Footage from the Hollywood Ghost Hunters investigations can be found at: www.HollywoodGhostHunters.com
Stop by and check it out when you have the chance!
Thanks for reading!
Thursday, September 17, 2009
ABOVE: Steve Nappe (JASON X), Priscilla Barnes (DEVIL’S REJECTS, THREE’S COMPANY), Kane “Jason” Hodder (FRIDAY THE 13TH, HATCHET), and Jim O’Rear (DAY OF THE DEAD, THE DEEPENING).
The ScareFest is over and a great time was had by all! It was a three day weekend event in Lexington, KY, filled with horror celebrities, paranormal events, seminars, music, parties, and more that attendees will not soon forget!
ABOVE: Attendees pack the showroom floor in search of autographs and collectible items.
I arrived in Lexington on Thursday night, fresh from the Indiana set of Jim Wynorski’s new comedy (see future blog for details) to be greeted in the lobby of the Hyatt by Gunnar “Leatherface” Hansen (TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE), Kane “Jason” Hodder (FRIDAY THE 13TH, HATCHET), and Steve Nappe (JASON X). Sitting down at the bar for a few drinks and a gander at the Tennessee Titans football game that was playing on the widescreen mounted to the wall, the four of us were quickly joined by Doug “Pinhead” Bradley (HELLRAISER) for some fun conversation. After some great fellowship it was time to retire upstairs for some much needed rest and prep for the upcoming 3-day event.
ABOVE: Doug “Pinhead” Bradley and Jim O’Rear.
Arriving on the showroom floor, Friday, I was greatly impressed by the organization and layout of the show. Vendors were ready, celebs were taking their places at their tables, and a line of attendees was forming outside the main entrance.
ABOVE: Robert Kurtzman, formerly the “K” in KNB Effects group (FROM DUSK TIL DAWN, DEVIL’S REJECTS, WISHMASTER), stands at his incredible Creature Corp booth.
I situated myself at my table and found I was in good company, sitting beside and across from such celebs as Priscilla Barnes (DEVIL’S REJECTS, THREE’S COMPANY), Walter Phelan (HOUSE OF 1000 CORPSES, FROM DUSK TIL DAWN), Gunnar “Leatherface” Hansen (TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE), Ken Foree (DAWN OF THE DEAD, HALLOWEEN), Dee Wallace (E.T., THE HOWLING, CUJO), Leslie Easterbrook (DEVIL’S REJECTS, POLICE ACADEMY, LAVERNE & SHIRLEY), Chris Carnell (MY BLOODY VALENTINE 3-D, SPIDERMAN), Danielle Harris (HALLOWEEN, THE LAST BOYSCOUT), Caroline Williams (TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE 2, HALLOWEEN 2, DAYS OF THUNDER), and many more.
ABOVE: Barry Blaisdell (GEMINI), Chris Carnell (MY BLOODY VALENTINE 3D), Jim O’Rear (SCREAM FARM), and Danielle Harris (HALLOWEEN).
As the doors opened there was a flurry of activity… a lot of people for a Friday (typically a slow day as people trickle in for the weekend). Costumed characters, horror fans, and paranormal investigators filled the floor. David Fultz, the announcer for the weekend, effectively kept things going on the loudspeaker so that people were informed of all the events as they happened.
ABOVE: An axe-wielding fan puts on her creepy eyes for the camera.
The day was filled with seminars, films, and networking opportunities. As the day wound down it was time for the evening costume contest. There were a lot of creative entries. Unfortunately, I was starving and couldn’t stay to see it all.
ABOVE: A zombie bride wanders the floor just before the costume contest.
ABOVE: This axeman is ready to chop up the costume contest competition!
After a late night dinner I made my way, with Tucky Williams (DEAD MOON RISING) and Nic “B Movie Man” Brown, down the road to a party/cookout where THE LEGACY was being screened (a film I did a cameo in with Daniel Emery Taylor and his wife Ami). It was a nice way to wind down the evening.
ABOVE: Jim O’Rear (COP & ½), James Hampton (TEEN WOLF, SLING BLADE) and his wife, and Steve Nappe (JASON X).
Saturday opened with a bang. There were so many fans and activities that the whole day is a blur! I seem to remember some interesting panels and fan events, in between signing autographs and speaking to people. I also enjoyed running into other old friends such as Jason Crowe (DEAD MOON RISING), Kayla Perkins (THE DEVIL’S PLAYGROUND), George Bonilla and the ZP International crew (HELL-EPHONE), TJ Moreschi and Roni Jonah (THE LEGACY), ultra-cool zombie artist Billy Tackett and his lovely wife Heather, Jerry Williams (GOATBOY), and many more (if I left you off the list I apologize… it was a CRAZY day!).
ABOVE: Ken Foree (DAWN OF THE DEAD), Jim O’Rear (THE DEAD MATTER), and Caroline Williams (TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE 2).
ABOVE: Walter "Dr. Satan" Phelan (HOUSE OF 1000 CORPSES) and Jim O’Rear (HELL HOUSE).
It was an exhausting but awesome Saturday. As the daytime events closed, Gunnar Hansen and I ran down the road to a pizza joint for a quick bite to eat before the evening VIP party. There was still a full night of activity ahead!!
ABOVE: Jim O’Rear, the lovely Sarah, and Warrington “Jason” Gillette (FRIDAY THE 13TH PART 2).
The VIP party was packed and the DJ was pumping out classic tunes as various guests and attendees danced along. The DJ even managed to work in The Time Warp from THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW. Fun stuff!
ABOVE: Mike “Hari Krishna Zombie” Christopher (DAWN OF THE DEAD), Priscilla Barnes (THREE’S COMPANY), and Jim O’Rear (DEVIL’S PLAYGROUND) enjoy the VIP Party together.
ABOVE: Gunnar “Leatherface” Hansen pauses during the VIP Party for a photo op with paranormal investigator and ScareFest organizer Patti Starr.
ABOVE: Here’s a dancing pair you don’t see everyday!
As the VIP Party wound down it was time to find more fun. I got a phone call from from Billy and Heather Tackett telling me that the party was moving across the street to a piano bar called The Penguin. Todd Burrows, from ZP International, came to show me the way. The Penguin was packed! Three bachelorette parties were already underway and the crowd was wild!
ABOVE: George Bonilla (ZP INTERNATIONAL) parties it up at The Penguin.
As a side note… While in Lexington, I had the opportunity to explore a bit of the city with Barry Blaisdell (HOLLYWOOD GHOST HUNTERS). Great architecture! I’m a sucker for cool buildings. Among many things of interest, I found out that there is a college there called Transylvania University! Why didn’t I know this??? Look, here’s proof:
It’s a beautiful campus…. And I got the T-Shirt to prove it! Another thing I found entertaining during our exploration of the city was the manhole covers. Notice the oxymoron displayed:
Ha, ha, ha… “Sanitary Sewer!” Isn’t that great? Also, we came across this awesome castle that looks like it could have been part of a Harry Potter Movie. Check it out:
But, I digress…. Back to The ScareFest!
ABOVE: Jim O’Rear (CHAINSAW CHEERLEADERS) and Leslie Easterbrook (DEVIL’S REJECTS, LAVERNE & SHIRLEY).
Sunday, another typically slow day, saw more people file through the doors, again. Another busy day, right up to the end! What a show! People packed up and said their goodbyes in hopes of seeing each other again very soon.
ABOVE: Carmen Reed (the real person that THE HAUNTING IN CONNECTICUT is based on) and Jim O’Rear (MORTAL KOMBAT).
The ScareFest was a great show and I’m so glad I had the opportunity to take part. I look forward to seeing the show again next year!
Thanks for reading!