We Need A New Iconic Horror Villain!

ImageGrowing up in the 1980’s was awesome. We had great movies genre movies coming out constantly like The Thing and Aliens. But one thing that really made genre movies so special in the 80’s was the glut of iconic horror villains we had to fear. From the 1970’s on through the hayday of the 80’s we had the likes of Leatherface, Freddy, Jason, Michael, Chucky, Pinhead and so many more. To a lesser extent you can include the Predator and the Xenomorphs from the Alien franchise. These were characters we rooted for, feared and hated all at once. They were wiping out the sinners. They were sparing the pure while making them strong. This was something I still feel that churches should get behind. 


In most horror films from the 80’s you had a bunch of immoral types likes druggies, drinkers, fornicators and just all around undesirables, Then you had the heroine of the film – a girl filled with chastity and virtue. Who lived and who died? It’s pretty simple, really. The chaste girl always won out in the end. Why? Because she was pure of heart, mind and soul. This should be something the church recognizes and backs. They should want these films made and should show them in Sunday school. After all, most churches try to instill fear into their children to keep them on the straight and narrow. Catholics, I’m talking to you!


But I got away from my original point. We don’t have iconic villains being created anymore. At best we get inferior remakes of A Nightmare On Elm Street and Halloween. But where are the new guys? Ghostface Killer from Scream? He doesn’t quite fit the bill but he’s close. Jigsaw from Saw? He’s been dead since the third movie. But he’s also a little closer in theme. He did go after sinners, people not living life to their full potential and attempted to purify them. What about the invisible demon from Paranormal Activity? Nope. Although there is the family connection there as there was with so many horror films in the 80’s. Death in Final Destination? Again we never see him. And I always felt they should refer to him as Rube for the elaborate Rube Goldberg style traps we see in each kill. 


The closest thing we have to 70’s and 80’s style icon is Victor Crawley from Hatchet. He’s one bad mammajamma. But, sadly, the Hatchet films barely get a theatrical release. It’s as if Hollywood doesn’t think we want a new crop of evil baddies…unless they’re remake versions of the originals.



But here’s my question – is it Hollywood or is it us? What do we want to see? More of the same watered down PG-13 ghost stories, torture porn, or do we want a return to old school horror? I vote for old school. I hope I’m not the only one. I also hope it’s not because I was raised on them.   

That’s all I have to say on the subject until Wednesday when the next edition of The Gorram Nerd Hour hits. You can follow me on Twitter here, here and here. Or find us on Facebook.


Lepus And Terrestrial Updates

ImageI know, I know. I spend a lot of time on here talking about Lepus. Cut me some slack. This is the first time I have officially directed something. It’s like when someone has a baby. Even if the baby is a hideous chud they still want to share pictures on Facebook all the time. Now, I’m not calling Lepus hideous. I’m simply stating that, for all intents and purposes, this is my baby and I want to share it with the world. Is that so wrong? I’m proud of what I created. 


Last night Brian and I met with David Sabal for a few mintues before he was a guest on The Gorram Nerd Hour. During that time he filled us in on what was happening with distribution. It’s been decided that we are going to be distributed by Worldwide MultiMedia. The other five distributors that were looking to pick us up wanted to wait too long to release the DVD. Worldwide can have it out by June (more details on the exact release date as they come in). They will also have copies available before hand for us to autograph and sell at Phoenix Comicon in May. If you’re gonna be there then come get your copy. You won’t be disappointed…well, I can vouch for Lepus at least, not the other shorts in the Scream Machine DVD. Maybe I should “You hopefully won’t be disappointed as I haven’t seen the other shorts”. Anyway, we will also be selling copies through our Facebook page.


Last night we did a little foley work on the project and then talked about our next short film, Terrestrial, that we will hopefully be shooting next month. We just have to wait and see when our lead actor is available. He is going to be busy shooting a movie through part of February. Our second largest role, the character of Travis, has a similar issue with the actor. We wanted to shoot a certain week in February and he will be out of town. These are the people we absolutely want for the short and we will wait if that is what it takes. We loved these actors and really want to see what they do with the roles. You can hear the official casting announcements on The Gorram Nerd Hour later tonight when it goes up. Otherwise you can wait a week for us to post it on our Facebook page and Twitter.

Lepus Is Part Of Scream Machine!

Alrighty folks, from the start it has been talked about that we would be a part of something once Lepus was finished shooting. Well, as it turns out that something is a feature called Scream Machine. The other shorts were all done by former horror host Scarlet Fry. He and our DP David Sabal had worked together on all the other shorts. They were looking to add another one to the line-up before they put this baby to bed. Because Brian Smith and I are friends with David and happened to show him a script right around the same time he jumped at it and off we went. 

I don’t know how we got so lucky to be able to get distribution on our first short film but it happened. We also got incredibly lucky with our cast. It’s been amazing how things went for us. Just a few months ago Brian and I were feeling dejected because nobody even wanted to read our feature script, “Welcome To Deadsville”. Now, Tyler Gallant wants to star as the lead in it. He wants to make the proposed sequels to “Lepus” and he wants Brian and me to collaborate on a feature he and Kat Garcia came up with. And, about a month ago, I was talking to Bill Oberst Jr. about “Welcome To Deadsville” and he wants us to keep him in mind when we are ready to shoot. I would love for him to play the Phil character. Things are looking good. 

We still have a couple pick up shots to do. The biggest thing is just making sure my sister’s death scene is sufficiently gory. Unfortunately we have to wait about a week or so for David to get back from Boston to shoot it. There are a bunch of photos from the last night of shooting up at our Facebook page. There are a lot of great shots of Victoria Paege dressed like a sexy nurse before, during and after she gets all bloodied up and bruised. Also, you can check out the iMDb page. It’s still not complete yet. There are a few fixes to be made. First, I am listed as an actor in it but when you click on my name it goes to some kid in Texas. Not me. Second, Brian’s credit somehow got attached to a different Brian E. Smith. Third, my director credit isn’t up yet. Otherwise everything else is there. Go check it out, “like” it, and come to Phoenix Comicon for the premiere!

Heavy On Neon, Light On Zombies – Night Of The Comet Reviewed

1984 was a simpler time. Video games were still in their infancy, cell phones didn’t exist, Al Gore hadn’t invented the internet, and movies like Night Of The Comet had a shot at a theatrical run.

Night Of The Comet starred Catherine Mary Stewart of The Last Starfighter, Kelli Maroney of Chopping Mall, Robert Beltran of Star Trek: Voyager, and Geoffrey Lewis of The Devil’s Rejects. It was directed by Captain Ron helmer Thom E. Eberhardt. The film is about survivors after a comet wipes out everything on the planet except for those safely tucked away in anything made of steel. Everyone else was turned to dust. Well, not everyone. Some slowly turned into zombie like creatures that we never really saw feed on anyone.

The movie begins by showing Reggie played by Stewart working at a movie theater. She is a wiz at some video game in the lobby. Every high score is hers but one and she gets mad when she notices that number six on the list is not her. Firm she goes to the projection booth to have sex with the projectionist. She falls asleep there and discovers in the morning that she is one of the few survivors. She goes home to discover her sister Sam, played by Maroney, also survived because she slept in the shed overnight.

The sisters then go to the radio station because the DJ is still on the air. When they get there they discover it was pre-recorded but they meet Hector, played by Beltran. Together they have some adventure that take place off camera, like looking for guns, and then go shopping. There is a montage sequence of the sisters dancing around and trying on clothes set to Girls Just Wanna Have Fun by Cyndi Lauper.

While at the department store things move along at a faster pace. They are discovered by a group of men who are infected and slowly turning into zombies. They try and kill the girls with their guns while Reggie is the only one armed on het side. The girls are on opposite ends of the store but the two armed men shooting at them stick together and just turn to shoot rather than split up. They also never reload. I guess this store sells guns that have magical reload capabilities. Eventually they’re caught and then saved by survivors from a think tank from just outside of town that is gathering up people to experiment on.

Is this movie making any sense to anyone at this point? It doesn’t make sense to me…but I still love every minute of it. There’s the terrible acting of the department store zombie guy, the weirdness of the female characters, the terrible dialogue. What’s not to love?

This movie is bad from start to finish. There’s no two ways about it. But this is the sort of infectious bad movie that makes you love watching it and hoping that the joy will last all the way to the end. I make no apologies for liking this movie and don’t feel I should. It’s something that could only come from the 80’s. People have tried and failed since. There was a different sensibility back then. Things were less jaded. People could make a fun bad movie and it was accepted for what it was. Now, people expect more. The difference is that they don’t expect more story. They just want more explosions and pretty pictures to distract them from the badness. I give this movie 4 out of 5 stars.

This movie will he reviewed on the next episode of The Gorram Nerd Hour where you will hear Brian’s opinion on this film as well. Find us on Facebook or Blogspot.

Good News For Our Upcoming Projects

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, children of all ages! We got really lucky with Lepus, our first short film. Tyler Gallant, one of the people who will be starring in The Hunger Games 2: Catching Fire still plans to shoot Lepus when he gets back from Atlanta. This man is destined to be a big star one day and doesn’t want to turn bus back on the projects he committed to before his star began to rise.

Not only will is be doing Lepus but he is also interested in taking the lead in our first feature film project, Welcome To Deadsville. He loved the script and wants to see it made.

Soon he will be guesting on our podcast to talk about his experiences on the set of Catching Fire and what we can expect from him in the future. I cannot wait to have him on The Gorram Nerd Hour. We will let you know when we schedule him for his appearance. In the meantime go check out http://facebook.com/TheGorramNerdHour and http://gorramnerdhour.blogspot.com to listen to our latest episodes. You can also find us on YouTube with some exclusive interviews and content from Rapture Horror Expo.

Wonder Woman, No Wonder Your Show Never Aired

I’ve been on this kick lately of trying to find things that were never officially released to watch. That led to my curiosity about the failed Wonder Woman pilot episode that never aired. Sure, we all saw the pictures of Adrianne Palecki in the costume and probably thought this was a sure fire hit no matter how bad it sucks. Thankfully we were all wrong.

First off, what was the deal with Diana being called Diana Themyscara? And she owned a giant corporation? And everyone knew she was Wonder Woman? And she kept an apartment under the name Diana Prince where she would get away and watch romance films with her cat? What the hell?

I get why Palecki did the show. She’s an up and comer who is still looking for that big break. And GI Joe: Retaliation isn’t it. That movie was a bigger piece of garbage than this. It’s no wonder they wanted to pull the movie from the Summer line up and do massive re-shoots. Tracie Thoms also starred in the pilot episode. She has been in bigger stuff like Rent, Death Proof, and another failed television series close to my heart – Wonderfalls. The cast was rounded out by Cary Elwes as her advisor or something. It wasn’t made clear what he did exactly. And the other big name was Elizabeth Hurley as the main villain. Even with this impressive roster of actors and being written and produced by David E. Kelly it was still a giant mess.

I think David Kelly was out of his comfort zone with this project. I don’t know why Warner Brothers handed this over to the guy behind Ally McBeal, Picket Fences, Boston Public, and The Practice. That doesn’t make me think, “This guy would be the perfect fit for a show about an Amazon princess who fights super villains”.

After watching Arrow recently (which we talked about on the latest episode of The Gorram Nerd Hour) and seeing how they got that pretty much right in tone and structure I can’t imagine what they were thinking with this. Oh well, at least it never aired. That’s something, I guess.

If you want to hear more about Arrow then check out the latest Gorram Nerd Hour now up at http://gorramnerdhour.blogspot.com and don’t forget to “like” our Facebook page http://facebook.com/TheGorramNerdHour

The Gorram Nerd Hour Episode 3

We just finished recording our latest episode of The Gorram Nerd Hour. It was an episode of firsts. Brian and I both agreed on something. That was a first for the show. We also conducted a couple of phone interviews. As I mentioned previously The Rapture Horror Expo is coming up October 5-7th. We had the man behind the con, KB, talk to us via phone to tell us what we can expect from the first horror con of it’s kind at the Mesa Convention Center. Then we got on the phone with Dave Reda and the lovely Jessica Cameron and talked about their upcoming movie “Shadow”. It sounds like an awesome concept. I can’t wait to see it. They were both driving to a convention in Sacramento and we lost signal a couple times but we got through it. Jessica was telling us about a movie she will be promoting here called “The Black Dahlia Haunting” and Dave told us about his time as an extra on “So I Married An Axe Murderer”. They were very nice folks.

During the time we spoke with KB he told us that there will be a bunch of special guests coming. He mentioned Jake Busey and Tony Todd, which we already knew about. We found out that “My Bloody Valentine” star Betsy Rue will be there, the man who played Kincaid in “A Nightmare On Elm Street 3 and 4”, the star of “Abraham Lincoln Vs. Zombies”, director and comic book legend Brian Pulido, and a lot more. Visit their website for full details http://rapturehorrorexpo.com

Brian also ranted a bit about Superman Issue 0 that just came out and how they’re changing everything. We talked about the cinematic stink bomb that was C.H.U.D. and even managed to squeeze in time to talk about some potentially big news about the upcoming X-Men movie sequel/prequel. And we had a chance to plug our friend Ricardo Vasquez’s movie “The Fallen One” which shares a couple cast members with our upcoming short film “Lepus”. It was a good episode. You can find it Monday at http://gorramnerdhour.blogspot.com and http://facebook.com/TheGorramNerdHour.

Mending Fences

About a year ago Brian Smith and I finished writing Welcome To Deadsville. We wrote it after meeting a director that encouraged us to do it. He said that if the script was good he would direct it. After several meetings with him we realized he just didn’t understand the material. We tried to find a way to handle the situation and tell him we wanted to find someone else to direct. We were afraid he would take it personally and weren’t sure how to approach the subject. While trying to figure out a way to talk to him about it the problem just sort of went away. We harbored no ill will toward the man and we hoped he felt the same way. We all just moved on.

After a short time Brian and I discovered that he had a new film project in the works and everything was going well for him. We were focused on making our short films which we decided I would direct and Brian would produce. It all seemed to work out. In fact, we are grateful to the man for giving us motivation to get started.

Here’s how it went. I met him at Phoenix Fearcon about a 1 & 1/2 years ago. We got to talking about our mutual love of horror movies. A couple weeks later Brian and I met him for drinks and pitched him the idea for Welcome To Deadsville. He encouraged us to write. So we got the Final Draft program and hammered it out. At the same time Brian got to know a man who was working at the Phoenix Comicon and got us both in there to work in the film festival. It helped us make some new contacts. That leads us to how we found someone to help us get Lepus going. That also led to getting our podcast off the ground and getting in with Abnormal Entertainment.

It’s amazing how one chance meeting can change the course of everything. Sure, the Phoenix Comicon was a separate thing but we wouldn’t have had as much reason to do it had we not first written a script and had something worth meeting these people for.

That pretty much gets us up to speed. So now I would like to say I wish this other director the best of luck with his current project, The Fallen One, and all future endeavors. We spoke last night and agreed to cross promote each others work. You can find a Facebook page for The Fallen One with more info but I will tell you this much – Fred Williamson is in it as well as two of my Lepus cast members, Rob Edwards and Kat Garcia.

And don’t forget to go “like” http://facebook.com/RobotVampireProductions, http://facebook.com/TheCristosSaga, and http://facebook.com/TheGorramNerdHour as well as visiting Abnormal Entertainment’s Facebook page and http://abnormalentertainment.blogspot.com and http://gorramnerdhour.blogspot.com .

Alright, enough shameless self promotion for now. Thanks for your support

The Gorram Nerd Hour

Ladies and gentlemen,

Brian Smith and I have been picked up by Abnormal Entertainment to do a weekly podcast called The Gorram Nerd Hour. Each week we will be reviewing a B grade genre film from past or present. This weeks episode we reviewed the 80’s classic Night Of The Creeps starring Tom Atkins and Jason Lively. We also talk about movie and television news, comic books and whatever else comes up.

We are very happy to have been included in the Abnormal Entertainment family. They have been putting on The Atomic Fallout Society for some time now with our friends Tony and David Sabal who later added Brian into the mix. Kevin Moyers and Camm Harston have said some very kind things about our first show we did independently and decided to pick us up after that. We are very grateful.

Very soon we are starting production on our short film, Lepus, and we plan to do a show from the wrap party and have some of the cast and crew on. In the meantime Brian and I are compiling a list of B movies to watch and review. So far we know we will be reviewing Jessicka Rabid, They Live, C.H.U.D., and a few others with our own brand of snark and appreciation for the art of making enjoyable bad movies. Those who have followed this blog know I love these types of films and I am so glad we have an outlet to share it with the rest of you.

Head on over tohttp://gorramnerdhour.blogspot.com and give it a listen. Also make sure to go “like” our Facebook pages http://facebook.com/RobotVampireProductions, http://facebook.com/TheCristosSaga, and http://facebook.com/TheGorramNerdHour. We’d love to hear your feedback. 

Go Like Our Facebook Page

Robot Vampire Productions, LLC has a Facebook page. We will be updating it on a regular basis as soon as we start casting for Lepus. Please go to the Facebook page and “like” us if you want to be the first to find out more about Lepus and any other upcoming projects. The page is http://facebook.com/RobotVampireProductions

Thank you for your support. We can’t wait to show you guys what we made as soon as it is finished.