HorrorHound Weekend: A 1980s slasher fest

Local horror director Terence Muncy and actress Jamie Lea, the star of Muncy's mutant mermaid film, "Bikini Monsters."

Despite their dire subject matter,

horror films are rarely taken seriously. To many, horror is a lowbrow

genre — the mischievous cousin of the suspense thriller. One of

the few places you can find genuine respect and admiration for the

horror genre is the HorrorHound Weekend Convention.

This year, HorrorHound Magazine is

being honest by labeling the convention an “80s slasher fest”

— what it has largely become. That is what, for the most part,

the horror genre has become as well. Even new horror films hearken

back to the days of Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees. However,

originality in horror is far from dead.

Horror films may not fill theater seats

every weekend anymore, but they are certainly packing convention

halls. And hundreds of films are released on the convention circuit

every year, such as Terence Muncy’s Bikini Monsters (from his

local company, Warbranch Productions).

You may remember Muncy from last year’s

NUVO feature story on the Famous Monsters convention, where he was

promoting his film, X. Keeping to his word of releasing a new film

every year, Muncy will be selling Bikini Monsters on DVD at


To Muncy, a convention is the

equivalent of the Grauman’s Chinese Theatre.

“You won’t see most of

these horror films on the big screen. With competition from

independent filmmakers and DVD, Hollywood can’t make enough

money off of horror films anymore. So, it has virtually abandoned the

genre. But there’s always a mantle for new horror films. Fans

just have to go to the video stores to get them,” Muncy said.

As Muncy pointed out, there were ten

indie horror films released in stores on the day of our interview.

So, in a twist of irony, the same independent spirits that brought

horror to Hollywood are taking it back.

Like John Carpenter and Wes Craven

before him, Muncy is one of those independent spirits. As its website

states, his company, Warbranch Productions, makes “old school

movies for a new age.” Its new film, Bikini Monsters is no

exception. Mixing an old-fashioned feel with a modern aesthetic, it

tells of a mad scientist and his mutant mermaids — thus evoking

the wonder of a 1950s creature feature. But while the film has a

certain B-movie charm, it is not just a cheesy campfest. There are

some genuine scares to be had in the story of a man abducting women

from beaches and turning them into science experiments.

Bikini Monsters will not make its local

screen debut until July, but a version of it will be available on DVD

at HorrorHound — the “Sammy Terry Edition.”

Sammy Terry (a play on the word

“cemetery”) was Indianapolis’ premiere horror host

in the ‘60s and ‘70s. Broadcast on WTTV, his show

Nightmare Theatre included the same campy banter as The Vampira Show and Elvira’s Movie Macabre. Donning a cape and ghoulish makeup, actor Robert Carter entertained audiences as Terry every Friday night

at 11:30 p.m. Now, his son Mark is making appearances as the

character and hosting films such as Bikini Monsters.

Muncy is also keeping this Indiana icon

alive and well with his Nightmare Theatre comic book (which is open

to aspiring artists for contributions. Visit sammyterrynightmares.com

for more details). You can find Terry and the comic book at

HorrorHound on Saturday, March 26 between 3 and 6 p.m.

Other horror that awaits ye

That is just the tip of the proverbial

iceberg. These are just a few of the many things to anticipate at


‘80s child star, Corey Feldman

tops the list of celebrities attending the convention. You know him

from such classics as Stand by Me, The Goonies, Gremlins, The Lost Boys, and Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (in which he “kills”

Jason Voorhees). Feldman will be appearing Friday and Saturday only.

Other guests include: Norman Reedus,

David Della Rocco, and Sean Patrick Flanery (the stars of the cult

classic, The Boondock Saints); Kristanna Loken (the first female

Terminator); Barbara Steele (the queen of Italian gothic horror);

Jeffrey Combs, the Re-Animator himself; Barbara Magnolfi and Stefania

Casini (from Dario Argento’s legendary, Suspiria); Ken Foree

(1978’s Dawn of the Dead); and more.

Making good on the “‘80s

slasher fest” title, HorrorHound has invited Dick Warlock, Bob

Elmore, Ted White, and Kane Hodder among others — the actors

behind the masks of bogeymen Michael Myers, Leatherface, and Jason


Speaking of masks, this year’s

convention will include Mask-Fest, which features some of today’s

top Hollywood make-up effects artists as well as hundreds of creepy

collectible masks and props. You can even bring your own masks and

have them touched up by latex mask hair specialist Laura Lady.

At Mask-Fest, you can also attend the

Halloween III cast and crew reunion panel and take a free sculpture

class with master monster artist, Daniel R. Horne.

There will also be a concert and

costume party tying in with Mask-Fest on Saturday night at 9. The

terrifyingly costumed metal band, Mushroomhead will be performing as

well as the sideshow troupe, The Invisible Man Corporation. Admission

is free to costumed participants as well as gold and weekend pass

holders. There will be prizes for the best dressed fans — so

it’s time to let your freak flag fly.

Don’t forget to check out the

Vincent Price 3-D film festival. Condensed versions of vintage Price

films (such as The Raven) will be shown from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. on


HorrorHound Weekend is bound to be

nostalgic and transporting experience. As HorrorHound Magazine’s

Editor-In-Chief, Nathan Hanneman said in a recent newsletter, “The

best part about horror resurgences is the fact that they always seem

to bring the past back with them.”


Recommended for you