Horror Hound Weekend Columbus was this past weekend and I had the fortune of attending the event. This was the first time that the show had come to Columbus, usually sticking to Cincinnati and Indianapolis in the past, and I was curious what the turn out would be. This also marked the first time I’ve attended a Horror Hound show and was excited to see what was in store for us horror fans. Well I’m happy to report that Horror Hound didn’t disappoint and attendees from all over showed up in droves to see their favorite horror celebrity, sit in on a panel or browse the show floor.
When I first arrived, I was pleasantly surprised to see the parking lot at the Crowne Plaza to be overflowing and could immediately see a few people hanging by the lobby entrance in various horror get-ups.. zombies, ghouls, a Leatherface, a Michael Myers and a zombie Captain America, to name a few. As I entered the lobby, I walked past Stuart Gordon (director of Re-Animator, From Beyond) and had a quick geek out moment, which I let subside as I didn’t want to pounce on the guy unexpectedly. I’ve got to maintain a sense of professionalism after all. It was great to see someone of Gordon’s stature just mixed into the fray of horror fans, it was a nice little moment to start off the convention.
Over the course of the convention, fans could meet, interact and get autographs from many celebrity guests. The line for Norman Reedus (pictured above) consistently stayed quite long due to fans of both The Walking Dead and The Boondock Saints being eager to meet the actor. I saw Reedus multiple times over the convention and every single time I did, he was enthusiastically interacting with each and every single person. It’s really nice to see a celebrity guest having a lot of fun meeting fans. Reedus wasn’t the only one that fans were eager to meet. Elvira, Pam Grier (Foxy Brown), Tippi Hedren (The Birds), Tyler Mane (RZ’s Halloween, H2, X-men), Julia Adams (Creature from the Black Lagoon), Barbara Crampton (Re-Animator, Chopping Mall), Gunnar Hansen (Leatherface from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre), Doug Bradley (Pinhead from Hellraiser), Cerina Vincent (Cabin Fever), cast and crew from The Day of the Dead as well as contestants from SyFy channel’s Face Off were among those in attendance of the show.
I got to meet some of my personal favorites like Stuart Gordon, Adrienne Barbeau (The Fog, Escape From New York), Judith O’Dea (Barbra from Night of the Living Dead), Danielle Harris and Scout Taylor-Compton (both from RZ’s Halloween, H2). They were all very nice people and appreciative of their fans. Judith O’Dea (pictured above) stood out to me with her genuine gratitude and was just bursting with energy! It was especially nice meeting her since, even though she didn’t go on to star in many films, her character is the basis for one of the most iconic lines ever uttered in a horror film, “They’re coming to get you Barbra.” She’s an important part of horror film history and it was an honor to meet her.
The show room floor had vendors selling everything from genre movies, t-shirts, hand crafted sculptures, vinyl, artwork and various other sundries. Being that I’m a big blu-ray collector, I was naturally attracted to the Synapse Films table. Synapse is a great blu-ray/dvd distributor of horror, sci-fi and cult films. I picked up an advanced copy of the Sam Raimi/Bruce Campbell/Josh Becker cult gem, Thou Shall Not Kill.. Except, something I’m rather excited to finally watch. Fright Rags had a booth selling their fantastic horror t-shirts and seemed to be quite popular with the Horror Hound attendees. Of course, Horror Hound themselves had their own booth as well as a table for their new Final Girl brand, which you can read about here. There was also a memorable vendor I came across called Clay Guy, which is a guy named Barry who sculpts figures from horror movies/TV shows and other genre media and sells them all on his own. He had a nice display of his work which featured a lot of really cool figures. I should have picked one up but my show budget had already been met before I went back to look at the figures again. Needless to say, there was something for everyone on the show floor.
Another great aspect of the convention was the various discussion panels over the course of the weekend. I sat in panels for Rob Zombie’s Halloween, which had Scout Taylor Compton, Danielle Harris and Tyler Mane, as well as a panel that featured various cast/crew members for George Romero’s Day of the Dead. For me though, the best panel focused on From Beyond and featured Stuart Gordon and actresses Carolyn Purdy-Gordon & Barbara Crampton. Gordon seemed a bit shy at first but as the panel went on he gave some really great insight into the film as well as into his career. In fact, all three panelists offered up genuinely interesting stories and anecdotes regarding From Beyond and the other films they had been involved in. The famed horror writer H.P. Lovecraft came up quite a bit since Gordon is known for adapting a lot of his stories and Gordon revealed that there is a Lovecraft story that he has been trying to get off the ground for the past 15 years. I’ll be hoping he is given the chance to do so as I’d like to see another adaptation from the talented filmmaker.
The Pam Grier panel was also a highlight at Horror Hound. Grier was extremely honest and revealing in her discussion. She went into the troubled and dark past that led her to take her first role and how that helped inform some of her performances as she played characters like Coffy and Foxy Brown. She told some funny stories about how she went method for an audition for a role in a Paul Newman film where she would play a hooker and on her way to the audition she was receiving cat calls from men, even getting hit on by a cop in a patrol car. She knew right then that she was going into the audition looking and acting the part and needless to say, she got the role. Grier also dropped a tidbit on an upcoming film based off of her life that is currently in the works. It didn’t sound like the actress playing her had been cast yet but Grier was hoping to have Quentin Tarantino direct the film. She also went on to say that may not happen since Tarantino is currently busy with Django Unchained and they are not going to wait on him to direct it since they hope to go into production in the fall.
Overall, I’d say that Horror Hound’s first venture to Columbus was a resounding success. I’d love to see them return to the city, maybe even finding a slightly bigger venue for the convention as it seemed pretty packed while I was there. It was a great way to meet horror legends and pick up some memorabilia along the way. I’d highly recommend checking out the show next time it comes to town or if you are in the Indianapolis area or feel like traveling, you can check out the next Horror Hound show going on Sept. 7-9, 2012. Stay tuned to the Horror Hound Weekend website once they update it with the new show’s details or you can follow them on Twitter @horrorhound.
To see some more photos from Horror Hound, check out the Monster Popcorn Facebook page here. For your viewing pleasure, I cut together a little faux movie trailer using some of the footage I shot at Horror Hound. Enjoy.