Monday, February 25, 2008

The Solution to Everything...

Today's first tidbit comes from artist Russell Walks - a design for a new Star Wars T-Shirt that I felt was worth sharing.

In other Star Wars news, Ralph McQuarrie was inducted into the 501st Legion today as an honorary member. There was a small ceremony at Lucasfilm's headquarters in the Presidio this morning, with Darth Vader and a few of his pals were in attendance. For those of you who don't know, the 501st is a charity focused organization of Star Wars fans who dress up in (primarily) Stormtrooper costumes. As Ralph was responsible for the original designs that led to those costumes, his induction was welcome, if long overdue.

See more pictures, and read all about it here on the Official Star Wars Blog.


Sunday, February 24, 2008

The Rising Sun

Last night's movie party morphed from a Dunsmuir Mansion focus to a Dan Curtis/Karen Black double, as we swapped out Phantasm for the Zuni Fetish sequence ("Amelia," based on Richard Matheson's short story Prey) from Trilogy of Terror.

The good news is that this clears the way for a full Phantasm Fest in 2009 for that films 30th Anniversary.

Yesterday at Wondercon, an official announcement was made for Star Wars Celebration Japan. Star Wars opened in Japan in June of 1978, so this year is their 30th Anniversary. Stan and I will be there representing Ralph McQuarrie in July - and we've got something in the works that we hope to announce soon. Here's the logo for the con:

Until next week...

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


A couple of things I wanted to share today - the first is sidewalk art outside of Toy Fair in New York. Note the image is stemming from the kid's imagination... I can't quite tell if he's playing with Star Wars toys or reading The Art of Ralph McQuarrie. It's a beautiful rendering of one of Ralph's most famous and beloved paintings.

Next up is our pal David J. Schow has a paperback original forthcoming from Hard Case Crime titled Gun Work. Interesting trivia - the cover to the new novel is by artist Joe DeVito, who exactly 20 years ago painted the cover to David's first novel, The Kill Riff. Check out the Hard Case Crime website to read an excerpt of Gun Work.

Finally, I wanted to share this mashup a pal at work forwarded to me: - Watch more free videos

Monday, February 18, 2008

Not as easy as it used to be...

Did you know that in a green band trailer, you can't point a gun at someone? That's why we saw this:
while the rest of the world saw this:
No need to lose any sleep, as the changes aren't in the film itself - just sanitized for the trailer audience. That said, if the film opens and all these soldiers are holding walkie-talkies, we're in trouble...

Look forward to the debut of the unaltered, international trailer in hi-definition at next week's movie party.


Friday, February 15, 2008

Dear Diary...

So I just got back from a midnight screening of George A. Romero's Diary of the Dead. Thanks to Kyle, we heard about this just in time to make it out to the Cameras downtown.

If you're concerned that uncle George has gone and shot himself a Blair Witch or Cloverfield knock-off, cast those doubts aside. Yes, the film is cut together from found footage, primarily that of a college filmmaker and his friends, supplemented with news reports and security footage. The good news for those who had trouble with the nature of those films, I doubt this would prey upon even the most sensitive viewers motion sickness.

The characters, in classic Romero form, are a love-em or hate-em bunch. The dead are plentiful and get plenty of opportunities to do their thing, and the scary bits are well balanced with moments of unparalleled Romero humor and pathos.

Romero has come full circle 40 years after the release of Night of the Living Dead, giving us a new perspective on the death of death - the phrase he coined to so accurately describe the undead phenomenon. Five films later and he's still not regurgitating his own ideas. Each has something new to say, and he always manages to find a fresh way to say it.

Also fun was listening for the audio cameos throughout, usually coming in the way of radio broadcasts or news reports. I won't spoil any here, although I'd be happy to compare notes once you've seen it. And I do need to see it again, as I realized later that I had missed some.

Oh, I won an "Untraceable" T-shirt and Return of the Living Dead: Rave to the Grave DVD in a trivia contest, which I will pass on to the first person who can answer the same question I did. In what city does the original Dawn of the Dead take place (and the answer they were looking for was city it was shot in, and to give you a hint, it's not Pittsburgh, like the first guy guessed).

A new Indiana Jones trailer and a new Romero dead flick, all in one day. Happy Valentine's Day everybody!


Thursday, February 14, 2008

Indy Trailer available NOW!

Head on over to to check it out!

I'm on my way to get in line.

See you Mayy 22, Dr. Jones.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Catch the Crystal Skull!

The first teaser trailer for Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull will debut on Good Morning America on Thursday morning between 8 and 9 AM, and will be available on shortly thereafter.

Monday, February 11, 2008

You fought in the Clone Wars?

The rumors have finally been confirmed. The new Star Wars: Clone Wars cartoon will debut theatrically on August 15th, with the series airing on the Cartoon Network and TNT. It's on the calendar - so rest assured we'll be there opening night (if not sooner). ;)

Not familiar with the new Clone Wars series? Check out the trailer that was released at Star Wars Celebration IV last summer. It's the continuing saga of the conflict in the galaxy that fell between episodes II and III. The stories will feature Anakin, Padme, Obi-Wan, Count Dooku, General Grievous, and a host of new characters.

And speaking of theatrical premieres - who's up for George Romero's Diary of the Dead this Friday?

Friday, February 8, 2008

Lego Twin Peaks

We have Martin to thank for this latest bit of ephemera. I will suggest that you don't watch it (yet) if you haven't seen the entire series, or if you've forgotten enough that you want to avoid any spoilers...

Grab a cup of Joe and enjoy...

Thursday, February 7, 2008

John Alvin 1948-2008

We were saddened to hear of John Alvin's passing yesterday. John's movie posters were very well known, even if his name was not. I had the pleasure of first meeting John at one of Stan's shows where John and Ralph McQuarrie were the guests of honor. When we saw him last summer at the Star Wars Celebration IV in Los Angeles, the seeds were planted for a book of John's art from dreams & visions press.

If you attended the Blade Runner/Alien movie party you may recall seeing John discuss his original poster artwork for Blade Runner.

Through his work, John has achieved immortality. Here are just a few reminders why he will never be forgotten.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008


We've made it through the first season of Twin Peaks, where the series truly was at it's peak, no pun intended. Not knowing whether or not they'd be renewed, Mark Frost, who wrote and directed the season finale, decided to ply a riff on the classic television cliffhanger by setting up every situation available: Cooper's been shot... Nadine has overdosed on pills... James has been arrested... Shelly is trapped in the mill fire... Lucy is pregnant with Andy's baby... Dr. Jacoby has had a heart attack... Ben Horne and daughter Audrey are about to have an unanticipated encounter at One Eyed Jacks... Leo's been shot... it appears that everyone is involved in some sort of double-cross... and isn't it the slightest bit odd that Laura's cousin Madeline looks and sounds exactly like her?

Classic television. In my opinion, as we embark on season two, it gets even better. There are some missteps, to be sure, and plotlines that would have been better off if abandoned, but within the next few weeks, we will enjoy some of the most harrowing moments in the history of television. We will come to know the evil Laura spoke of, feared, and perhaps became.

Remember - the owls are not what they seem.

Until next week-

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Right At Your Door

Just finished this interesting film I've been wanting to see since it played theatrically last year. Here's the skinny: Dirty bombs are detonated in downtown Los Angeles and a man seals off his house from the toxic chemicals. When his wife returns home, infected, he can't let her in.

Sounds like the premise of a great short film, and it turns out that was the director's original intention. Fortunately, in developing it at feature length, he came up with enough interesting moments to make it pay off. And while the downbeat ending is nowhere near as powerful as Frank Darabont's adaptation of Stephen King's The Mist, it certainly wasn't Hollywood cookie-cutter either. Worth checking out.

Last night I also finished off the last of the Dirty Harry series on the big screen, The Dead Pool. While a disappointing follow up to Sudden Impact, I did find myself appreciating Lalo Schifrin's score, which was contemporary and yet recalled themes from the original. I saw on the satellite schedule that the original is going to be on in HD. If you're interested in checking that out, let me know. Even though I've watched it on the big screen, I'm ready to do it again in HD.

See you at the 51,201 sign...