Kool Kat of the Week: Vanessa Ionta Wright Dishes on the Atlanta Debut of Her Film Short, RAINY SEASON, Screening at the Attack of the 50 Foot Film Fest at The Plaza Theatre

Posted on: Jun 21st, 2017 By:

by Melanie Crew
Managing Editor

Vanessa Ionta Wright, local filmmaker, co-founder and Director of the Women in Horror Film Festival, and horror aficionado helps dish out a night of terror, alongside fellow Atlanta indie filmmakers, with a screening of her short film, RAINY SEASON (2017), during the first ever Attack of the Fifty Foot Film Fest! Hosted by HORROR HOTEL producer and Kool Kat Debbie Hess, the fest features quality shorts created by local filmmakers (HORROR HOTEL episode “Sleep Tight” by Kool Kat Ricky Hess et al; ATTACK OF THE FACE MELTERS co-directed by Blake K. Swell and Tyler Weddle; and MR. LOCKJAW PREQUEL: EPISODE ONE directed by Byron Erwin)! So if you’re looking for a bloody fangtastic time and want to chat it up with some killer local filmmakers, make your way to The Plaza Theatre on June 27 at 7pm!

Wright, both writer and director of RAINY SEASON received full authorization by the King of Horror himself, Stephen King, to adapt his short story, “Rainy Season,” (first published in the Spring 1989 issue of MIDNIGHT GRAFFITI), into a live-action piece of bloody art, for the sole purpose of screening at film festivals in 2015. By way of King’s Dollar Babies program, Wright invested her blood, sweat and tears along with her WIHFF co-founder and Executive Producer Samantha Kolesnik and they are excited to bring the film to Atlanta’s horror film-loving audience!

ATLRetro caught up with Vanessa to chat about her film, the Attack of the Fifty Foot Film Fest, women in genre filmmaking and her upcoming Women in Horror Film Festival. While you’re takin’ a gander at our little Q&A, why not take a peek at RAINY SEASON’s official 2017 trailer, here.

ATLRetro: Attack of the 50 Foot Film Fest! Sounds exciting and right up ATLRetro’s alley! Can you tell us a little about the event, what inspired it, and how you got involved?

Vanessa Ionta Wright: The organizer of the event, Debbie Hess, wanted to put together a ‘mini’ fest of horror/sci-fi/suspense themed films produced by local Atlanta filmmakers that were either world premiere films or first time in Atlanta proper premieres. She wanted to curate a selection of quality indie films that would showcase and celebrate the talent and production capabilities of Atlanta filmmakers themselves. The world knows Atlanta as a premium destination for studio filmmaking with big budgets but Atlanta also has some excellent and creative filmmakers right here that can deliver the goods on an indie level as well. Collaborating with multiple filmmakers made it feasible to bring these short films to the big screen. The Plaza Theatre seemed the perfect venue with its historic background for such films. She put out a call to submit films for consideration. RAINY SEASON was a good fit.

Care to share a little about the other featured films and their directors?

I haven’t personally met any of them yet, but am very much looking forward to it, as well as seeing their films. Here is all the information I was able to gather with my spy skills: The Hesses (Ricky, Al and Debbie) produce the HORROR HOTEL series filmed in Atlanta. Ricky is the creator and primary director of the series with the first season streaming on Hulu, an anthology feature film of the 2nd season episodes which are available on Amazon Prime and coming soon to DirectTV. Their festival film, “Sleep Tight” is the pilot episode of the 3rd season and promises to creep it up with attack bed bugs! ATTACK OF THE FACE MELTERS, written by Blake K. Swell and co-directed by Tyler Weddle and Swell, features Jack, a lovable comic geek that enjoys his comics more than his girlfriend. Life takes a turn when Jack’s comic book comes to life. And LOCKJAW PREQUEL: Episode One, directed by Byron Conrad Erwin, written by Justin Craig, features a ventriloquist with mundane aspirations of becoming a children’s entertainer who becomes subject to his dummy’s more sinister desire: interrogating and torturing criminals for the mob.

We’re excited to see that your short film RAINY SEASON, adapted from Stephen King’s short story will be screening at the fest. Can you tell us a little about the film and the making of? Any interesting or crazy tales to tell about filming your short?

I feel like the entire experience from beginning to end has been crazy and interesting. I secured the non-exclusive rights back in July 2015 and began work on the script. Once the script was basically locked — I say basically because I was doing rewrites up until a day before shooting — I started putting together a team to get this sucker produced. I

Vanessa Ionta Wright

met Executive Producer Samantha Kolesnik at a film festival in Los Angeles and she was in the process of having her short film THE PRICE OF BONES (2016) produced and wanted to be more involved with production, so I asked if she wanted to jump on board RAINY SEASON.  She went from “Sure, I’ll help out,” to Executive Producer.  This film would not have happened without her. I then reached out to Director of Photography Mark Simon and was honored that he wanted to be a part of this project. Working alongside John Hughes, Mark began his career on some of the most iconic films in history (SIXTEEN CANDLES, THE BREAKFAST CLUB, FERRIS BUELLER’S DAY OFF). We were so lucky to be working with so many talents in this industry.

One of our biggest challenges, being on such a tight and small budget, was the fact that our set had no electricity or running water and we were shooting nights in an isolated location during the hottest days of August.  Thank goodness for generators, port-a-potties and a healthy respect for bats.

And how cool that your adaptation is fully authorized by King. Can you tell us a little about that process and how long it took for you to get King’s blessing?

This wasn’t as daunting as I thought it might be. The process was fairly simple. “Rainy Season” is part of King’s Dollar Babies Program, which allows aspiring filmmakers to secure the non-exclusive rights to his work and adapt it for the screen. I looked at the list of available stories and filled out an application and waited. Two weeks went by and I received an email granting me permission to adapt the story. I signed the contract and mailed my dollar bill to the “Master of Horror.”  The completed film can in no way make a profit or be distributed. It is for festival use only. So many people have asked, “Why on earth would you make a film that can’t be distributed or make any money?” I look at this film as a very expensive resume. I felt like this film could be a great opportunity for everyone involved to take the next step. Plus it doesn’t hurt to have Stephen King’s name on your film.

Behind the scenes – RAINY SEASON

Are there any other horror stories you’d like to adapt to film, those that have yet to hit the big screen?

I am always late to the party when it comes to reading. Generally, I’ll read a book and think, “That would make an awesome film!” and then I look it up and it’s already been done. I also read a lot of older books…I might need some book recommendations on new horror releases.

Can you tell our readers what drew you to filmmaking and which filmmakers would you say inspired you most?

I think I’ve been drawn to filmmaking my entire life, I just didn’t realize that it could be a career. I started writing stories at an early age, and the moment our family got a VHS movie camera I started bringing those stories to life. I have always been inspired by those who can take the seeds of an idea and grow it into a visual medium that can evoke an emotional response, be it laughter, tears or fear. I grew up on television and movies.  So much of it was still new. Premium cable television got popular in the early 1980s and I was front and center. I was always drawn to the scarier programs. I remember sneaking around to watch COMMANDER USA’s GROOVIE MOVIES and films like MY BLOODY VALENTINE , FRIDAY THE 13TH III, AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON, CAT PEOPLE and more. I was also an avid watcher of the early TWILIGHT ZONE series and the films of Alfred Hitchcock. I loved suspense more than anything. Gore was fun, but the anticipation of terror got me every time. And the horror of the 1970s and 1980s is so iconic. I watched films by John Carpenter, Wes Craven and Tobe Hooper and thought, “I want to do that!”

As an independent female filmmaker working in the horror genre, what challenges have you personally faced that seem to be a common theme amongst women in the industry?

I don’t know that I have faced any challenges in the industry due to being a woman. I think the challenges I have faced are common to all independent filmmakers regardless of gender. There is an audience for every film and I think as filmmakers we are all trying to find the most effective route to get our films in front of those audiences. Filmmaking is expensive, time consuming and extremely competitive. I think for years this industry has been dominated by men at the top, but we are seeing more and more women in these top creative and executive roles. And I certainly don’t think that I, or any other woman, should be given opportunities simply based on our gender. If I get hired as a director it should be because I am the best director for the job, not because I’m a good female director.

It seems that little by little, women are finally getting the attention they deserve when it comes to film, especially within the horror genre, which brings us to your Women in Horror Film Festival coming up in September. Can you give us a sneak peek into that venture and why you think it’s important that these types of events take place?

Samantha Kolesnik and I are very excited to be bringing this event to the Atlanta area. As genre filmmakers, we have noticed an unbalanced representation of women at horror film festivals and at the box office. We decided to create a platform to showcase female genre filmmakers and screenwriters. Not to create a women only event, but to promote those women who are currently creating films and screenplays and to get them noticed in an otherwise saturated market. We are striving for more equality in the industry, a balanced representation of talented filmmakers and writers. We are very excited to be welcoming some very special guests to the event that many horror fans will recognize: Heather Langenkamp, Amanda Wyss, Jen and Sylvia Soska, Horror Producer Marianne Maddalena, Lynn Lowry, Horror authors Mylo Carbia and Meg Hafdahl and famed zombie from AMC’s THE WALKING DEAD, Sonya Thompson.  These trailblazing women have been hugely supportive of what Samantha and I have created and we’re thrilled to be working alongside them. The festival will be accepting submissions through July 15, 2017, and the fest will take place September 21-24, 2017, at the Crowne Plaza Hotel & Conference Center in Peachtree City, just down the street from Pinewood Atlanta Studios and Raleigh Studios, home of THE WALKING DEAD.  Your readers can go here for more information.

Who are your favorite women horror directors and why?

Some of my favorites would be Kathryn Bigelow (NEAR DARK), Jennifer Kent (THE BABADOOK), Mary Lambert (PET SEMATARY), Mary Harron (AMERICAN PSYCHO). I am quickly becoming a fan of some amazing up and coming indie directors like Heidi Hartwig (WONDER VALLEY), Justine Raczkiewicz (WASTE) and Audrey Cummings (BERKSHIRE COUNTY). Why I like these particular directors? They know how to tell great stories. They are able to scare and disturb audiences while also creating thought provoking subject matter. I like them because they make great films. It’s why I like any director. I know I’m leaving people off of my list. I could create a spreadsheet of my favorite horror films and directors and you could offer a centerfold-type fold out for your readers. -Ha!-

Can you give us five things you’re into at the moment that we should be watching right now— past or present, well-known or obscure?

I love lists! I’m limited to only 5?! WATCHING: THE KEEPERS (Netflix Docuseries); MAKING A MURDERER (Netflix Docuseries); submissions for WIHFF – even though Sam and I are not judging the work, we are watching and enjoying all of the films, so that has been taking up a lot of my screen time; and some of my all time favorite films and TV shows in no particular order: RUSHMORE (Anderson), RAISING ARIZONA (Cohen Bros), HALLOWEEN (Carpenter), PSYCHO (Hitchcock), PULP FICTION (Tarantino), GOODFELLAS (Scorsese), A BRONX TALE (DeNiro), BACK TO THE FUTURE (Zemeckis), SLING BLADE (Thorton), ROCKY (Stallone), DIE HARD (McTierman), ALIEN (Scott). Series that I love and have loved:  THE WALKING DEAD, HEROES, BREAKING BAD, FRIDAY THE 13th the Series, AMAZING STORIES, STRANGER THINGS, GREATEST AMERICAN HERO, V, THE TWILIGHT ZONE, DARK SHADOWS, etc. There are so many more that I will remember after this is printed!

Any advice for women filmmakers out there trying to get their foot in the door?

This advice is for all filmmakers. Get out there and make your films. Find good talented people to work and collaborate with and get your film made.  There are so many resources for funding now. Get your hands on a good script or write one yourself and do it. There is no career in film without the film. And surround yourself with good, creative, talented people. You never know who you might meet, so network like crazy. Go to film festivals, get involved with the local indie film scene, and offer to help out on set even if you don’t get paid. Favors get repaid, so support each other, and treat your cast/crew with respect and kindness.

Getting back to what brought us here, Attack of the 50 Foot Film Fest! Anything exciting planned for fest-goers? Can we expect this to be an annual event, something we all can look forward to in years to come?

I’m not sure if this will become an annual event, but I do hope so! I love that Debbie Hess is giving an opportunity to local filmmakers to screen their films. This is about sharing our work. It’s not a competition and we are all there to cheer each other on and give audiences a chance to see some films they might not otherwise have the opportunity to see. And the Plaza is just a super cool venue, so much history there! Friends, fans and moviegoers will have the chance to meet the filmmakers and even the cast of some of these films, which is pretty exciting in my book.
And last but not least, what’s next for Vanessa Ionta Wright? Any other films in the works we should know about?

Right now I am enjoying the RAINY SEASON ride. It’s currently hitting festivals and I want to enjoy the success of the film before I jump into the next one. And WIHFF is keeping me pretty busy as it’s the first year! My plan is hopefully direct a feature in the next year or two so Samantha Kolesnik and I have been making a plan to make that happen. We are actually currently working on a screenplay together, which I am very excited about. I will be at the Attack of the 50ft Film Fest so please be sure to stop by and say hi, I love meeting people!

All photos courtesy of Vanessa Ionta Wright and used with permission.

 

Category: Kool Kat of the Week | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

This Week in ATLRetro – HOME-EDITION #4 – April 6-12, 2020

Posted on: Apr 6th, 2020 By:

by Melanie Crew
Managing Editor

We at ATLRetro care about your health and well-being, so This Week we are bringing you our fourth installment of our Home-Edition, a week’s worth of old-school fun you can experience straight from your couch! Want to know how to support our local artists, vendors and businesses? Scroll to the end of the calendar for a listing of creatives and how to support!

Monday Madness, April 6

The Plaza Theatre is now offering streaming for some of their films. For more information, go here! The Criterion Channel provides a 14-day free trial, so why not get comfy with the Criterion Collection here! Get down with today’s Nuncheon Session featuring a live-stream concert with Caitlin Anne Webster! Catch Eddie’s Attic’s Live Streaming Open Mic here! Rock out and tune into Kool Kat Rev. Andy Hawley’s Psychobilly Freakout Radio broadcasting on Garage 71 at 8pm, every Monday! The Metropolitan Opera is offering a Nightly Opera Stream. Click here for more information, including weekly schedule.

Tune It Up Tuesday, April 7

Get your Americana fix with Jason Waller as he delivers a Virtual House Concert hosted by Waller’s Coffee Shop at 2pm! Get down with today’s Nuncheon Session featuring a live-stream concert with the Heart Hunters! Local H rocks out with new album LIFERS out April 10! Catch their video “Hold That Thoughhere! Check out Aurora Theatre’s Digital Series 2020 featuring crafting, art, games and more, starting today! Garage rock it up with Kool Kat Rod Hamdallah and check out his online store here! The music community launches a high-profile global #loverecordstores initiative in order to mobilize artist support and encourage customers to shop online with their favorite independent record stores. Find out more here! Get rocked as WYLDLIFE drops their new single “Automatic” inspired by The Jesus and Mary Chain with their new album YEAR OF THE SNAKE Out April 17! We know you need your swingin’ Joe Gransden fix, so why not visit his site and catch a video or two of his, including him and his band swingin’ it up at Café 290, here!

Way Back Wednesday, April 8

Get down with today’s Nuncheon Session featuring a live-stream concert with Mercy Bell! Atlanta alt-country/indie rock band Nikki & The Phantom Callers releases debut LP, EVERYBODY’S GOING TO HELL (BUT YOU AND ME) out now! Check out their “Fallen Angel” video here! Check out Emory’s Carlos Museum’s “Carlos at Home” virtual exhibition tours and more. This week you’ll get a chance to experience artwork related to the Indian epic Ramayana! Check out the Birmingham Arts Journal here featuring stories, poems and art! Get “Hot Wired” with Kool Kat Spike Fullerton and Ghost Riders Car Club! Or boogie down with Kool Kat Hot Rod Walt & The Psycho DeVilles and their new album, RUMBLE ROAD now available for download and purchase!

Throwback Thursday, April 9

Atlanta Contemporary presents their exhibit “The Life and Death of Charles Williams” which can be virtually toured here. Get down with today’s Nuncheon Session featuring a live-stream concert with The Good Graces! Get the Chicago/Delta blues with The Breeze Kings and purchase their tunes and merchandise here! Celebrate Roger Corman’s birthday with a free viewing of Ballyhoo Motion Pictures’ (Kool Kat Daniel Griffith) short documentary, “Counter-Culture Cormanhere! Check out the Kennedy Center’s YouTube channel/digital stage here featuring concerts from Gladys Knight, Queen Latifah and more! The National Theatre is streaming a production a week, every Thursday, here, with tonight’s feature being JANE EYRE.

Fiercely Weird ‘n’ Fun Friday, April 10

Donita Sparks of L7 launches weekly “The Hi-Low Show with Donita Sparks” every Friday @ 3pm PT via “We Are Hear: On The Air” streaming network. MusiCares donations encouraged. Join the dynamic duo of Michelle Malone and Trish Land while they sing upbeat songs, crack bad jokes, and cook something up in their kitchen here at 7:30pm. Its “Pay what you can” with suggested donation of $20. Get musical with Andrew Lloyd Webber as he streams his musicals free online, every Friday, via his The Shows Must Go On YouTube channel here!  Wiretap Records has announced a month-long live stream series, The Wiretap Records Family Vacation Live Stream Series, that will span over the month April 10 – May 1.  Get down with today’s Nuncheon Session featuring a live-stream concert with Nathan Kalish! Jeff Beam releases new single, “Think Twice, It’s Not Alright,” from self-titled LP out April 17th. Also, check out the first tune on the album, “Stephen King!” Or garage rock it up with The Bobby Lees’ Bo Diddley cover of “I’m a Man” here while waiting for their new album SKIN SUIT to be released in May 2020, produced by legendary Jon Spencer! The Center for Puppetry Arts is live-streaming performances and providing workshops on line via their website for free here! Hey parents! Check out the Children’s Museum of Atlanta’s virtual learning program #CMAatHome, featuring story time, singing and more!

Spooktastic Saturday, April 11


ELZIG, The Demon Elvis rocks your face, so why not get hellacious with him here! Hey all you home-bound horror fans! The Winchester Mystery House is offering virtual tours here! Horror punk it up with Kool Kats, The Casket Creatures and check out their official video for “The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb!” Check it out here! Creature Feature it up and stream Merian C. Cooper’s KING KONG (1933) on Amazon Prime! Check out local independent horror filmmakers, Kool Kat Dayna Noffke and Kool Kat Vanessa Ionta Wright!

Sci-Fi ‘n’ more Sunday, April 12

Sword & Soul it up by supporting Sorghum & Spear and catch an interview with the one and only Nichelle Nichols here! Check out the ‘80s progressive-esque, The ButtertonesJAZZHOUND out now, with single “Phantom Eyes” and video “Fade Away Gently” available to stream! Get space rocked with Big Black Delta’s new music video “Summonerhere!

 

Help support our local businesses and artists (A-Z Listing)

 *Check out 7 Stages’ YouTube channel here to live stream, and while you’re at it, purchase a gift certificate or two to help now and see art later here!
*A Cappella Books – Join their VIP discount and membership club (A Cappella Choir), which provides a 10% discount and priority seating at author events and more. Members who would like to purchase anything online can do so by sending them your list via email or by phone order at (404) 681-5128. All choir members are eligible for free home delivery! Find out more and join here.
*Get monsterific and check out Monsterama’s Kool Kat Anthony Taylor’s Etsy page, Pop Kulture Vulture!
*Atlanta Science-Fiction & Fantasy Expo 2020 had to cancel/postpone (we’ll post their new dates when they announce) but you can still support their authors, artists & vendors at their Virtual Market!
*Browse and purchase your favorite books and more at Atlanta Vintage Books!
*Why not check out our Kool Kat Derek Yaniger’s art and creator of our ATLRetro logo!
*Dirk Hays, purveyor of all that is monstrous and weird, makes art, so why not check out Art by Dirk!
*Geek it up and check out Dr. No’s Comics & Games Superstore (online store here) in Marietta offering gift certificates which can be purchased over the phone for later use and curbside pick-up!
*The Earl Smith Strand Theatre – Help support them here.
*Help support the staff at Eddie’s Attic by contributing to their GoFundMe here.
*Jonathan Chaffin’s Horror in Clay, offers tiki mugs filling your every monster madness need!
*Check out Jeanne the Maskmaker’s Etsy page here!
*Get your vintage jewelry fix with Jezebel Blue and your retro style fix with 2the9s Retro!
*Kyle Yaklin gets creaturific with his creature masks and more!
*Landmark’s Midtown Art Theatre – Support by purchasing gift cards for future use here.
*Support the employees of the Masquerade via their GoFundMe here!
*The Plaza Theatre – Support by either purchasing vouchers for future events here, or by supporting their Go Fund Me here, or you can donate or become a member of The Plaza Theatre Foundation.
*Kool Kat Shane Morton,  and Silver Scream FX Lab offers one hellacious merch store with monster masks, art and more!

Category: This Week in ATLRetro | TAGS: None

This Week in ATLRetro – HOME-EDITION #3 – March 30-April 5, 2020

Posted on: Mar 30th, 2020 By:

by Melanie Crew
Managing Editor

We at ATLRetro care about your health and well-being, so This Week we are bringing you our third installment of our Home-Edition, a week’s worth of old-school fun you can experience straight from your couch!

Monday Madness, March 30

Join A Cappella Books’ VIP discount and membership club, the A Cappella Choir, which provides a 10% discount, plus you will receive priority seating at author events and regularly extend exclusive invitations to author meet & greets. Members who would like to purchase anything you see online can do so by sending them your list via email or by phone order at (404) 681-5128. All choir members are eligible for free home delivery! Find out more and join here. You can support The Plaza Theatre by either purchasing vouchers for future events here, or by supporting their Go Fund Me here, or you can donate or become a member of The Plaza Theatre Foundation! Help support The Earl Smith Strand Theatre in Marietta here. Or you can support Landmark’s Midtown Art Theatre by purchasing gift cards for future use here. The Criterion Channel provides a 14-day free trial, so why not get comfy with the Criterion Collection here! Rock out and tune into Kool Kat Rev. Andy Hawley’s Psychobilly Freakout Radio broadcasting on Garage 71 at 8pm, every Monday!

Tune It Up Tuesday, March 31

Garage rock it up with Kool Kat Rod Hamdallah and check out his online store here! The music community launches a high-profile global #loverecordstores initiative in order to mobilize artist support and encourage customers to shop online with their favorite independent record stores. Find out more here! Zachery Allan Starkey and New Order’s Bernard Sumner deliver “Force” online here! His new LP FEAR CITY featuring collaborations with Sumner will be out April 30! Garage rock it up with Glasgow’s Catholic Action who are releasing their new album CELEBRATED BY STRANGERS (order here) on Palo Santo Records. Check out their dynamic album single “I’m No Artist.” Get rocked as WYLDLIFE drops their new single “Automatic” inspired by The Jesus and Mary Chain with their new album YEAR OF THE SNAKE Out April 17! We know you need your swingin’ Joe Gransden fix, so why not visit his site and catch a video or two of his, including him and his band swingin’ it up at Café 290, here! Get rocked with Static Cycle’s new music video “Wolfhere!

Way Back Wednesday, April 1

Check out Emory’s Carlos Museum’s “Carlos at Home” virtual exhibition tours and more. This week you’ll get a chance to experience artwork related to the Indian epic Ramayana! Browse and purchase your favorite books and more at Atlanta Vintage Books! Check out the Birmingham Arts Journal here featuring stories, poems and art! Get “Hot Wired” with Kool Kat Spike Fullerton and Ghost Riders Car Club! Or boogie down with Kool Kat Hot Rod Walt & The Psycho DeVilles and their new album, RUMBLE ROAD now available for download and purchase!

Throwback Thursday, April 2

Get psychedelic with ‘60s garage rock’esque High Waisted’s new LP coming to your ears May 22 and catch their single “Drive” while you wait! Atlanta Contemporary presents their exhibit “The Life and Death of Charles Williams” which can be virtually toured here. Get your ‘80s fix as The Story Changes unveils their new animated music video for their song “Golden Agehere. Mark Lanegan, a.k.a. Kid Eastwood, shares his new track “Bleed All Over” from his new album STRAIGHT SONGS OF SORROW due out in May 2020! Check outGeek it up and check out Dr. No’s Comics & Games Superstore (online store here) in Marietta offering gift certificates which can be purchased over the phone for later use and curbside pick-up! Help support the staff at Eddie’s Attic by contributing to their GoFundMe here. Get the Chicago/Delta blues with The Breeze Kings and purchase their tunes and merchandise here!

Fiercely Weird ‘n’ Fun Friday, April 3

Jeff Beam releases new single, “Think Twice, It’s Not Alright,” from self-titled LP out April 17th. Also, check out the first tune on the album, “Stephen King!” Skank it up with Ska/Pop/Punk band Bite Me Bambi, featuring members Save Ferris, Starpool and more! Check out their music video to “Hot Lava” here! Or garage rock it up with The Bobby Lees’ Bo Diddley cover of “I’m a Manhere while waiting for their new album SKIN SUIT to be released in May 2020, produced by legendary Jon Spencer! The Center for Puppetry Arts is live-streaming performances and providing workshops on line via their website for free here! Hey parents! Check out the Children’s Museum of Atlanta’s virtual learning program #CMAatHome, featuring story time, singing and more! Check out 7 Stages’ YouTube channel here to live stream, and while you’re at it, purchase a gift certificate or two to help now and see art later here!

Spooktastic Saturday, April 4

ELZIG, The Demon Elvis rocks your face, so why not get hellacious with him here! Hey all you home-bound horror fans! The Winchester Mystery House is offering virtual tours here! Kool Kat Shane Morton,  and Silver Scream FX Lab offers one hellacious merch store with monster masks, art and more! Horror punk it up with Kool Kats, The Casket Creatures and check out their official video for “The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb!” Check it out here! Kyle Yaklin gets creaturific with his creature masks and more! Or check out Jonathan Chaffin’s Horror in Clay, offering tiki mugs filling your every monster madness need! Creature Feature it up and stream Merian C. Cooper’s KING KONG (1933) on Amazon Prime! Check out local independent horror filmmakers, Kool Kat Dayna Noffke and Kool Kat Vanessa Ionta Wright!

Sci-Fi, Shoppin’ ‘n’ more Sunday, April 5

Atlanta Science-Fiction & Fantasy Expo 2020 had to cancel/postpone (we’ll post their new dates when they announce) but you can still support their authors, artists & vendors at their Virtual Market! Get space rocked with Big Black Delta’s new music video “SummonerhereDirk Hays, purveyor of all that is monstrous and weird, makes art, so why not check out Art by Dirk! Or get monsterific and check out Monsterama’s Kool Kat Anthony Taylor’s Etsy page, Pop Kulture Vulture! Get your vintage jewelry with Jezebel Blue and your retro style fix with 2the9s Retro! Why not check out our Kool Kat Derek Yaniger, and creator of our ATLRetro logo! Or make your way to Jeanne the Maskmaker’s Etsy page here!

Category: This Week in ATLRetro | TAGS: None

This Week in ATLRetro – HOME-EDITION #2 – March 23-29, 2020

Posted on: Mar 22nd, 2020 By:

by Melanie Crew
Managing Editor

We at ATLRetro care about your heath and well-being, so This Week we are bringing you our second installment of our Home-Edition, a week’s worth of retro-tastic fun you can experience straight from your couch!

Movie Madness Monday & More, March 23

Kool Kat James Bickert is sharing the exploitation love as he streams FRANKENSTEIN CREATED BIKERS (2016) for FREE here! Help support our local theatres! You can support The Plaza Theatre by either purchasing vouchers for future events here, or by supporting their Go Fund Me here, or you can donate or become a member of The Plaza Theatre Foundation! Help support The Earl Smith Strand Theatre in Marietta here. Or you can support Landmark’s Midtown Art Theatre by purchasing gift cards for future use here. The Criterion Channel provides a 14-day free trial, so why not get comfy with the Criterion Collection here! Experience the mystical arts of Tibet during the Green Tara Mandala Sand Painting Livestream, through March 27! Get your Americana fix and live stream Eddie’s Attic’s Chris Knight show here! Find out who the real monster is in Jack Smight’s FRANKENSTEIN: THE TRUE STORY (1973) streaming on Amazon Prime! Rock out and tune into Kool Kat Rev. Andy Hawley’s Psychobilly Freakout Radio broadcasting on Garage 71 at 8pm, every Monday! Or horror punk it up with Kool Kats, The Casket Creatures and check out their official video for “The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb!” Dirk Hays, purveyor of all this is monstrous and weird, makes art, so why not check out Art by Dirk!

Tune It Up Tuesday, March 24

Kool Kat Jeffrey Butzer has released a new EP PARTIALISMS which can be purchased here. Rock with The Ramones and stream Allan Arkush/Joe Dante’s ROCK ‘N’ ROLL HIGH SCHOOL (1979) via Hulu, Vudu, Amazon Prime and more, or purchase the 40th Anniversary edition here which includes a documentary [CLASS OF ’79: 40 YEARS OF ROCK ‘N’ ROLL HIGH SCHOOL] by Atlanta’s Kool Kat Daniel Griffith of Ballyhoo Motion Pictures! Get rocked with Lucky Boys Confusion’s 1998 debut album GROWING OUT OF IT as it is rereleased on vinyl on April 10 and is available for pre-order here. Experience the mystical arts of Tibet during the Green Tara Mandala Sand Painting Livestream, through March 27! The Once & Future Band rocks out with their new album DELETED SCENES out April 10! Catch their album teaser here. Get down as Shamir releases a new album, CATACLYSM streaming on Bandcamp now, here! We know you need your swingin’ Joe Gransden fix, so why not visit his site and catch a video or two of his, including him and his band swingin’ it up at Café 290, here! Check out our Retro Review of The BeatlesA HARD DAYS’ NIGHT (1964), also streaming on Amazon Prime, Vudu, YouTube and more!

Way Back Wednesday, March 25

Get down with Robyn Hitchcock as he delivers a free (donations requested) quarantine concert live streaming at 5pm here! Browse and purchase your favorite books and more at Atlanta Vintage Books! Experience the mystical arts of Tibet during the Green Tara Mandala Sand Painting Livestream, through March 27! Every episode of THE FRENCH CHEF with Julia Child is streaming on Amazon Prime and PBS! Check out some foot-stompin’ in-home entertainment! Get “Hot Wired” with Kool Kat Spike Fullerton and Ghost Riders Car Club! Or boogie down with Kool Kat Hot Rod Walt & The Psycho DeVilles and their new album, RUMBLE ROAD now available for download and purchase!

Throwback Thursday, March 26

Geek it up and check out Dr. No’s Comics & Games Superstore (online store here) in Marietta offering gift certificates which can be purchased over the phone for later use and curbside pick-up! Check out Kool Kat Michael Stark and Terrell Garret’s second issue of WOLVERTON: THIEF OF IMPOSSIBLE OBJECTS via their shoppe here! Help support the staff at Eddie’s Attic by contributing to their GoFundMe here. Experience the mystical arts of Tibet during the Green Tara Mandala Sand Painting Livestream, through March 27! Get the Chicago/Delta blues with The Breeze Kings and purchase their tunes and merchandise here! Experience the mystical arts of Tibet during the Green Tara Mandala Sand Painting Livestream, through March 27!

Fiercely Weird ‘n’ Fun Friday, March 27

The Center for Puppetry Arts is live-streaming performances and providing workshops on line via their website for free here! Hey parents! Check out the Children’s Museum of Atlanta’s virtual learning program #CMAatHome, featuring story time, singing and more! Check out 7 Stages’ YouTube channel here to live stream, and while you’re at it, purchase a gift certificate or two to help now and see art later here! It’s your last chance to experience the mystical arts of Tibet during the Green Tara Mandala Sand Painting Livestream!

Spooktastic Saturday, March 28

Hey all you home-bound horror fans! The Winchester Mystery House is offering virtual tours here! Kool Kat Shane Morton,  and Silver Scream FX Lab offers one hellacious merch store with monster masks, art and more! Check it out here! Kyle Yaklin gets creaturific with his creature masks and more! Or check out Jonathan Chaffin’s Horror in Clay, offering tiki mugs filling your every monster madness need! Creature Feature it up and stream Merian C. Cooper’s KING KONG (1933) on Amazon Prime! Check out local independent horror filmmakers, Kool Kat Dayna Noffke and Kool Kat Vanessa Ionta Wright!

Sci-Fi, Shoppin’ ‘n’ more Sunday, March 29

Atlanta Science-Fiction & Fantasy Expo 2020 had to cancel/postpone (we’ll post their new dates when they announce) but you can still support their authors, artists & vendors at their Virtual Market! Or get monsterific and check out Monsterama’s Kool Kat Anthony Taylor’s Etsy page, Pop Kulture Vulture! Get your vintage jewelry with Jezebel Blue and your retro style fix with 2the9s Retro! Why not check out our Kool Kat Derek Yaniger, and creator of our ATLRetro logo! Or make your way to Jeanne the Maskmaker’s Etsy page here!

Category: This Week in ATLRetro | TAGS: None

This Week in ATLRetro – HOME-EDITION, March 16-22, 2020

Posted on: Mar 15th, 2020 By:

by Melanie Crew
Managing Editor

We at ATLRetro care about your heath and well-being, so This Week we are bringing you our special Home-Edition celebrating our own local artists, musicians, filmmakers and more – a week’s worth of retro-tastic fun you can experience straight from your couch!

Monster Madness Monday, March 16

Find out who the real monster is in Jack Smight’s FRANKENSTEIN: THE TRUE STORY (1973) streaming on Amazon Prime! Or get monsterific and check out Monsterama’s Kool Kat Anthony Taylor’s Etsy page, Pop Kulture Vulture! Rock out and tune into Kool Kat Rev. Andy Hawley’s Psychobilly Freakout Radio broadcasting on Garage 71 at 8pm, every Monday! Or horror punk it up with Kool Kats, The Casket Creatures and check out their official video for “The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb!” Dirk Hays, purveyor of all this is monstrous and weird, makes art, so why not check out Art by Dirk!

Tune It Up Tuesday, March 17


Kool Kat Jeffrey Butzer has released a new EP PARTIALISMS which can be purchased here. In honor of Genesis P-Orridge, check out Throbbing Gristle, or their great live performance of “Hamburger Lady!” We know you need your swingin’ Joe Gransden fix, so why not visit his site and catch a video or two of his, including him and his band swingin’ it up at Café 290, here! Check out our Retro Review of The BeatlesA HARD DAYS’ NIGHT (1964), also streaming on Amazon Prime, Vudu, YouTube and more!

 

Way Back Wednesday, March 18

Check out some foot-stompin’ in-home entertainment! Get “Hot Wired” with Kool Kat Spike Fullerton and Ghost Riders Car Club! Or boogie down with Kool Kat Hot Rod Walt & The Psycho DeVilles and their new album, RUMBLE ROAD now available for download and purchase! Like old-school film? Why not check out the AV Club’s cool article on 20th Century Flicks! While Emory Cinematheque had to cancel their African-Americans in American Film Series screening of Julie Dash’s DAUGHTERS OF THE DUST (1991), you can catch it streaming on Amazon Prime!

Throwback Thursday, March 19


Alice Bag announces new album, SISTER DYNAMITE due out April 24 on In The Red Records /Video! Check out rule-bending, award-winning author and Kool Kat Nancy A. Collins and purchase her books here! Alt-country it up with Drive-By Truckers’ new LP THE UNRAVELING which arrived via ATO Records and released Friday, January 31! Watch “ARMAGEDDON’S BACK IN TOWN!” Get the Chicago/Delta blues with The Breeze Kings and purchase their tunes and merchandise here! Or check out the ‘80s progressive-esque, The ButtertonesJAZZHOUND!

 

Fiercely Weird ‘n’ Vintage Friday, March 20

Check out 7 Stages’ YouTube channel here to live stream, and while you’re at it, purchase a gift certificate or two to help now and see art later here! Get your vintage jewelry with Jezebel Blue and your retro style fix with 2the9s Retro! Check out our Retro Review of Dario Argento’s DEEP RED (1975), and stream it on Amazon Prime! Want some cool vintage art? Why not check out our Kool Kat Derek Yaniger, and creator of our ATLRetro logo! Or for some Weird words, check out author and Kool Kat Michael Wehunt! Check out our Retro Review of Frank Pavich’s JODOROWSKY’S DUNE (2013), and stream it at Amazon Prime, Vudu, YouTube and more! Or check out Kool Kat Daniel Griffith’s Ballyhoo Motion Pictures for his long list of DVD/Blu-ray extras and documentaries!

Spooktastic Saturday, March 21

Shane Morton – Silver Scream FX Lab

Kool Kat Shane Morton,  and Silver Scream FX Lab offers one hellacious merch store with monster masks, art and more! Check it out here! Kyle Yaklin gets creaturific with his creature masks and more! Or check out Jonathan Chaffin’s Horror in Clay, offering tiki mugs filling your every monster madness need! Creature Feature it up and stream Merian C. Cooper’s KING KONG (1933) on Amazon Prime! Check out Lynne Hansen’s art featuring book covers for horror writers and more! Or take a gander at our Retro Review of Michael J. Paradise’s THE VISITOR (1979), filmed in Atlanta, and streaming at Amazon Prime, Vudu and more! Check out local independent horror filmmakers, Kool Kat Dayna Noffke and Kool Kat Vanessa Ionta Wright!


Sci-Fi, Shoppin’ ‘n’ more Sunday, March 22

Sci-fi it up this Sunday and check out our RETRO REVIEW of Robert Wise’s THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL (1951), stream available at Amazon Prime! Looking for some rare spooky jewelry and more? Why not check out Kool Kat Aileen Loy’s Lovely Hoodoo, or Rebecca Perry’s DeathKiss Designs, or Crystal ChambersBleeding Heart Curio! Hiromi Kanda, Japanese vocalist Who Keeps Alive the Great American Songbook, releases SEVEN ELEGANT BALLADS!

Category: This Week in ATLRetro | TAGS: None

This Week in ATLRetro, Feb. 24 – March 1, 2020

Posted on: Feb 23rd, 2020 By:

by Melanie Crew
Managing Editor

Shake a tail feather and come see what we’ve dug up for you This Week in ATLRetro!

Monday, February 24

Swing on by the Georgia Ensemble Theatre & Conservatory for Joe Gransden’s Big Band Concert Series! Don’t forget to catch the tail end of the 20th Annual Atlanta Jewish Film Festival running through Feb. 27 at venues across Atlanta! Get funky and groove on down to Café 290 every second and fourth Monday of the month for a taste of Bumpin the Mango, ‘The groove that makes you want to move!” Rock out and tune into Kool Kat Rev. Andy Hawley’s Psychobilly Freakout Radio broadcasting on Garage 71 at 8pm, every Monday! Get your vinyl fix at Little 5 Points Corner Tavern’s Records of Mass Destruction, every Monday! Boogie on down to the Northside Tavern and spend an evening with Lola at her famous Monday Night Northside Jam! And blues on down to Fat Matt’s Rib Shack for a side of Dry White Toast and a plate full ‘o finger lickin’ BBQ!

Tuesday, February 25

Make your way to Landmark Midtown Art Cinema as they continue another killer Classics Series with a screening of Bob Rafelson’s FIVE EASY PIECES (1970) at 7pm! Get your party on at Blind Willie’s at their Mardi Gras Party featuring The Atlanta Crawdaddy’s! It’s Mardi Gras Madness at The Vista Room with Funk Cake & Fermentable Friends featuring The Black Sheep Ensemble, Tray Dahl (Jugtime Ragband) and more! Get rocked with the Mikey Erg Band, The Slow Death and more at The Earl! Get the rockin’ blues with the Crosstown Allstars at Fat Matt’s Rib Shack! Jam it up with Joe Gransden and his jazz jam session at Venkman’s! Hula on down to Waller’s Coffee Shop for a Ukulele Jam! And as always, groove on down with Swami Gone Bananas at the Northside Tavern!

Wednesday, February 26

Get rocked at 529 with Wildstreet, Voltage, JONNY D and Heretica! Make your way to the Carter Center for a night with Erik Larson (THE DEVIL IN THE WHITE CITY) discussing his newest book, THE SPLENDID AND THE VILE! Get down with the Francisco Vidal Band and Daniel Toole at Eddie’s Attic! Get psychedelic with Howlin’ Rain, Sunwatchers and A Tower to the Stars at The Earl! Get criminal and catch a screening of Francis Ford Coppola’s THE GODFATHER (1972) at theatres across Atlanta [Northlake Festival Movie Tavern (Tucker); GTC Merchant’s Walk Cinemas (Marietta); Movie Tavern at Horizon Village (Suwannee); and The Springs Cinema & Taphouse (Sandy Springs)! Emory Cinematheque continues their African-Americans in American Film Series with a screening of Taylor Hackford’s AN OFFICER AND A GENTLEMAN (1982) at 7:30pm in White Hall 208! The Highlander rocks out with their Punk/Metal/New Wave Karaoke Night, every Wednesday! Get jazzy at the Red Light Café with The Gordon Vernick Quartet! Funk it up with the Mike Veal Band at Tin Roof Cantina! Or make your way to the Northside Tavern for a rockin’ night of blues with the Tyler Neal Band! Get the blues with Frankie’s Blues Mission at Fat Matt’s Rib Shack! And as always, it’s Ladies Night at Johnny’s Hideaway which plays hits from Sinatra to Madonna for a generally mature crowd.

Thursday, February 27

Take a walk down the “Dead Carpet” for the 4th annual Women in Horror Film Festival founded by Festival Directors Kool Kat Vanessa Ionta Wright (RAINY SEASON) and Samantha Kolesnik, killing it through Feb 29 at the The Earl Smith Strand Theater in Marietta. You won’t want to miss a horrorific lineup of shorts and feature-length films, vendors and special guests including Heather Langenkamp (A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET), Amanda Wyss (A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET), Adam Marcus (JASON GOES TO HELL), Marianne Maddalena (SCREAM; THE HILLS HAVE EYES) and more! Stomp on down to The Earl for a night with the Country Westerns, Teddy & The Rough Riders and Sunset Pig! Or Beer & Lounge it up at the Clermont Lounge with Chrome Castle and Metal McDonald! The Northside Tavern gets rockin’ with a little Chicago/Delta blues of The Breeze Kings! Get your boogie on at Fat Matt’s Rib Shack, as Chickenshack delivers some honky-tonk blues! And as always, boogie down at Mary’s, as the East Atlanta venue gets funky with their weekly Disco in the Village.

Friday, February 28

It’s Day 2 of the Women in Horror Film Festival, so come on down and get your horror fix with a helluva line-up of killer films! Haunt on down to The Highlander for a night with El Capitan, Kool Kats The Casket Creatures, Captain  & Maybelle and more! Get rocked at The Earl during their Winter Weekender ATL through March 1! Make your way to the Out Front Theatre Company for In Vibrant Color: Celebrating Queer Black Cinema featuring a screening of Dee ReesBESSIE (2015), which explores the life of Bessie Smith, and more! Rock out at The Vista Room with The Spirit of Rush and Pink Zeppelin! Get the rockin’ blues with Joe Bonamassa at The Fox Theatre! Get on down to Buteco for FLASHBACK FRIDAY featuring a night of global 80s, 90s and 2o00s videos! Rockabilly it up with Slim & The Gems at Motorheads! Get funky with The Motet at Terminal West! Time-Warp it up at The Plaza Theater as they continue their tradition of screening THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW (1975) every Friday night, featuring the live cast of Lips Down on Dixie at midnight!

Saturday, February 29

It’s your last chance to get terror-fied at the Women in Horror Film Festival, so come on out and get horrorfied with screenings of Stacey Palmer’s “Toothache,” Viva Tolar’s “Killer Kids,” (Kool Kat Dayna Noffke’s daughter) and more! Get rocked at The Earl during night 2 of Winter Weekender ATL through March 1! Just Roxie (formerly Roxie Watson) gets down at Eddie’s Attic! Get the rockin’ blues with Joe Bonamassa for a second night at The Fox Theatre! The Vista Room celebrates Capricorn Records with their Capricorn Record Revue featuring Chris Hicks (Marshall Tucker Band), Tommy Talton (Greg Allman Band), Bill Stewart (Greg Allman Band), Mike Veal and more! Get funky with The Motet for a second night at Terminal West! Boogie down to The Highlander for Destination Unknown – ‘80s New Wave Dance Party! Get adventurous and catch a matinee of Randal Kleiser’s BIG TOP PEE WEE (1988) at The Plaza Theater at 1pm! Blues rock it up with The Trouble Tones at Fat Matt’s Rib Shack! And as always, DJ Romeo Cologne and DJ Kwasi Mandisco transforms the sensationally seedy Clermont Lounge into a ’70s disco/funk inferno late into the wee hours of the night.

Sunday, March 1

Get thrilled with a screening of Alfred Hitchcock’s NORTH BY NORTHWEST (1959) at theatres across Atlanta [Northlake Festival Movie Tavern (Tucker); GTC Merchant’s Walk Cinemas (Marietta); Movie Tavern at Horizon Village (Suwannee); and The Springs Cinema & Taphouse (Sandy Springs)! Beyond the Yellow Brick Road pays tribute to Elton John at The Vista Room! Get rocked at The Earl during day 3 of Winter Weekender ATL! Get the blues with Jet Black at Fat Matt’s Rib Shack! Funk it up with Risky Biscuit at Tin Roof Cantina! Get sweet and low down blues-style at the Northside Tavern with Uncle Sugar!

Ongoing

The Atlanta Jewish Film Festival celebrates its 20th Anniversary and kicks off tonight, running through Feb. 27 at venues across Atlanta! (LAST CHANCE!)

The Children’s Museum of Atlanta presents their Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Secrets of the Sewer exhibit, kicking tail through May 10!

New-Wave it up with Kool Kat VJ Anthony during an 80s New Wave Music Video Dance Party every 2nd Saturday of the month at Amsterdam Atlanta!

Have a deadly good time during Kool Kat VJ Anthony’s COFFIN CLASSICS: Goth Industrial Dance every 4th Saturday at Amsterdam Atlanta!

Geek it up as NerdLanta presents their Back to the ‘80s Movie Night, every third Thursday of the month, at Mother Bar+Kitchen!

ATL CRAFT presents a magical occult Movie Night every second Friday of every month!

My Parents’ Basement goes old-school with their monthly Pinball Tournament, every first Wednesday of the month!

Geek it up and get to bowlin’ at The Comet Pub & LanesComet Cosplay, getting nerdy the first Monday of every month!

Dad’s Garage’s Big Boozy Nerdy Game Night brings out the kid in you, every first Monday of the month at 7pm! 

Union EAV rocks out with their Punk Rock Karaoke ATL, and every last Tuesday of the month!

The Highlander rocks out with their Punk/Metal/New Wave Karaoke Night, every Wednesday!

Get your vinyl fix during Little 5 Points Corner Tavern’s Records of Mass Destruction! event, every Monday!

Geek it up at My Parents’ Basement with their weekly Tuesday night Nerd Trivia at 8pm!

Nerd Film Mafia screenings at the Diesel Filling Station following NerdCore Trivia, every last Tuesday of the month!

The Plaza Theater Time-Warps it up as they screen, THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW (1975) every Friday night, featuring the live cast of Lips Down on Dixie at midnight!

Get your reggae fix with Rub-A-Dub gettin’ down at WildPitch Music Hall, every second Sunday of the month!

Every first and third Mondays are Big Band Nights at Café 290, featuring Joe Gransden and his amazing 16-piece orchestra playing jazz and swing standards in the tradition of The Glen Miller Orchestra and other legendary groups.  Second and fourth Mondays are Bumpin the Mango, ‘The groove that makes you want to move!’

Every first Wednesday is the Graveyard Tavern’s Graveyard Swing Night, featuring the swingin’ jazz and boogie-woogie sounds of the Savoy Kings!

If you have a suggestion for a future event that should be included in This Week in Retro Atlanta or see something we missed, please email us at atlretro@gmail.com.

Category: This Week in ATLRetro, Uncategorized | TAGS: None

Ten Terrifying Reasons Not to Miss Days of the Dead Atlanta 2020

Posted on: Feb 3rd, 2020 By:

By Rebecca Perry
Contributing Writer

Get traumatized and HORRORfied this weekend as the Days of the Dead Convention kills it at the Sheraton Atlanta hotel for three days of ghastly gore-filled events, running February 7-9, 2020! Here are our Top 10 Terrifying Retro Reasons not to miss this years’ spooky shindig:

1) THE CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON! Don’t miss one helluva opportunity to meet the last surviving Universal Monsters icon – Ricou Browning! Ricou portrayed the title character in 1954’s THE CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON, THE RETURN OF THE CREATURE and THE CREATURE WALKS AMONG US. In addition to photo-ops and autograph signings, you can hear Ricou talk about his Creature days on Sunday at 1:00 p.m.

2) TELEVISION’S ADAMS FAMILY ALUM! Get spooky with Lisa Loring, television’s Wednesday Adams! You won’t want to miss The Adams Family Panel featuring Lisa with Felix Silla, a.k.a. Cousin Itt, Friday night at 7pm!

3) GHOULISH GUESTS! This year’s DotD is playing host to a monsterific guest list! Richard Dreyfuss (JAWS, CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND), Kathleen Turner (SERIAL MOM, WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT?), John Cusack (THE RAVEN, BETTER OFF DEAD), Tony Todd (CANDYMAN, WISHMASTER), Michael Biehn (THE TERMINATOR, ALIENS), Doug Jones (HELLBOY, PAN’S LABYRINTH, THE SHAPE OF WATER) and Linda Blair (THE EXORCIST) are just a few of the stars you can expect to see this weekend.

4) RETRO REUNIONS! Not only are we getting a SLEEPAWAY CAMP franchise reunion featuring cast members Jarret Beal, Heather Binton, Kendall Bran, Carol Chambers, Amy Fields, Kyle Holman, Mark Oliver and Jill Terashita, but we’re ALSO getting a NIGHT OF THE DEMONS reunion featuring director Kevin Tenney, Amelia Kinkade, Linnea Quigley, Hal Havins, Jill Terashita and Lance Fenton. PLUS Rob Zombie‘s HALLOWEEN reunion featuring Tyler Mane, Danielle Harris, Kristina Klebe and Scout Taylor Compton!

5) EVIL EVENTS! Besides all the great guests this weekend, there are a lot of evil events to enjoy, including a Friday Fright Night pre-party featuring SKARYOKEE!, a Makeup Challenge, That Damn Tattoo Contest, Hell Night Prom After Party dance party and the Chaostume Contest. Check the DotD schedule here for a full listing of events.

6) HOUSE OF INDIE HORROR! There’s a full schedule of panels focusing on the ins and outs of movie making; everything from screenwriting to monster makeup! Catch Kool Kat and exploitation extraordinaire, James Bickert (DEAR GOD NO!, FRANKENSTEIN CREATED BIKERS) and more on the Independent Filmmaker Panel, Saturday at 2:30pm! And you won’t want to miss killer women in horror, Kool Kats Dayna Noffke (“Under the Bed,” “Teaser”) with co-founder of the Women in Horror Film Festival, Vanessa Ionta Wright (“Rainy Season”) amongst others, on the How to Make Your First Horror Movie panel on Saturday at 6:30 p.m.!

7) Reels of the Dead Film Festival! Not only can you learn how to make your own horror flick, you can spend the weekend watching some great spooky cinema. Support Independent Horror, including the Etheria Film Night with Stacy Pippi, celebrating the best women directed genre films!

8) DotD Pre-party! Kick off things early with a rockin’ pre-party at the Clermont Lounge featuring Captain & Maybelle and Beitthemeans, on Thursday, Feb. 6!

9) Spooktacular Shopping! The dealers room is a great place to support independent artists and pick up something creepy cool. Art, jewelry, clothing, DVDs and anything else your monstrous little heart could desire!

10) In-Costume Photo-Ops! Where else could you get a photo with CANDYMAN Tony Todd or HALLOWEEN‘s Danielle Harris wearing their iconic costumes? Book ahead of time as these do tend to sell out fast.

For tickets, hotel information, and more please check out the Days of the Dead Atlanta website. Be there or be scared!

Category: Features | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Kool Kat of the Week: Local Filmmaker Debbie Hess Brings Tricks and Treats to The Plaza Theater with the Return of the Fifty Foot Film Festival on October 30

Posted on: Oct 25th, 2018 By:

by Melanie Crew
Managing Editor

In this season of ghosts and goblins, Debbie Hess, Executive Producer of the award-winning web anthology series, HORROR HOTEL, where the only recurring character is a menacing dilapidated motor court hotel where “People check in, but they don’t always check out,” along with jack of all film-trades son and Kool Kat Ricky Hess brings Atlanta a special treat (and maybe a few tricks) with the Return of the Fifty Foot Film Festival, invading The Plaza Theater on All Hallows Eve-Eve, October 30, at 7pm!

Return of the Fifty Foot Film Fest gives local sci-fi, horror, suspense and fantasy filmmakers the opportunity to showcase their films at this one-night only event. From premiere screenings to award-winning film shorts, this wee festival delivers a one-stop-shop of terror you won’t want to miss! Last year’s inaugural event, Attack of the Fifty Foot Film Festival, sold out to a hell-raising standing-room-only crowd and featured films by Ricky Hess, Kool Kat Vanessa Ionta Wright (Women in Horror Film Festival) and so many more! This year’s event promises twice as many filmmakers as the previous event, so you’ll definitely want to get your tickets early! Tickets can be purchased here.

ATLRetro caught up with Debbie to chat about the Return of the Fifty Foot Film Fest, the web anthology series HORROR HOTEL, and the importance of local film festivals for indie filmmakers.

ATLRetro: Attack of the 50 Foot Film Festival invades Atlanta for a second exciting year! Can you tell us a little about the event and what inspired you to bring it back to film lovers Atlanta-wide?

Debbie Hess: We decided to bring the event back for a second year because it was so well received last year and we still saw a need to provide a venue specifically for Atlanta-area filmmakers to raise the awareness of the awesome creative talent we have here. Events like this help to promote content creation and provide a chance for the community to support, encourage and recognize our Georgia films and filmmakers who can get eclipsed by all the media attention and national focus on the larger studio films that are coming here for production. And that is a great thing of course, but we need to constantly be aware that we have content creation going on in our own backyard as well and foster a support system to be able to show these quality films to the community. There’s nothing quite like seeing the film you have so lovingly and laboriously produced shown on the big screen.

What makes this event different than other film festivals?

Several things really. First off, it is for Atlanta-area filmmakers only. Most film festivals have entries from all over the world, although many festivals now program sections for local content only, which is good. When you are thrown in with filmmakers from countries that have a lot of grant programs available to make indie films and they are given a lot of money to make a short film, it’s not a level playing field. Most of your local indie filmmakers have similar resource restrictions, which makes it a load more fun to see what everyone has been able to do with that. And with this festival, all the ticket proceeds are split between the filmmakers (whose entry fee is their split of the theatre rental) allowing them more resources to help with their filmmaking. Both last year and this year we have covered the theatre rental fee and had earnings left over to go to our filmmakers. It’s a win-win. Secondly, it’s not a competition festival so there’s no stress involved or disappointment if you don’t win something. Everyone is a winner who has the fortitude to produce a finished film in the first place. It really is more of a celebration of the accomplishments of our local filmmakers right here in our own backyard.

Can you tell our readers what it takes to put on this type of film event?

Horror Hotel – “No Time For Love” (Jason Gaglione and Kat Rarick)

Sure! It’s quite a bit of work even for a small one like ours. We start out by reaching out to area filmmakers to see if they have a recent film (preferably a premiere) that they would like to submit. I can truly appreciate the dilemma that larger festivals must have in deciding which films to accept. Being a filmmaker myself surely helps because I can judge a little better and appreciate the qualities of an indie film. Some things just don’t require a big budget to get right – a good story, well-written and executed with attention to good filmmaking techniques, along with good editing, good sound, good acting etc. Since this festival is limited to films in the sci-fi, horror, suspense and fantasy genres, we are looking for films that have done a good job creating that “environment” for a visually appealing film in those genres. And then there is the challenge of programming those films in a fixed amount of time and in our case, a short period of time. We would love to have been able to include more of the films that were submitted.

Then there is the promotion work involved to get the word out. Because we want the community to come out and see the films, you have to go as wide as possible to advertise and market that. We post on all the larger and more popular community calendars that are online. We post on all social media and encourage all the filmmakers to do the same. We send out mass emails and loads of press releases and market packages to all the local media including TV stations, radio stations, online publications, student newspapers, podcasts creators, etc. This year we are so grateful to be covered by a number of great media outlets in the Atlanta area that are helping promote the event and the filmmakers. But by far, the filmmakers themselves have the most influence over who comes out to see the films.  It’s their invitations to friends, family and people who worked on their film that will garner the most attendees.

Care to share a little about the films and their directors/creators?

I’d love to since that’s what it’s all about!

THE WISH & THE WISP – Written/Directed by Vashmere Valentine is a delightful fantasy film currently sweeping up awards globally on the festival circuit. It’s about two bickering siblings that learn the true magic of believing when they find a real wish and encounter the menacing creature who wants it back. RESIDENCE 906 (premiere screening) – Directed by Heather Hutton, written by Michele Olson and produced by Iesha Price. Made with over 50 females, this film is a paranormal thriller about the mysterious deaths of a paranormal investigator’s team that force her to confront an enigmatic demon. NO TIME FOR LOVE (premiere screening) – Directed by Ricky Hess. This new episode of HORROR HOTEL is a sci-fi tale about time catching up to a reclusive sailor when a pretty girl brings the modern world into his life. It includes loads of special effects. Fans of The Curious Case of Benjamin Buttons will enjoy this one. FEAST – Written/Directed by Melissa Kunnap is a horror short that recently won best regional film at the Women in Horror Film Festival. The logline reads “A young intern finds out more about his boss and circle of friends than he’d wished to know,” and contains well-done effects. LIVING NIGHTMARE – Created by Jonathan Gabriel and Kristina Miranovic is an anthology of three actual nightmares based on unforgettable accounts, contains very nice sets and effects and is a real skin creep! BAD CANDY – Written/Directed by Scott Hansen is a horror short about a naughty trick R treater which has stunning cinematography and excellent costumes. Creepy clown alert! MR. SMILES (premiere screening) – Written/Directed by Tyler Hunt Weddle is a horror short about a girl who discovers a storybook in an attic whose characters come to life. Goosebump inspired, Freddy Kruger executed. PET’s tagline says it all, “A man with a short fuse and an empty checkbook introduces his irritating boss to man’s best friend,” written/directed by Justin Craig (premiere screening).

With HORROR HOTEL, you’ve made filmmaking a family affair [you as producer, your son Ricky Hess as the horror anthology’s creator/director and your husband Al Hess as the writer]. Can you tell us a little about the creative process within the family unit and any pros/cons working so closely with your family?

Yes, it has been a family affair and this year we added a new addition to our family, my new daughter-in-law, Allyson Hess, who works on set with us as well. My son Ricky is a powerhouse of talent. He not only is the creator/director but he also does nearly all of the post-production work including editing/color/sound/effects etc. PLUS he is a skilled camera operator as well. My husband, Al, is the writer for the series but he is also a talented props builder, lighting technician, set builder and so much more. Over the years, we have all increased our skill level and learned to do more in other areas which is pretty typical in indie filmmaking. The more you can do yourself, the higher the likelihood you can get something finished. Working within the family has its advantages in that decisions can be made quickly and you have a trusted unit to bounce things off of and get honest feedback on your ideas.  There are always differences of opinion in the filmmaking process and you have to work through those sometimes a little more carefully within family, but in the end we all have a deep respect for each other’s opinion and we work it out.

HORROR HOTEL has become a successful horror anthology, haunting into its 3rd season. What can our readers expect to experience this season, and where can they go to catch new episodes?

For our upcoming 3rd season, we have made longer films than we normally do, so there will be fewer of them. We tried to up the bar on our production with more challenging episodes that required more effects than we normally have had. Our pilot episode SLEEP TIGHT is about killer bed bugs that invade the hotel rooms. And yes, we did use some real bugs,  although they were not bed bugs of course, but we used what is referred to as movie bugs, hissing cockroaches, which are pathogen free and harmless to humans. Nonetheless, quite creepy! It premiered in last year’s festival and got a great response and feedback. It was probably one of the more ‘horror’ episodes we have done as a lot of ours tend to be more sci-fi themed.

The episode we are premiering this year from the 3rd season is sci-fi with loads of special effects and centers on a reclusive sailor (Jason Gaglione) who has shuttered himself away in his hotel room for decades. No one locally has ever seen him. A pretty girl (Kat Rarick) tricks her way into his room and the story is about what happens inside the room after that. We turned the room basically into a time machine. It was extremely challenging and required a ton of SFX make-up, pulled off beautifully by master make-up artists Greg and Sandra Solomon of Etcfx in Newman. If you like stories like THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON, you will like this episode!  Ricky did some exceptional work in post-production as well with some of the visual effects. We had to experiment with quite a few things. So, expect more production value out of 3rd season. It will be releasing later this year or early next year. Currently HORROR HOTEL can be seen on Amazon Prime as an anthology feature film of our 2nd season, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu and select episodes are on DirectTV as well.

What drew you to become a filmmaker and what keeps you playing within the horror genre?

I entered filmmaking by wanting to help Ricky make his HORROR HOTEL series. We had our house used as a set a few years back and we became fascinated with the process and thought it would be great fun to do some ourselves and help him out with that project. Really, the show has more sci-fi stories than mainstream horror. More like THE TWILIGHT ZONE-type of tales, which I love –  stories and films that take you to another place and stretch your imagination. I will always tend towards that type of films as favorites.

Is there a film/series you have always wanted to make? Or still plan to make?

We’ve tossed around some ideas for other series but have not nailed anything down. We are just focused at the moment in getting the 3rd season ready to distribute and let the creative juices flow after that!

Smaller local film festivals are all immensely popular these days. How important are these festivals to independent filmmakers? What’s the draw to submit a film and have it screened at one?

It’s much easier to be seen in a smaller local film festival, plus because it is in your community, more people will be able to actually attend and support you. The festivals are vital to indie filmmakers especially those making primarily short films as shorts don’t have much distribution possibility like feature-length films, yet they serve a vital purpose to showcase a filmmakers creative ability as well as those who work on them. Festivals add credibility to a filmmakers resume and at least prove a curator thought highly enough of them to be accepted.

Who would you say are the filmmakers or films that inspired you the most and what was it about those particular filmmakers/films that inspired you?

I am a very retro kind of gal and most of my favorite filmmakers are classics like Alfred Hitchcock and Rod Serling. I like the kind of horror/sci-fi they brought to film by creative storytelling and excellent tension building without all the fancy effects. I am a huge fan of most of Hitchcock’s more successful films. No favorite one in particular.

As an independent female filmmaker working in the horror genre, what challenges have you personally faced that seem to be a common theme amongst women in the industry?

I’d say probably just getting taken seriously and being respected. There are a lot of basic female common traits that work for us in filmmaking. Most females tend to be much more organized than our counterparts. I can always count on female cast and crew to be a little more attentive to details, return correspondence quickly and keep their calendar events in check. No male bashing here, just a noted difference in my own experience.

Within the last few weeks comments were made by a well-known production company insisting that he would hire female horror directors if only there were women to be hired. What is your response to this claim? How important do you feel it is to ensure representation exists within the industry, on local and international levels?

Well, the backlash was immense after that came out and they have since apologized, but it obviously was misspoken as hundreds of people if not thousands of people cited their own female peers as adequately qualified and we know that to be perfectly true just from our own local gals who produce quality work. I think the horror genre was just generally thought to be more male-dominated in the past because of the nature of the content, but festivals like the Women in Horror Film Festival held right here in Georgia certainly proves that to be false.

Claims that there aren’t any female horror filmmakers are obviously ludicrous, as Atlanta is chock full of them! Who would you say are your favorite women horror directors and why?

I know of several first-hand that as it happens, have been in our film festival or are this year. Vanessa Ionta Wright, founder of the Women In Horror Film Festival held in Georgia, has done some beautiful and creative films. One was from a Stephen King short story which screened at last year’s festival. And we have not one but two female filmmakers in this year’s fest. Melissa Lee Kunnap has a horror film in there as does Iesha Price. They BOTH contain high quality work. As a matter of fact, Iesha’s film, RESIDENCE 906 was primarily a female production with over 50 women in the cast and crew, only 2 males. That’s impressive to say the least.

Can you give us five things you’re into at the moment that we should be watching, reading or listening to right now— past or present, well-known or obscure?

Watching – Just finished up OZARK on Netflix. Give the series GOLIATH a try on Amazon Prime if you are into Billy Bob Thornton, which I am. I am a huge fan of the FARGO series and the original movie – just plain good storytelling with most excellent creepy characters. I am retro when it comes to music stuff – mostly oldies from the ‘70s. I love reading mystery novels and am constantly burning through books and am currently reading Randy Singer.
Any advice for up and coming filmmakers out there trying to get their foot in the door?

Whatever your budget, start with the basics. A good story is first. Get advice on what you have before you film. Don’t get too attached to an idea if it needs to be improved or trashed. Film with the purpose of making it as good as you can possibly get it and employ all the good filmmaking techniques you possibly can. Do your best work always knowing that people will judge you for it. Always be learning and improving your work.

Getting back to what brought us here, Attack of the 50 Foot Film Fest! Anything exciting planned for fest-goers? With this being the second exciting year, can we expect this to be an annual event, something we all can look forward to in years to come?

We will be talking briefly after the screening to the filmmakers and I think a few of them will have some exciting announcements about upcoming projects they will share. Annual event? We will see. We take that one year at a time and see if there is interest among the local filmmakers to make it happen!

Photos courtesy of Debbie Hess and used with permission.

Category: Kool Kat of the Week | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Murder, Mayhem and Madness! Our Top Horrorific Reasons to Haunt on Down to WOMEN IN HORROR FILM FESTIVAL 2018

Posted on: Oct 3rd, 2018 By:

by Melanie Crew
Managing Editor

The Women in Horror Film Festival kills it at Crowne Plaza Atlanta & Conference Center – Peachtree City this Thursday-Sunday Oct. 4-7. Festival creators Kool Kat Vanessa Ionta Wright and Samantha Kolesnik showcase one helluva line-up of creative kickass female minds in every aspect of the horrorific cinematic and filmmaking experience, contemporary and retro alike, with over 70 short films to whet your most nightmarish appetities!. The festival has much to offer all the genre cinephiles in your life, from slasher gore-fests to comedic catastrophes, check out our top reasons to get your spine tingled at the WIHFF!

1) BOOGIE DOWN AND BRING OUT THE DEAD. The gals of WIHFF throw some hellacious parties! So guys and ghouls, why not VIP it up and make your way to the fest on Thursday night, get your photos taken on the Dead Carpet and get hell-bent at the VIP Party (Oct. 4/7:30pm (photos); 8pm (party)). Or get horrorfied on Friday at the After Party, hosted by HorrorPack (Oct. 5/11:00pm). And the rest of the fest wouldn’t be the same without after parties on Saturday (Oct. 6/10:30pm) and Sunday (Oct. 7/9:00pm), so why not monster mash it up with the best of ‘em!

2) MARIANNE MADDALENA. One killer genre Producer, Marianne Maddalena has produced 26 plus films and television series including THE PEOPLE UNDER THE STAIRS (1991), WES CRAVEN’S NEW NIGHTMARE (1994), SCREAM (1996), DRACULA 2000 (2000), THE HILLS HAVE EYES (2006) and more!

3) TRINA PARKS. Best known for her role as Thumper in DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER (1971), Parks’ career spanned the ‘70s with appearances in an episode of Rod Serling’s NIGHT GALLERY (“The Phantom Farmhouse” – 1971); DARKTOWN STRUTTERS (1975); THE MUTHERS (1976) and more. She came back deadlier than ever in David DeCoteau’s IMMORTAL KISS: QUEEN OF THE NIGHT (2012).

4) ELM STREET GORE-GAL, HEATHER LANGENKAMP. Langenkamp won our horror hearts with her portrayal of nightmare-filled teen Nancy Thompson in Wes Craven’s ‘80s classic spawning its own hellacious franchise, A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET (1984).

5) FRIGHTENING FILMS! The WIHFF has heads rolling with three days of non-stop action filled to the bloody brim with films galore! Friday’s (Oct. 5) schedule includes an Experimental Horror Block, a Horror Comedy Shorts Block, a Features Screening (SHE WAS SO PRETTY: BE GOOD FOR GOODNESS SAKE, dir. Brooklyn Ewing), a Sci-Fi Shorts Block, an International Shorts Block, a second Feature Screening & World Premiere (BUGS: A TRILOGY, dir. Simone Kisiel), and a Macabre Thrills Block! Saturday (Oct. 6) terrifies with a Psychological Shorts Block, a Thriller Shorts Block, and a Feature Screening (ECHOES OF FEAR, dir. Brian and Laurence Avenet-Bradley)! And Sunday (Oct. 7) gets gory and kicks off the day with a Feature Screening (ALL THE CREATURES WERE STIRRING, dir. Rebekah and David Ian McKendry), a Regional Horror Shorts Block (including Kool Kat Dayna Noffke’s 2018 “Teaser”), an Animation Horror Shorts Block, a Feature Screening (RELICT: A MESOPOTAMIC TALE, dir. Laura Sanchez Acosta), a Student Horror Shorts Block and a Body Horror Shorts Block! So, come on out and discover some new terrifying talent!

6) KILLER PANELS. WIHFF offers several killer panels including From Indie to Studio – Making the Leapfeaturing one helluva line-up with Gillian Albinski (THE WALKING DEAD; THE STRANGERS), Mark Simon (ONE MISSED CALL; NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET III), and Marianne Maddelena (Oct. 6/12:30pm). Or catch the Diversity & Visibility panel featuring Trina Parks and horror author Mylo Carbia (Oct. 6/4pm).

7) WARPED WRITERS. There wouldn’t be films without writers, and of so WIHFF offers up highly acclaimed horror/thriller/suspense writer Mylo Carbia, a.k.a. Hollywood’s No. 1 horror film ghostwriter turned author (THE RAPING OF AVA DESANTIS / VIOLETS ARE RED). Carbia will be selling and signing during the festival.

8) SCARE-TASTIC SHOPPING.  You won’t want to miss out on the horrorific wares the festival vendors have to offer, from handmade horrors, to gothic gifts. During your stay, why not stock up on macabre movie memorabilia, cult classics and creepy clothing, costumes, accessories and more. Keep your eyes peeled for our fiend and horror filmmaker, Lynne Hanson and her spooky horror art! Vendors will be selling/meeting guests from daily during the festival.

Women in Horror Film Festival main festival hours are Fri. Oct.5  from 11 a.m. – 12 a.m.; Sat. Oct. 6 from 11 a.m. to 12 a.m.; and Sun. Oct. 7 from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. For more info, visit the Women in Horror Film Festival official website here.

Category: Features, Retro Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

This Week in ATLRetro, October 1-7, 2018

Posted on: Sep 30th, 2018 By:

by Melanie Crew
Managing Editor

Get spooked in ATLRetro this week! We’ve got MonsteramaCon and the Women in Horror Film Festival (WIHFF) to knock your socks off and so much more! As the days creep closer and closer to that most haunted pinnacle of fright and terror, we’ve dug up some spooktacular events just for you! The ghosts and goblins have been let loose, so don’t be a fraidy cat; get out and get Retro!

Monday, October 1

The Plaza Theater gets horrorific with screenings of Stephen Chiodo’s KILLER KLOWNS FROM OUTER SPACE (1988) and Kevin Connor’s MOTEL HELL (1980), through Oct. 4! Or catch The Plaza’s screening of Quentin Tarantino’s KILL BILL VOL. 1 (2003) at 9:30pm! Celebrate 30 years of Hayao Miyazaki’s MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO (1988) at theatres across Atlanta at 7pm [AMC Barrett Commons 24 (Kennesaw); Hollywood Stadium 24 (Chamblee); Avalon Stadium 12 (Alpharetta); Perimeter Pointe 10; Regal McDonough Stadium 16 (McDonough); Georgian Stadium 14 (Newnan); Cinemark Tinseltown 17 (Fayetteville); AMC Southlake Pavilion 24 (Morrow); and AMC Sugarloaf Mills 18 (Lawrenceville)]! Get jazzy with Simona Minns at the Red Light Café! The Milk Carton Kids dish out a night of Americana at the Variety Playhouse! Spend the night with The English Beat at City Winery! Get your Beckett fix as 7 Stages presents WAITING FOR GODOT, through Oct. 14! Get your vinyl fix during Little 5 Points Corner Tavern’s Records of Mass Destruction event every Monday! Studio Movie Grill (Alpharetta/ Duluth/Marietta) screens Mike Newell’s HARRY POTTER & THE GOBLET OF FIRE (2005) at 7:30pm! Swing on by Big Band Night featuring Joe Gransden and his amazing 17-member orchestra at Café 290 every first and third Monday of the month! Get the blues with Barrelhouse Bob Page at Blind Willie’s! Boogie on down to the Northside Tavern and spend an evening with Lola at her famous Monday Night Northside Jam!

Tuesday, October 2

The Atlanta Opera brings you CHARLIE PARKER’S YARDBIRD, a jazz opera about the life of Charlie Parker at Paris on Ponce at 7:30pm! Get intimate with David Byrne at the Fox Theatre! Kung fu it up with a screening of Chang Cheh’s FIVE DEADLY VENOMS (1978) at The Plaza Theater at 9:30pm! Rock out with A Hawk and a Hacksaw and Casey Hood at The Earl! Funk it up with The Senators at City Winery! Jam it up with Joe Gransden and his jazz jam session at Venkman’s every Tuesday! The Star Bar delivers a night of retro shenanigans with DJ Quasi Mandisco’s Little 5 Points Dance Party featuring retro-soul, funk, ‘80s, ‘90s and more! Blind Willie’s gets down with the Tyler Neal Band! And as always, groove on down with Swami Gone Bananas at the Northside Tavern!

Wednesday, October 3

Woodruff Park spooks it up with a free screening of Tim Burton’s BEETLEJUICE (1988) at 6pm! Get spellbound and catch a screening of Nicolas Roeg’s THE WITCHES (1990) at Studio Movie Grill (Alpharetta/Duluth/Marietta) at 7:15pm! Grind-core it up with Captured! By Robots at The Earl! The Star Bar dishes out a night of ‘60s psyche rock with The Sun Machine, Black Cat Rising and Naan Violence! Emory Cinematheque kills it with their “Hitchcock/Hitchcockian” series with a screening of Alfred Hitchcock’s NOTORIOUS (1946) at 7:30pm! The Atlanta Opera brings you CHARLIE PARKER’S YARDBIRD, a jazz opera about the life of Charlie Parker at Paris on Ponce at 7:30pm! Get kung fu’d with a screening of Jeong Chang-Hwa’s KING BOXER [FIVE FINGERS OF DEATH] (1972) at The Plaza Theater at 9:30pm! Or catch a screening of John LandisCOMING TO AMERICA (1988) at Brookhaven’s CineBistro! Celebrate 30 years of Hayao Miyazaki’s MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO (1988) at theatres across Atlanta at 7pm [AMC Barrett Commons 24 (Kennesaw); Hollywood Stadium 24 (Chamblee); Avalon Stadium 12 (Alpharetta); Perimeter Pointe 10; Regal McDonough Stadium 16 (McDonough); Georgian Stadium 14 (Newnan); Cinemark Tinseltown 17 (Fayetteville); AMC Southlake Pavilion 24 (Morrow); and AMC Sugarloaf Mills 18 (Lawrenceville)]! Get your Gene Wilder fix at the Northlake Festival Movie Tavern’s Flashback Cinema series screening of Mel BrooksYOUNG FRANKENSTEIN (1974) at 2:30pm/7:30pm, or catch a screening at The Springs Cinema & Taphouse at 1:45pm/7:25pm! Catch a screening of Disney’s BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (1991) at SCADShow at 6pm! Blind Willie’s gets rockin’ with their Blues Jam hosted by the Cazanovas! Rock on down to The Highlander for their Punk/Metal/New Wave Karaoke Night, every Wednesday! Get jazzy at the Red Light Café with The Gordon Vernick Quartet! Or make your way to the Northside Tavern as Danny ‘Mudcat’ Dudeck fires up a night of acoustic blues! St. James Live! delivers their Hump Days Blues night, getting classic blues-style every Wednesday! And as always, it’s Ladies Night at Johnny’s Hideaway which plays hits from Sinatra to Madonna for a generally mature crowd.

Thursday, October 4

Take a walk down the “Dead Carpet” for the second annual Women in Horror Film Festival brought to you by Festival Directors Kool Kat Vanessa Ionta Wright (RAINY SEASON) and Samantha Kolesnik (keep your bloody eyes peeled for our exclusive Kool Kat interview with Sam, coming soon), killing it through Oct. 7 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel & Convention Center in Peachtree City, featuring a horrorific lineup of shorts and feature-length films, panels, vendors and special guests including Marianne Maddalena (SCREAM; THE HILLS HAVE EYES), Trina Parks (DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER), Ross Childress (Collective Soul) and more!

Cineprov gets kaijurific with a night of MST3K-style laughs at The Plaza Theater as they screen/riff Noriaki Yuasa’s GAMMERA THE INVICIBLE (1966) at 7:30pm! Or kung fu it up at The Plaza with a screening of Jim Jarmusch’s GHOST DOG: THE WAY OF THE SAMURAI (1999) at 9:30pm! Creep on down to the FoxTale Book Shoppe in Woodstock for night with Dacre Stoker and the release of his new book, DRACUL at 6:30pm! Shakey Graves dishes out a night of rockin’ Americana at the Tabernacle! Rock Chastain 2018 brings you 10,000 Maniacs, Yellow Brick Road (a tribute to Elton John), the Dreambrother Band and Pony League! 7 Stages presents WAITING FOR GODOT, through Oct. 14! Bloody Disgusting presents Amityville Double Feature with screenings of Sandor Stern’s AMITYVILLE: THE EVIL ESCAPES (1989) and Tony Randel’s AMITYVILLE: IT’S ABOUT TIME (1992) at Studio Movie Grill (Duluth/Marietta); Regal Atlantic Station Stadium 18; and, Hollywood Stadium 24 (Chamblee)! Burly Q it up with The Candybox Revue’s Burlesque Karaoke at the Red Light Café!  Rock out with Landt, Wicked Spring, 72nd & Central and Katie Martin at The Star Bar! Folk it up with Donovan Woods and Tyler Boone at Eddie’s Attic! Get your ‘90s alt rock fix with Edwin McCain at City Winery! Bluegrass it up with the Georgia Mountain String Band at Venkman’s! It’s Mai Tai Thursday at Trader Vic’s so get swanky and hula on down for a night of rockin’ island tunes with The Knotty Boys and some killer island cocktails! Get the blues with The Shadows at Blind Willie’s! The Northside Tavern gets rockin’ with a little Chicago/Delta blues of The Breeze Kings! Get your boogie on at Fat Matt’s Rib Shack, as Chickenshack featuring Eddie Tigner, delivers some honky-tonk blues! And as always, boogie down at Mary’s, as the East Atlanta venue gets funky with their weekly Disco in the Village.

Friday, October 5

The horror! The horror! Atlanta kicks off its Halloween celebrations with a bang! Spook up the weekend with a whole lotta horror classics by haunting on down to the fifth annual Monsterama Convention invading the Atlanta Marriott Alpharetta and haunting all your senses through Oct. 7! You won’t want to miss our exclusive Kool Kat interview with Director Jeff Burr (FROM A WHISPER TO A SCREAM; PUMPKINHEAD II; TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE III) coming soon! Experience five horrorific tracks (Main, Maker, Literary/Arts/Comics, Media and Film Screenings) while perusing the monsterific vender tables. Catch some killer guests including  Luciana Paluzzi (THUNDERBALL; THE SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN); Jeff Burr; Rachel Talalay (FREDDY’S DEAD: THE FINAL NIGHTMARE; TANK GIRL); Ken Sagoes (A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 3); creaturific artist Kool Kat Mark Maddox; Kool Kat Shane Morton, ghost host with the most, a.k.a. Professor Morte; glamour ghoul Kool Kat Madeline Brumby and so much more! Tonight you won’t want to miss the Monster Kids PJ Fiesta with a screening of Jules Bass’ MAD MONSTER PARTY (1967) at 7:30pm; the Professor Fear and Pinky Show; a concert by Valentine Wolfe (Victorian chamber metal); Cineprov riffing Don Dohler’s THE FIEND (1980) in 16mm at 10pm; and a screening of Howard Ziehm’s FLESH GORDON (1974) at midnight! So, come on down for the horror that is Monsterama and get your classic horror fix!

It’s Day 2 of the Women in Horror Film Festival, so come on down and get your horror fix with a helluva lot of killer films, genre panels and more! Haunt on down to Netherworld Haunted House’s new deadly digs in Stone Mountain for their horrorific 22nd season, getting gory through Nov. 4! Get hellacious with Out of the Box Theatre’s production of EVIL DEAD: THE MUSICAL, killing it through Oct. 20! The Georgia Metropolitan Dance Theatre presents Dracula: The Halloween Ballet with a Bite at the The Earl Smith Strand Theatre, through Oct. 7! The Plaza Theater kills it with screenings of David Hartman’s PHANTASM (1979), Stuart Gordon’s RE-ANIMATOR (1985), and Don Coscavelli’s BUBBA HO TEP (2002), through Oct. 7! Make your way to Oktoberfest in Piedmont Park at 6pm! The Atlanta Opera brings you CHARLIE PARKER’S YARDBIRD, a jazz opera about the life of Charlie Parker at Paris on Ponce at 7:30pm! ATL Collective relives The Police – SYNCHRONICITY at the Buckhead Theatre! The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra gets bewitched with their Harry Potter & The Chamber of Secrets in Concert featuring a live performance of John Williams’ score with the film playing on a 40-foot screen, at Atlanta Symphony Hall, through Oct. 7! 7 Stages presents WAITING FOR GODOT, through Oct. 14! Spend the night with Eliot Bronson at Eddie’s Attic! Rock on down to The Highlander for their Rock ‘n’ Roll Extravaganza featuring We Want Blood, Genki Genki Panic and the HARAKIRIS! Amy Scott’s documentary covering the live of Hal Ashby, HAL (2018) opens at the Landmark Midtown Art Cinema! Funk it up New Orleans-style with Dumpstaphunk and AJ Ghent at the Variety Playhouse! Get your ‘90s alt rock fix with Edwin McCain at City Winery! Venkman’s celebrates Janis Joplin and Amy Winehouse! Geneva Red & The Original Delta Fireballs get down at Blind Willie’s! Get the old-school blues with Robert Lee Coleman at the Northside Tavern! Time-Warp it up at The Plaza Theater as they continue their tradition of screening THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW (1975) every Friday night, featuring the live cast of Lips Down on Dixie at midnight!

Saturday, October 6

Day 2 of the Monsterama Convention kills it with Professor Morte’s Silver Scream Spook Show’s screening of Kinji Fukasaku’s THE GREEN SLIME (1968) on 16mm with special guest Luciana Paluzzi at 4pm. Monster Mash it up at the Monster Prom! Day 3 of the Women in Horror Film Festival brings you more killer panels, workshops and blocks of killer films! Rev on down to The Vista Room for a night with Kool Kat Hot Rod Walt & The PsychoDevilles! Get hellacious and hell-bent at the Masquerade with Slaughter Que 2018, featuring one helluva rockin’ line-up with Kool Kats The Casket Creatures, Order of the Owl, Gunpowder Gray and so much more! The Landmark Midtown Art Cinema presents a Hal Ashby matinee screening of HAROLD AND MAUDE (1971) at 11am! Head on down to the Sweet Auburn Music Fest getting down through Oct. 7! Skank on down to City Winery for a night with Kool Kat Rev. Andy Hawley and the Southern Ska Syndicate! Spook on down to the Sleepy Hollow Christmas Tree Farm in Powder Springs for Stranger Things Tours & a Nighttime Corn Maze, through Nov. 3! Creep on down to the Center for Puppetry Arts for A Ghastly Gathering with the Ghastly Dreadfuls! Make your way to Avondale Towne Cinema for a Sting and Police Jam! The Georgia Metropolitan Dance Theatre presents Dracula: The Halloween Ballet with a Bite at the The Earl Smith Strand Theatre, through Oct. 7! Get folksy with Maria Muldaur at the Red Light Café! Rock out with New Junk City at The Earl! Leucine Zipper and the Zinc Fingers geeks it up and rocks out with the El Caminos, the Wussy Pillows and more at The Star Bar! Get some soul with Amel Larrieux (Groove Theory) at City Winery! The Turnpike Troubadours dish out a night of Americana at the Tabernacle! Boogie on down to The Basement for Heyday Pride – 80s Dance Party! Or make your way to Kavarna for a night of Yesterday Calling featuring ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s covers! Get experimental and rock out with Lydia Lunch Retrovirus at the Drunken Unicorn! Keisha & Kourtney Jackson dish out their Ladies of ‘60s Soul at Venkman’s! Get your second helping of Eliot Bronson at Eddie’s Attic! Cody Matlock gets down at the Northside Tavern! Geneva Red & The Original Delta Fireballs get down at Blind Willie’s! St. James Live! delivers their Tribute to the Legends night every Saturday night! And as always, DJ Romeo Cologne and DJ Kwasi Mandisco transforms the sensationally seedy Clermont Lounge into a ’70s disco/funk inferno late into the wee hours of the night.

Sunday, October 7

It’s your last chance to get terror-fied at the Women in Horror Film Festival, so come on out and get your horror movie fix! And it’s day 3 and your last chance to get your classic horror fix at the Monsterama Convention! Geek it up at Atlanta Comic Con from 11am – 5pm! The Landmark Midtown Art Cinema presents a Hal Ashby matinee screening of BEING THERE (1979) at 11am! The Atlanta Opera brings you CHARLIE PARKER’S YARDBIRD, a jazz opera about the life of Charlie Parker at Paris on Ponce at 3pm! The Georgia Metropolitan Dance Theatre presents Dracula: The Halloween Ballet with a Bite at the The Earl Smith Strand Theatre! Get down with The Dirty Heads at the Tabernacle! Celebrate 50 years of Peter YatesBULLITT (1968) starring Steve McQueen at theatres across Atlanta at 2pm/7pm [AMC Barrett Commons 24 (Kennesaw); Regal Atlantic Station Stadium 18; Hollywood Stadium 24 (Chamblee); Avalon Stadium 12 (Alpharetta); Perimeter Pointe 10; Regal McDonough Stadium 16 (McDonough); Georgian Stadium 14 (Newnan); Cinemark Tinseltown 17 (Fayetteville); AMC Southlake Pavilion 24 (Morrow); AMC Sugarloaf Mills 18 (Lawrenceville); and Regal Mall of Georgia Stadium (Buford)]! Stomp on down to The Earl for a night with Blitzen Trapper! Get some soul with Amel Larrieux (Groove Theory) at City Winery! UB40 celebrate 40 years and rocks out at the Buckhead Theatre! Have a bloody fantastic time at the Northlake Festival Movie Tavern’s Flashback Cinema series screening of John Carptenter’s classic HALLOWEEN (1978) at 2:30pm/7:30pm! Get sweet and low down blues-style at the Northside Tavern with Uncle Sugar with Eddie Tigner!

Ongoing

Get your Beckett fix as 7 Stages presents WAITING FOR GODOT, through Oct. 14!

Get hellacious with Out of the Box Theatre’s production of EVIL DEAD: THE MUSICAL, killing it through Oct. 20!

Spend fantastical nights with the Alliance Theatre’s production of A MIDSUMMER’S NIGHT DREAM at the Atlanta Botanical Garden, through October 21!

Spook on down to the Sleepy Hollow Christmas Tree Farm in Powder Springs for Stranger Things Tours & a Nighttime Corn Maze, through Nov. 3!

Haunt on down to Netherworld Haunted House’s new deadly digs in Stone Mountain for their horrorific 22nd season, getting gory through Nov. 4!

ATL CRAFT presents a magical occult Movie Night every second Friday of every month!

My Parents’ Basement goes old-school with their monthly Pinball Tournament, every first Wednesday of the month!

Geek it up and get to bowlin’ at The Comet Pub & LanesComet Cosplay, getting nerdy the first Monday of every month!

Dad’s Garage’s Big Boozy Nerdy Game Night brings out the kid in you, every first Monday of the month at 7pm! 

Union EAV rocks out with their Punk Rock Karaoke ATL, and every last Tuesday of the month!

The Highlander rocks out with their Punk/Metal/New Wave Karaoke Night, every Wednesday!

Get your vinyl fix during Little 5 Points Corner Tavern’s Records of Mass Destruction! event, every Monday!

Geek it up at My Parents’ Basement with their weekly Tuesday night Nerd Trivia at 8pm!

Nerd Film Mafia screenings at the Diesel Filling Station following NerdCore Trivia, every last Tuesday of the month!

The Plaza Theater Time-Warps it up as they screen, THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW (1975) every Friday night, featuring the live cast of Lips Down on Dixie at midnight!

Get your reggae fix with Rub-A-Dub gettin’ down at WildPitch Music Hall, every second Sunday of the month!

Every first and third Mondays are Big Band Nights at Café 290, featuring Joe Gransden and his amazing 16-piece orchestra playing jazz and swing standards in the tradition of The Glen Miller Orchestra and other legendary groups.  Second and fourth Mondays are Bumpin the Mango, ‘The groove that makes you want to move!’

Every first Wednesday is the Graveyard Tavern’s Graveyard Swing Night, featuring the swingin’ jazz and boogie-woogie sounds of the Savoy Kings!

If you have a suggestion for a future event that should be included in This Week in Retro Atlanta or see something we missed, please email us at atlretro@gmail.com.

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