Friday, June 6, 2014

"God Remembers Breasts," or something like it, as Horror Hotel Weekend checks into Hudson, June 6-8

Event preview by Charles Cassady, Jr.

Cleveland's going all out to try and get the next Republican Convention (suggestion: try to convince those people that LeBron is still here. If they really believed Saddam Hussein was a threat to the US, they'll swallow most anything).

Big deal. Who needs the GOP? As long as Horror Hotel stays near Cleveland (well, the southeastern part of Cuyahoga County, at least), there's is hope. Last year, at my night TV production job, I told the lads who were my co-workers (who seemed to spend much of their off-work times submerged for hours in online RPGs and PC games) that I knew of this thing, not very far away, where they could see actual sexy women in the flesh. Women dressed in tight Spandex, or sometimes little more than vinyl electrical tape. Perhaps even willing to talk with them. This was possibly the best information anyone could have offered these young Ohio males in quite some time.

Unfortunately, not long after that, these same young guys left the job en masse. I am ignorant of why exactly they quit and and where they went; I don't like to make waves at work. All I know
is, at the rate they were going, it's doubtful these fellows would ever get to interact with that quality of female outside of Lara Croft (though some guys seem pretty well satisfied with Lara Croft, and consider what happened with that LA Clippers owner and his jones for female companionship, perhaps I shouldn't judge).

But I am left without a posse to tell the news and impress with my worldly moxie and sophistication. So I must share it with you Movie Blog saddoes instead. Come and meet the sexy scream queens (and kings) at Horror Hotel Weekend, happening June 6, 7 and 8 at the Clarion Inn in Hudson.

Begun in 2012, Horror Hotel Weekend is an annual Hudson convention spun off from The Indie Gathering, a long-running series of meetings and conventions by/for do-it-yourself northeast Ohio filmmakers. Recognizing that the most enthusiastic of our fair state's backyard movie moguls are into the horror/sci-fi genres and meeting goth chicks, organizers of The Indie Gathering launched Horror Hotel Weekend as a networking event and fan-appreciation expo, complete with audience-participation contests.

The convention brings in celebrity guests, like original TOXIC AVENGER actor Mark Torgl and makeup f/x experts Shawn Sterba and Dan Overton. Marathon screenings of horror features and "micro cinema" short subjects have submissions literally from all over the world, from the locally produced gore-crime thriller MURDER MACHINE to a French entry whose title I have roughly translated as "God Remembers Breasts." I'm probably very badly mistaken about that, but perhaps coprighting a name of that sort wouldn't be a bad idea. Speaking of which, speaker panel discussions include local legal expert Mary Ellen Tomazic, who will discuss what aspiring moviemakers should know about the law. Other panelists include longtime local filmmaker Johnny Wu, on publicity and promotions, and stunt/pyrotechnic logistics with martial-arts and stunt coordinator Ray Szuch.

Of course, there's the always-popular Scream Queen competition, in which aspiring horror heroines have to deliver the best panic-stricken shrieks, a workshop and contest for soundtrack composition, and a vendor room.

Horror Hotel Weekend begins Friday, with film screenings starting at 6 p.m. and a networking party at 10 p.m. The convention goes into full swing Saturday from 11 a.m. to midnight (with an after-party) and Sunday from 11 a.m. to a 5 p.m. awards ceremony.

Tickets range from an advance VIP admission for the whole weekend at $40, to one-day rates or $7 for individual feature-film screenings. The location is the Hudson Clarion Inn, right off the freeway at 6625 Dean Memorial Parkway. Phone (330) 653-9191. A website with directions, a full schedule and a photo gallery from 2012 is up at

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