Thursday, February 11, 2016

The Master Speaks!

This week our Torgometer blasted to, and past the 60% level.  We are currently 66% and the next level is within our grasp before the coming weekend with the wonderful support we are finding among our project backers and in the fan world at large.  Our most sincere thanks and gratitude!  Please... Please keep spreading the word of Manos far and wide! 

The personal journey of beginning this project was both frightening and exhilarating.  I wondered if I would be able to do something wonderful for my dad and something equally fun for the fans.  I clearly knew that alone, I could not do more than dream.  Once again I invoke the Will of Manos.  Never in my life have things conspired to follow a particular path.  I have learned that my job is simply to follow it.  What an amazing journey with a fabulous production team this has become.
Check out our Writer/editor Steve Foley's new promo video.  I love it!  The Master Speaks!
Yesterday, I finished the Master and Dog painting that we will be using in Manos Returns.  As many of you know, my dad The Master painted the original painting along with doing all the artwork and most of the costuming.  Some of his work including the iconic painting went home with the director of the original Manos The Hands of Fate,  so now, as an artist myself, I am re creating a few of dad's pieces to use in the film and to offer as Kickstarter perks.   Hint: Check out the Limited Edition Torgo staff in the perks! 

Jackey and her Master painting
Jackey and her Master painting
 ...and in case you missed it, Tonjia Atomic and I had a great live interview with Final Cut.  You can watch and listen here.  I love the acknowledgement to Tonjia for being a rare woman in horror film.  She is a trail blazer and I'm proud to be on her team.
Stay tuned to the project.  We are announcing some cool new swag on Valentine's Day for all who love Manos!  I know I want some!!
Manos Returns Kickstarter

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Manos Returns Kickstarter is 36% funded in a few days

As terrifying as it is to put myself out there so publicly and with a project that has the potential to draw scrutiny from fans and detractors of Manos, I still felt it had to be done, and so far no one else had.  The other thing is, that if my dad were to be part of the project and have an opportunity to see it finished, time was of the essence.  Dad is 80 and although he is one tough old bird, we are all mortal.   A sequel to Manos was in the works…again.  Way back in 2010 another sequel had been planned and even partially executed.  Part of what was filmed were my dad’s scenes and some other scenes that included other key people of Manos.  That project never got finished and never will.  The guy putting that together burned every bridge he walked across it seemed, in the debacle that was the first attempt at a sequel to Manos.   It was a big disappointment to all the people who had already put so much into it and I was sorely disappointed that I had dragged dad into something he would never see a benefit from doing.  A deeper sore point that it was Manos related and dad had only done it for me. 
  Fast forward to 2015 and much has happened in the interim.  Rachel Jackson’s Manos Hands of Felt in Seattle Washington, Manos The Hands of Fate as a stage production by Brian Koch in Portland Oregon, The Restoration of the original film in Blu-ray by Ben Solovey,  a prequel by David Roy titled The Rise of Torgo in postproduction.  And I wrote a book, Growing Up With Manos The Hands of Fate which will be available for sale within months.

Manos has given me opportunity to meet and collaborate with so many interesting and talented people and somehow during the journey, the right group of creative successful people just fell together and decided it was time to make a sequel.   We say it’s the will of MANOS and we’re kind of kidding, but we’re also kind of not. It's very strange how MANOS makes things happen, but we know enough by now to just go with it.

 A few days ago as we prepared to launch our Manos Returns Kickstarter on Friday the 29th, I felt sick.  I thought "What if me and a few crazy friends are the only ones that believe this is a cool thing to do?  What about my reputation?"  and then my very next thought was, "What reputation?  Geez Jackey, look what you're known for, after all."  and then I was fine.  So we launched and the thing  just took off.   Whether you love Manos or love to hate it, you have an opinion and the fans are speaking.  We are on the fourth day and as of this writing, we are 36% funded and coming up on $9000.00, and because of you, our project is #8 most popular in Kickstarter Film and Video projects.

This photo was last night before going to bed exhausted and happy.

We have a ways to go for our base goal and if we want to make our dream movie it's going to take more than that.  Please keep sharing and helping us get the word out so we can bring you the best fan film possible.

Manos Returns Kickstarter

Thank you so very much for your support.


Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Manos Returns Kickstarter January 30

I’ve talked a little about the sequel to Manos and now it’s time to really start talking.  We are ready to get to work with a talented team of creative entrepreneurs and indie filmmakers and get this movie made.

 Jackey Neyman Jones (producer, lead actor) -  My dad was The Master and I was little Debbie in "Manos: The Hands of Fate.”  I live in the Great Northwest as a professional artist, art instructor and author of "Growing Up With Manos: The Hands of Fate" which is to be released soon.  I have been a special guest at numerous events like The El Paso Classic Film Festival, Hollywood Independent Film Festival, and Seattle’s Crypticon and have appeared in several film and theatrical projects including “Manos The Rise of Torgo”, “The Curse of Pelican Bay”(post production) and “She Run” (in production)

Tonjia Atomic (director) - Tonjia is an award-winning filmmaker, actress, musician, jeweler, and freelance writer. Her films range from the dark and disturbing to the light and comedic. She is best known for the films "Plain Devil," "Hobo with a Trash Can," and "Walking to Linas." Her writing has been featured in several online and print magazines. She's in the bands Duet To-It, Huh-Uh, and Filthy Issue. Her music has been featured in several films including "Bikini Gorilla" and "Scarewaves."

Steve Foley (writer/editor) - Steve, owner of Foley Video Productions, Inc. based in Tallahassee, FL, spent 17 years in broadcast television production before starting his own company in 1995. His recent film-related projects include post and effects on several short films and he is currently putting the finishing touches on a low budget horror anthology feature. In addition, Steve is working with the stars of cult film "Alien Factor" to produce DVD extras for the upcoming Blu-ray release.

Joe Sherlock (Director of Photography) - Joe is an award-winning filmmaker and a veteran of over 30 feature and anthology films. Joe’s extensive body of work includes "Drifter," "Bloodsucking Redneck Vampires" and "Twisted Fates," which have been screened across North America. His work as director of photography includes "Dead Ink," "The Evilmaker" and "Platoon of the Dead." Cult movie expert Joe Bob Briggs comments, "Drive-In Academy Award nominations for Joe Sherlock, the writer/director/composer/editor, for doing things the drive-in way."

Rachel Jackson is our behind the scenes everything from crafting the Kickstarter to marketing and sage advice.  She and her Manos puppets will be making an appearance in the film as well.

MANOS Returns is a tongue-in-cheek return to Valley Lodge. It follows a group of young would-be filmmakers who learn their favorite movie, “MANOS: The Hands of Fate,” is based on a true story. They set out to visit the site of the events that inspired the original and of course they find more than they bargained for.
Thanks to Mystery Science Theater 3000, MANOS has become a pop culture phenomenon, gaining more and more fans as time goes on. We think it’s high time we found out what became of everyone at Valley Lodge, so we want to film MANOS Returns this summer, release it on DVD and have it ready to screen in time for MANOS’s 50th anniversary on November 15th.
There have been a number of Manos inspired projects through the years.  Some fizzled out, a few other completed the goal, and others are still in progress.   Several have been very successful.   Ones such as Manos Hands of Felt by Rachel Jackson, the HD Blu-ray of the Manos Restoration by Ben Solovey, distributed by Synapse and the Manos game by FreakZone Games for iPhone.   Manos Hands of Felt and the Restoration both launched Kickstarter campaigns to fund their projects and both far exceeded expectations.  Such is the love of Manos.  And let’s not forget the ones who made Manos known to the world to begin with.  Mystery Science Theater 3000, headed by Joel Hodgson (did I mention he wrote the foreword to my soon to be published Manos book?).   The November Kickstarter campaign to bring back MST3k quickly set records when the MST3K campaign became one of the top 10 most funded Kickstarter campaigns ever, closing near 6 million dollars . 
 So….  We’re not asking for nearly that much.  We don’t need that much.  Seriously.
In addition to the people already willing to help us with their time and resources, we know we can make a bare bones version of MANOS Returns for $24,000 (20,000 after the Kickstarter fees and reward fulfillment).  For $55,000, we can make the dream movie we envisioned when we started talking about this project. 
We’ve committed to this project and thanks to fan support we’ve already filmed The Master, my dad Tom Neyman in his part.   And we’ve got everything lined up to get Nicki Mathis, the vocalist on the original soundtrack, into the studio to re-record “Forgetting You” for our soundtrack as soon as the Kickstarter has ended.
The Kickstarter goes live January 30th. That’s the day that Mystery Science Theatre 3000 first brought MANOS back from oblivion in 1993, so we thought it was the perfect day to launch MANOS Returns. As soon as we launch, will take you directly to our Kickstarter page. Please consider backing us on that first day; the faster we gain backers out of the gate, the more successful we’ll be.

If you can’t spare any money right now, but still want to help us get back to Valley Lodge, spreading the word about this campaign is a huge way you can show your support. Please share our Kickstarter far and wide. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Use the hashtag #MANOSReturns to bring the word of MANOS to all!

And thank you, as always, for your awesome support.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Manos Looks Ahead

Another very long gap between posts.   I sometimes think I’m done writing this blog but then realize there are always things to talk about when it comes to Manos.  Especially these days.  In the last year alone, the Restoration of Manos in Hd Blu-ray, distributed by Synapes was released to the public through Amazon and hit the top thirty best seller list in pre orders the week before it was available.   At the same time, the October 2015 issue of Playboy Magazine featured an article titled The Battle Over The Worst Movie Ever Made.  I had interviewed for it and my name begins the article.  The fun part for me was to be able to say that I was in Playboy.   Marking that off my bucket list at 56 years old.  My boyfriend loved using that as bragging rights.  My twenty one year old son?  Not so much.  Ha!                                                          Playboy Article
I was invited to Crypticon in Seattle last September to attend a screening of a short documentary “Conversations with Jackey Neyman”.  It was a last minute thing so I wasn’t a Special Guest and didn’t have a table or anything.  Little secret?   It was my first Con ever. I have never been to one.   I had the best time walking around anonymously with my Manos t shirt on and talking to people who recognized and commented on it.  Seems I got enough attention that I am invited back for Crypticon 2016 as a Special Guest.  Woo Hoo!  See you there!

I wrote a book.  Not only that, but I finished it and it is now in the hands (manos) of my publisher, Bear Manor Media. This project could not have possibly happened without my fabulous co-author Laura Mazzuca Toops with her editing skills and gentle prodding.  I just can’t imagine.  Started with a couple years thinking about writing it, then a couple more talking about it and then another length of time to find someone to guide me.  Took sixteen months to research and write, with a ton of sitting around staring into space with a stupid look on my face.  No one was around, so I’m just assuming that’s how it would have looked.  During all that time, I couldn’t seem to write anything else.  Grocery lists were a chore.  I also didn’t pick up another book to read.  So weird.  I love to read.  Now that I’m done writing (for a while, at least) I’m reading two.  Initially, I was going to write a story about my memories and those of my dad, The Master.  One thing led to another and I began uncovering things I had not known and people who I thought had disappeared forever or who were unknown in the first place.  I learned that I’m pretty good at research and that I enjoy it.  Maybe shoulda been a private eye.   This journey  resulted in recovered stories, new friendships begun, old ones renewed and much family healing. 
 I’ll let you all know the release date as soon as I hear anything.  Expecting it to be within the next few months and then some traveling to promote and meet the fans of Manos.  Check out the awesome cover art by Phil Dragash.  Also take a moment to notice the foreword is written by Joel Hodgson, the creator of MST3K!

So now time to focus on the next big Manos project, Manos Returns.  A sequel to Manos The Hands of Fate that I'm producing and my dad, The Master is appearing in.  Watch for our crowdfunding campaign coming soon.  Follow me here for notifications and updates and check out                                                                                               Manos Returns

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Manos Returns

The Return
An amazing new Manos project has come about entirely organically. A thought. A theoretical conversation or two. A suggestion of talented people and more conversations. Suddenly a film formed and manifested into a full fledged project: MANOS RETURNS. As I've witnessed time and again, the hand of fate guides everything. It's very strange how Manos makes things happen, but I know enough by now to just go with it.
Why now? It has to be now. The original has become a symbol to many fans of MST3K and B movies, and a source of inspiration to a new generation of film makers who love the concept of everything not to do in film making. But in 1966 it was a failure to everyone involved. This is an opportunity for the surviving principal players to enjoy a little recognition for the the place Manos holds in pop culture history.
I and a small band of indie film folk kicked things off with a t-shirt fundraiser, offering an exclusive MANOS RETURNS shirt and autographed art cards. These proceeds will go towards start-up funds, most importantly capturing initial footage of my dad, returning as The Master. T-shirts are available for a limited time only. The deadline to order them is October 1st.

A Kickstarter campaign to cover the remainder of the project’s expenses will be launched in the fall of 2015.
Stay tuned! It is the will of MANOS!

Thursday, July 16, 2015

The Manos Soundtrack

Until now, the soundtrack to Manos: The Hands of Fate has been pretty much a mystery.  Other than music composer/ pianist Robert Smith and songwriter Russ Huddleston, we knew nothing of the people who played the music.  The vocalists and musicians were never credited in the film.  Through research for my Manos book and a few serendipitous connections, I was able to find nearly all of them.  A random sighting on a facebook post ultimately started the domino effect.  It's as though everything I need to get this story done is now being handed to me and I can't tell you how exciting that is. 
For those who have actually watched Manos all the way through, you may have noticed the music.  It's so unique and odd at times but if you listen, there is no doubt that there is a lot of talent involved.  How is it that Hal Warren, with little more than a silver tongue could convince this group of accomplished musicians to create an original soundtrack for a film they knew nothing about?  Saving that whole story for later but for now, I'm thrilled to introduce you to Nicki Mathis, the vocalist on "Forgetting You" and Magic Circle".  I've had the supreme honor of speaking with her on the phone and we continue building our friendship online.  Nicki was already an accomplished Jazz singer in El Paso by the time she was recording the Manos soundtrack in 1966, and in fact had helped organize and had performed in First Pass of the North Jazz Festival in El Paso, TX, in 1959, featuring Dave Bruebeck, Eugene Wright, Joe Morello; Chico Hamilton with Eric Dolphy; Lambert, Hendricks and Ross; Chris Conner; and Maynard Ferguson with Anne Marie Moss; the concert master of ceremonies was Leonard Feather.  She has an anthology album out that really highlights her beautiful voice and I would encourage Manos fans to take a listen and buy her CD.  Gotta support the arts!
Nicki Mathis' Afrikan Amerikan Jazz

Nicki is my kind of a woman.  She is elegant with a sharp wit and great sense of humor.  I love when she told me how glad she was to learn that Manos is known as the worst movie ever made because she and her band mates were thinking pretty much the same thing at the 1966 premiere.  She was just too polite to say so until now.  Isn't it nice to be validated?

Hope to chat with some of the others this week so if you've got any questions you want me to ask, now's the time.  Post your questions here or connect with me through my Facebook page. 
Debbies Manos The Hands of Fate.  Be sure to press that little "like" button while visiting.

Monday, July 6, 2015

The Master and Debbie

I got to spend a few hours with my dad last week working on a little video project a friend of mine, Rick Zunck, is producing, directing and filming.  This project has been in Rick's head for a couple years and the planets finally aligned to allow it to happen.  Not really, but it did seem that way.  I actually thought it wouldn't happen since no one was getting any younger and dad has had various health issues in recent years.  Now, at 79,  I didn't know if he would be up for it.  He was.  In fact, he had such a great time getting an opportunity to do a little acting and hang out with us.  Even my son's showed up to help and brought my grandson Jayce and his sister Araydia, to see great grandpa.
  I also had the chance to get dad to record his thoughts for an introduction to my Manos behind the scenes book.  He's always said he has no idea how or why Manos has become so popular but he's glad it has.  It makes him happy.  It makes me happy to share with him how many fans he has and how gracious and kind everyone is in regards to The Master and Debbie.  It may be an odd thing to be known for but I can tell you that The Master, Tom Neyman has embraced it although at his age he prefers to live vicariously through my reports and stories, and I thoroughly enjoy the excuse that Manos gives me to visit with him.  You may wonder why I would need an excuse to see my own dad, but I do.  It's the nature of the family.  You'll learn more about that in the book.  I will say that it is not for lack of love.  We love each other very much.

Can't say much yet about what we filmed but I can share a few photos and you'll see that the theme is Manos related.  I even had to wear a Debbie dress that I made myself and my dad is wearing a robe that I made just the way my mom made the original costumes.  Bryan Jenning, who is the eldest son of the original sheriff in Manos, and his wife Wanda were visiting Portland, Oregon from their home in Boise Idaho and took an extra day to make the almost 2 hour drive South to be part of the project.  Great to have the sheriff on board by proxy.
Dad nailed it on his lines and got ovations from the crew which resulted in the sweetest smile.  Any of you who has done film will understand the editing will take some time.  Particularly since Rick will need to do it all in his extra time.  I'll keep you posted on when it will be ready and where.  I'm hoping it will be submitted to some short film festivals.  Would be great to have it presented at some of the venues I hope to attend next year.  For now...Just so happy to have it  "in the can"
Photos courtesy of Lonnie Thurston Photography