Monday, December 23, 2013

Another Manos Film

There are always rumors and snippets and thoughts on the idea of Manos remakes, sequels and
 prequels.  However, the only serious efforts in film that I know of, are the attempt at a sequel "The Search for Valley Lodge" in 2010 and currently a prequel in the works.  Can't say anything yet about the latter but I will tell a story about the former.

I suppose I could think of the sequel as a May December romance, of sorts.  It started with a self named star, director, writer, producer who said he wanted to make this epic film.  Sound familiar?  Funny thing is, both my dad and I said yes to this one too. 
So anyway, this fellow got us to agree to all sorts of things and without any firm promise in return.  My dad was to do a cameo as the aged Master and I was to star as current day grown up Debbie.  He was quite persuasive at first but in a short time we began to question why we had become involved.   We did some filming in Oregon in May of 2010 and then did some more filming in
 El Paso Texas in December of the same year.  Things went down hill after that with money issues,  disagreements and many of the other perils that relationships have.  It ended completely with a paraphrased dialogue that went something like this...
 Him  "If you don't do as I say, you don't have to be part of this project.  We will just go find another Debbie." 
Me "Good luck with that.  I am Debbie"

I know that sounds a bit prima donna of me but if you knew the whole story, you would ask why I didn't stand up for myself sooner.

Anyhow, a lot of good things did come out of that.  I met and re met some really great people and have the honor of remaining friends with many of them.  Diane Mahree, who played my mother in Manos was one.  We spent a week together in El Paso and became good friends.  I met Bryan Jennings, son of the Sheriff in Manos, William Bryan Jennings.  He and I and his wife Wanda continue to meet up at various Manos events around the country.  I also took the opportunity to open doors for healing fractured relationship within my family.  It's not like my family is hanging out now but I did have a nice visit with my dad, The Master, in the meat department at Safeway yesterday afternoon.  He was marveling that a roast could cost nearly $100.00. 

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!  Blessings to you all.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Happy Manos Holidays

I tend to get introspective this time of year.  Even more introspective than usual.  I can hardly live with myself.  One thing I'm introspecting is this whole Manos phenomena.  I've been  paying attention and sticking myself into every little Manos thing going and it's been really fun.  Believe me, I've kept tabs on this Manos stuff for a while now and truly, this year felt different.  I'm a bit starry eyed with wonder at what 2014 holds for our beloved gem.

Manos was filmed in about a week and a half during the summer of 1966 on the back property of Judge Coldwell.   It was then edited in about 6 hours, at night in one of the local television stations after closing. (Television stations used to shut down at night).   Contracts were signed in May and June, it was filmed in July and premiered in November of the same year.  None of the cast got to see much before the premiere, other than maybe a couple times at  Hals to see a bit of it on his home projector.  I remember going with my parents to Hal's and we saw some of the scene where Torgo is massaged by the wives.  For kicks, Hal ran the film back and forth a few times when Torgo was pushed off the stone bed so that he fell and rose back up.  We all cracked up.   After the premiere everyone went their own way and basically never spoke of it again. I personally looked for Manos most of my youth and had pretty much given up when it showed up on TV in January of 1993.  MST3K gave my dad and I the chance to see it for the first time since 1966.  We were shocked to say the least.

As time went on, a strange thing seemed to be happening as Manos fame continued to grow.  It began inspiring things outside of film.  It brought a wide range of talent and expression to the fore and a dizzying array of ideas.  Play, Opera, Podcasts, Blog, Game, Restoration, Art, Music, Clothing and list goes on.  It has also unleashed a dark side...but, I can't talk about that now.  I could but I won't.  Not yet anyway.

As everything Manos continues to build, I am struck with the thought. "Be careful what you wish for"  My personal Manos dreams are coming true and that also means I gotta get my act together and become more organized.  This thing could get out of Hand. 

Be safe during this busy distracted season.  Whatever your traditions, I wish you many Blessings.

P.S.  If you're looking for a perfect gift for your favorite Manos fan, check out my etsy store.