Monday, May 25, 2015

Crypticon Seattle 2015

Just returned home from a weekend at  Crypticon Seattle and have to admit that this was my very first Con.  Not only that, but I got to go as a guest.  Wow! What a really great time we had.

It all began when Calvin McCarthy of 7th Street Productions contacted me to ask if I would do a small cameo in his film and I, of course, said yes, as I do.  He then asked to interview me on camera and again, I acquiesced.  He drove to my home in Western Oregon from his in Vancouver Washington. I did my part for his film, we had a nice talk, he left and I forgot about it.  Months later I'm again contacted by Curtis. "Hey, that interview we did a while back?  Well.  I submitted the documentary, 'Manos: A Conversation with Jackey Neyman  to Crypticon and guess what?  We're in the short film festival." He went on to ask if I would like to attend.  Well, yeah, I would like to attend. The second thing I said was "Documentary?  What documentary?"  Long story short, three weeks later, my fabulously supportive boyfriend, John and I arrive in Seattle with me dressed in the Manos t shirt that has my dad, The Master emblazoned across the front, and postcards with a little info about who I am for anyone who showed recognition of the shirt design or said anything about Manos.  I didn't have a table and wasn't listed anywhere as a guest since it was short notice but although I was there for just one event, I had entry to the Con for all three days so I took advantage of the amazing opportunity to meet people and find out how the whole thing works.  It was beyond any expectation I could have had when a little buzz began that the little girl from Manos was wandering around.
 It was even more fun when Rachel Jackson creator of Manos: The Hands of Felt, came to hang out with me and brought The Master puppet with her.  We enjoyed causing a little stir. 
As a result, I am invited back next year as a celebrity guest and I know they want to see Rachel and The Master again too.  I also connected with a couple organizers of other Cons who want to talk about their upcoming events and on top of all that I had a chance to meet some of the wonderfully talented guests. I have special gratitude for the time that Ken Foree (best known for Dawn of the Dead) and Michael Berryman of my personal favorite "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest" each gave  to answer questions and to offer advice.  Charming men indeed.

The short film festival was very well attended and had a really interesting line up of films from documentary to animation to gut wrenching horror.  It was an honor to be featured in a chosen film and I want to thank Calvin McCarthy and the rest of the 7th St Production crew, Arianna Kindsfather, Natalie Lucia and Josh Dietrich for inviting me and for being such enthusiastic young film makers.  Great job.

As you might have surmised, I am gearing up for next year and the 50th anniversary of Manos: The Hands of Fate.  2016 will see both Ben Solovey's HD Bluray Restoration of the film and my book "The Untold Story of Manos: The Hands of Fate".  Who knows what other projects could arise by then?  I vote for a ManosCon, but that will have to be up to people much more organized and funded than myself.  If anyone is up to that task, please be sure I get an invite.  In the meantime, check out my new website and thanks for reading.

Monday, May 18, 2015

The Return of Debbie

I'm back here posting after nearly one and half years.  It's not that I had nothing left to say, it's that life gets in the way.  My art, family, relationship and all the normal things in everyone's lives.  Turns out, I have lots more to say on the Manos subject.  I had wanted to write a book for years but just didn't know where to start or how to go about doing it.  I put feelers out on Facebook from time to time looking for someone who could help me.  During the process, I met a very talented woman in Chicago.  I'm in Oregon and I love how social media and technology opens previous boundaries of communication, because she is perfect, and more than anyone I was hoping for.  She is an accomplished editor of many years and a published author of four books.  She's also a huge Manos fan and has become a good friend.  Together, we are co-authoring "Little Debbie Reveals All.  The Untold Story Of Manos: The Hands Of Fate", a behind the scenes book of my favorite family film.  Speaking of my own family, of course.   Laura Mazzuca Toops and I began in October and are well on our way to getting the book done.  We have found a fabulous publisher with Bear Manor Media.  My personal goal is to be done with the manuscript by the end of this summer and hope the book can be published by the beginning of 2016.
When we began, I thought it would be just about my memories and my dad's and maybe memories of a couple other folks I already knew.  This thing has grown into so much more.  I have done a tremendous amount of research and have unearthed so many things I had not previously known.  I have discovered other things I thought I knew and was wrong about.  This is truly a labor of love and I can't wait to share it with you.  And, in case you didn't know already.  2016 is also the 50th year anniversary of Manos: The Hands of Fate.   The Hands of Fate have a life of their own and it is the will of Manos this book be done.