Thursday, May 17, 2018

Debbie Does Lots of New Things

This year is busier than I've ever been doing Manos related things. Maybe that's not exactly true.  This is just a time when the accumulation of previous efforts are coming to the forefront and because of it, I'm traveling more.

So far this year, I was a celebrity guest at Cinema Wasteland in Cleveland April 6, 7 and 8th. It is a small but mighty event with fervent film fans.  They love the obscure stuff and I found many Manos fans among them.  Cinema Wasteland Blogpost

My fellow producers, Tonjia Atomic, Rachel Jackson, Joe Sherlock and I  premiered Manos Returns at Crypticon Seattle on May 4th.  I also had a table as a guest for the weekend so we had a base. We all got to hang out with much of our cast and crew for a fabulously fun filled weekend.  Crypticon Seattle Blogpost
and take a listen to my newish podcast, Jackey's Hand of Horror on Soundcloud.  On this most recent episode, we discuss all things Manos Returns and Crypticon.  I'm really happy with how the podcast is evolving and I especially love this episode.

This last weekend, I was a guest at Meadowlark Comic Con, the first of it's kind in Medford Oregon.  I drove to Medford and spent Friday night so as to be prepared for the May 12th Saturday event.  Meadowlark Comic Con .  It was small as was expected for the first year but the people who came really enjoyed it.  There were a lot of kids in costume to meet the pink and yellow Power Rangers.  I saw a little hulk and even a princess or two running around.  The whole event was very well organized and I felt comfortable and welcomed.
The main celebrity guest was Mindy Sterling who is a charming and very engaging person. She loved  interacting with fans posing for photos with them.  I could kick myself for not getting a photo with her. We were both busy the whole day and then I packed up to drive home right after. (The next day was Mother's Day and my kids had plans)

.  Although I didn't get to visit with her much, she did agree to interview with me for my Jackey's Hand of Horror Podcast on an upcoming episode.  I can't wait to chat with her and talk about her career and life.

This is coming right up on Saturday May 26  Destiny City Freaky Con I will be there along with the producers of Manos Returns from 4 to 8 pm at Destiny City Comics in Tacoma Washington and then for a Manos Returns Screening at The Grand Cinema at 11pm  Manos Returns Screening  Will be a blast watching it again with an audience and this time in a real theater!

Here is another project that I am hoping comes to fruition. A web series titled Manos: The Debbie Chronicles.  Will keep you posted as the news comes my way.  If the kick starter for Candivan succeeds...This will happen.
Manos: The Debbie Chronicles Web Series

The new Bigfoot film Primal Rage Bigfoot Reborn is now available for rent on Amazon.  I had a small part, got most of my family in as extras and got to be a location coordinator.  It's a small thing but I was honored to be invited.  If you watch it, our scenes involve the tipi.

and... here's something else in the works. A new comic book creation by Pulsar Entertainment.  I am planning to be at San Diego Comic Con as part of their booth and to promote the project.  Right now, they have launched a contest, so, if you know anyone talented in the arena of the comic book world, here's something that may be of interest.  Manos: The Debbie Chronicles Comic Book Contest .  The winner gets some cash and a pass to San Diego Comic Con.  Hope to see you there.

One other thing I am just getting organized to do, is to write a screenplay based on my book, Growing Up With Manos The Hands of Fate  How I was the child start of the worst movie ever made and lived to tell the story.  I am inspired by both I, Tonya and The Disaster Artist.  The back story of Manos is every bit as interesting, and I think, pretty damn funny.  While you're waiting for this new idea, you can order a personalized and signed copy of my book from me   $23. includes shipping within the U.S.

As busy I am with all these things, I've still got to do other things as well, to make a living. As creative people know, you throw a whole lot out and hope some sticks.  I'm still teaching some painting classes and need to get back to creating new art.  It all goes in waves, but overall, I lead a pretty interesting existence and wouldn't have that part of it any other way.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Manos Returns World Premiere at Crypticon Seattle

If you are a regular here, you know I try to write and post on Torgo Tuesday's.  However this week, Torgo is way slower than usual and we are going to call this a Torgo Thursday.  Doesn't have quite the same ring to it but it's the best I can do this week.

Last weekend, me and nearly the whole Manos Returns cast and crew went to Crypticon Seattle for the World Premiere of Manos Returns.  I cannot speak for anyone else, but it has taken nearly all week to recover.  We had just so much fun, and if I'm going to be traveling as much as I expect to in the future, I had better learn to pace myself better.
                                                         Me with director Tonjia Atomic

I arrived at the Seattle Doubletree Hotel on Friday May 4th in the afternoon to set up my table and to meet up with others I knew were coming. There was surprise after surprise when people I wasn't expecting arrived as well, like Steven Shields, our Torgo

 Danielle Daggarty who plays Clara along with Nuria Aguilar who plays Pat
 and our Director of Photography, Joe Sherlock

.  Our wives were there too and crew members that traveled from long distances.  Other friends and supporter continued to announce themselves as the afternoon ended and evening came.  I felt there was a perpetual look of surprise on my face and I reminded myself often to live in the moment and absorb all that was happening.   Even Diane Mahree who played Maggie in both the original and this film drove all the way from her home in Colorado.

                            Somehow, someone had the presence of mind to get a group shot.
A large part of the cast and crew of "Manos Returns" after the premier showing of the film at Crypticon Seattle on Friday night! With, l. to r., Milton and Myron Jenkins Maggies Ghosts, Donna Rooney P.A, Emily Watson wife, Stephanie J. Lunceford  wife, Nuria Aguilar Pat, Dale Wilson P.A., Rachel Jackson Assistant Director, Joe Sherlock Director of Photography, Jackey Neyman Jones Debbie and Producer, Tonjia Atomic Director, Christopher Barnes Jay, Derek Singer Ghost, Steven Shields Torgo, Danielle Daggerty Clara, Christina Pezzo Nicki, and Bryan Jennings Sheriff. 

and a nice photo of some of the ladies of Manos Returns
Nuria Aguilar,  Jackey Neyman Jones, Christina Pezzo, Rachel Jackson, Tonjia Atomic

I even got to hang out with uber MST3k fans and their Crow and Tom Servo

 The screening was scheduled for 9 pm that night and when we showed up, there was a large group already waiting.  I was told later that the venue had to bring in about 20 more chairs to accommodate them all.
                                                                      Here they are
I had been excited about the screening but not at all nervous because I was so proud of the work everyone did to make this film happen.  At that point, I felt satisfied and wasn't dependent on the audience to validate our efforts but I do have to say it was  pretty incredible feeling when we watched it together and I got to experience the first audience firsthand.
They were so wonderful.  They laughed when we hoped they would, clapped and were just so engaged from beginning to end.  I'm sure every audience won't be this loving but I definitely count this as a very good sign.  For the rest of the weekend, they sought us out to let us know how much they enjoyed it.  We cannot wait to share it with everyone.  As of now, we are working on distribution and will announce all over the place when it is available on DVD.   In the meantime, if you know a venue near you where we can screen Manos Returns, please let me know either here or on facebook at Manos Returns.  We would love to bring it to you and all Manos fans.

On Saturday May 26th we have a screening scheduled in Tacoma, Washington at the Grand Cinema at 11:00 pm. Manos Returns at The Grand Cinema We will announce other screenings and news as it is available.

I will be a guest this coming Saturday May 12th in Medford Oregon for a one day event Meadowlark Comic Con If you live near the area, please come visit and check out the other great guests and events for this new show.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Full Circle with Manos

Manos Returns has taken a while to return, but considering we were writng a script and running a Kickstarter less than two and a half years ago and that now we have a completed project on budget?  Now that's a pretty good achievement.  I'm so proud that we delivered the online link to our Kickstarter backers before anyone else gets to see promised, and  proud of my production team and our cast and crew.  Not only did we deliver as we said we would, we made a good film.  Although, we had a pretty good idea, we are happy our backers have confirmed, and now, I cannot wait to share at Crypticon Seattle this Friday night for the World Premiere of Manos Returns.

Manos Returns World Premiere

The whole project began with the idea of bringing together the remaining original actors and giving them the opportunity to do something better than the film that made them famous, and having an opportunity to connect with the long lived fan base.  The Master was on board and we were blessed to get his part filmed while he was still strong, We were so fortunate to be able to celebrate him and give him an idea of how much he is appreciated at our Manos Returns cast and crew party. 

Diane Mahree came to play Maggie again

and we got Bryan Jennings, son of the original sheriff to be our sheriff.

We even found the soundtrack vocalist Nicki Mathis to come recreate a couple of the original songs like 

Forgetting You

The Master in the limelight

Today, as I pack and get ready to head to Seattle, I am reminded of where this whole journey began.  On that first premiere night in  November 1966, no one could ever had imagined where things might go from there. 

In the Spring of 1966 a low budget movie was filmed in the desert outside El Paso Texas with a group of community theater actors and a guy with a script and a rented camera.  In  November of the same year, the finished film premiered downtown El Paso at the beautifully classic Capri Theatre. Everyone was there.  The Mayor, the police chief and his wife, the press.  The writer, director and star of the film Hal Warren had thought of everything.  In the week before, he had displayed The Master's robe, the painting and a few other props at the local Luby's restaurant.  Chances are, the display just confused the "SundayGoingToDinner" crowd.  The night of the premiere, Hal had spotlights in front of the theatre that he had borrowed from the local car dealership. The lights scanned the sky while the autograph seekers were seeking someone important. Hal had hired the small non english speaking Native born children who usually made a living selling gum or washing windshields downtown on the Mexican border.  He supplied them with small pads of paper and stubby pencils in order to collect the prized autographs.  Hal had a red carpet from the front of the theatre to the street and rented a limo to transport the actors to the front of the theatre.  One limo... We all were instructed to wait in the alley behind the theatre while the limo came around and picked up a few at a time and dropped us off on the red carpet with the autograph seekers. I was only seven at the time, but I remember thinking "Am I the only one who realizes how ridiculous this is?"  My mom and I, and obviousy all the other women, had spent the day in the beauty parlor getting prepared for this momentous occasion so there were photos taken outside in the spotlights before everyone went in and took their seats.  We got one really nice promo shot inside the theatre before the lights went down. I love this moment frozen in time before the film began, when we all, collectively finally realized just what we had got ourselves into.  

As I reflect on that time of 52 years ago, I cherish all that the original film has inspired, and the journey I have been privileged to travel.  I hope you are enjoying it too.