Monday, September 10, 2012

HorrorHound Indy 2012

This past weekend my pal KW Monster and I went to the semi-annual HorrorHound convention in Indianapolis.

For me the highlight of the convention was a reunion of most of the cast of ALIENS, one of my hands down all-time favorite movies. Among the stars in attendance was Jenette Goldstein, who of course played Lt. Vasquez, my favorite character from the movie.

I got to meet and chat with Ms. Goldstein, which was a lot of fun. That's me with her above, her normal sized head dwarfed by my giant one. She was much tinier than I expected, which seems to be the norm whenever I meet female celebrities. Despite the fact that actors appear to be sixty feet tall on the movie screen, they're generally not that big in real life.

If you look just behind me you can see actor Mark Ralston. He played Drake, Vasquez's smart gun partner. And if you look really close just behind my right arm you can catch a glimpse of Ricco Ross, who played Private Frost in the film. Hey, I got three celebrities for the price of one photo!

Vasquez and Drake, doing what they do best.
One of the most famous scenes in ALIENS is between Vasquez and Hudson (played by Bill Paxton). In it Hudson asks, "Hey Vasquez, have you ever been mistaken for a man?" Vasquez replies, "No, have you?" Haw! So ever the wiseacre, I walked up to Ms. Goldstein's table and said Hudson's line. She looked a bit puzzled and did her best to smile politely. Heh. That's me! Making celebrities feel awkward and uncomfortable since 1993.

In addition to ALIENS, Jenette Goldstein was in two of James Cameron's other movies. She starred in Terminator 2 as John Connor's foster mom (or I guess more accurately as a copy of her).

And she was an unlucky Irish immigrant mother who politely drowned with her family in Titanic.

Since she's been in so many of Cameron's movies I said that I missed seeing her in Avatar. She said she auditioned for the role of the Na'vi Queen, but alas didn't get it.

I told Ms. Goldstein that since Michelle Rodriguez's Trudy Chacon character in Avatar was very similar to Vasquez, she should have played her mom or big sister or something. For a minute she actually looked like she was thinking about the idea. Or maybe she just wanted me to go away. All I know is that if she shows up as Michelle Rodriguez's mom in Avatar 2, I am so gonna sue for story credit.

Also in attendance from ALIENS was Michael Biehn, who played Corporal Dwayne Hicks, Lance Henrickson who played Bishop, Cynthia Dale Scott who played Corporal Dietrich. Sadly, Private Spunkmeyer wasn't there, robbing me of my chance to yell his name across the crowded room.

Carrie Henn was there as well. She of course played Newt, the only survivor of the colony on LV-426. She's grown up just a bit since 1986. Henn had no previous acting experience when she was cast as Newt; she was hired because she didn't smile as she said her lines like all the professional child actor brats that auditioned.

I would have loved to have gotten autographs and photos of the all the ALIENS cast who were there, but since I'm not independently wealthy I could only afford one.

I also chatted a bit with Timothy Balme, star of Dead Alive, or as it's known in New Zealand, Braindead. It was one of director Peter Jackson's early films from his "splatterfest" period. I've seen hundreds of gory horror movies in my time and not one of them has ever made me sick. In fact I usually end up laughing at all the gore. Dead Alive was the exception. The climax of the movie features Mr. Balme wielding a lawnmower and chopping up hundreds of zombies into a frothy, bloody paste. It was the first, and so far only time that a movie actually made me feel a little bit queasy. Mr. Balme seemed quite proud when I told him that story.

There were also several actors from the Terminator franchise in attendance. Linda Hamilton, aka Sarah Conner was there. Edward Furlong, who was John Conner in T2 and Kristanna Loken, who played the female terminator in Terminator 3 were also there. At one point Kristanna Loken left her table to take a well deserved break. As she walked away she told a nearby fan, "I'll be back!" HAW!

Elvira was there as well, but she was in some special room with a huge line and we didn't want to stand in a queue for three hours, so we didn't meet her. We caught a glimpse of her though, so I can confirm that she does indeed exist.

Local Indianapolis horror host Sammy Terry was also there. Well, sort of. Bob Carter originated the role way back in the early 1960s, and retired in recent years. His son Mark has now taken over the part and is making appearances at conventions as Sammy. Once he's got the makeup on he looks just like the original Sammy and he's got the spooky voice down as well. I saw many fans telling him how much they enjoyed watching him when they were kids. I don't think they realized they were really talking to Sammy Terry 2.0.

There was the usual dealer room full of horror and sci-fi merchandise, but I managed to restrain myself and not spend all the mortgage money on stuff I want but don't need.

There was an entire room devoted to nothing but horror masks and makeup. The Werepups people had one of the coolest booths. They make these incredibly realistic baby werewolf dolls. They looked absolutely real. They had translucent skin, realistic eyes and peach fuzz all over their little bodies. The woman in the photo above was subtly moving her sample werepup around and it looked uncannily like a real, fussy squirming baby- that just happened to be a lycanthrope. In fact one lady walked by and saw her holding the werebaby and exclaimed, "Oh my god, don't drop him!" I guess motherhood knows no species bounds.

On big surprise: I didn't spot a single Utilikilt at this show. That's definitely a first. I have to admit I was a little disappointed, as I had nothing to mock.

There were a few cosplayers there, as always. One question I have: every time I go to this show there is always at least one little kid dressed as Chucky the Homicidal Doll. Red hair, overalls, butcher knife, the works. Do their parents dress them like that and the kids don't really understand who they're supposed to be? Or are these four year olds big fans of the Chucky franchise and demand to go out dressed as their hero? Just wonderin.'

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