Monsterpalooza — WOW!

Karloff as The Monster

WOW! Monsterpalooza, in only its third year, hit capacity yesterday afternoon! The Fire Marshall had to close admissions to the event, allowing members of the long line to get in only when other attendees left.

Continuing my “Old Home Week”, old friends Rick Baker, Mick Garris, Jon Favreau, Joe Dante, Richard Jones and many other celebrities of All Things Monster stopped by my booth yesterday. I took a quick break to say “Hi!” to my friends the wonderful Chiodo Brothers.Mike Hill has another amazing display with a gigantic Karloff Frankenstein Monster head, and full-sized figures of Oliver Reed’s werewolf, Henry Hull’s werewolf and Charles Laughton’s Hunchback.

After the show I chatted with Roger Corman (thanking him for buying my first screenplay and for hiring me to do several of his company’s movie posters back in the day) over at the Famous Monsters Film Festival in Beverly Hills. I filled him in on my career; he lit up when I mentioned Pan’s Labyrinth, one of his favorite films of recent times. Samantha Holmes and I had dinner with the charming Lugosi family (not only do they drink wine, Dracula fans, they produce it and sell it) and Carla Laemmle (101 years old and still going strong), who speaks the first line in Dracula and was a ballerina in the Lon Chaney Phantom of the Opera.

If you’re going over to Monsterpalooza today, get there early (open 11:00AM – 6:00 PM)!

12 Responses to “Monsterpalooza — WOW!”

  1. Aaron says:

    Howdy Mr. Stout,
    So apart from the Curse of the Werewolf figure (which I would love to have seen) were there any other representatives of Hammer Films? Also, did you do the Frankenstein and Lugosi Dracula portraits just for these shows? Get some inspiration for another Monster sketchbook?

    Speaking of monsters I suppose you saw the Ray Harryhausen documentary that was announced recently.

    Best Wishes,
    Aaron

  2. Jake says:

    Hey Bill,

    I saw a picture of your table from this show. There was a red hardcover book with a small white cover. What was it? I guess I need it now. đŸ™‚

  3. Bill says:

    Hi Aaron,
    I’m sure there were some more Hammer icons, but I only did a quick run-through of the show then got back to my booth, so I don’t have any specific recollections.

    BTW, a magnificent Frankenstein Monster sitting in his huge chair was added later by Mike Hill to his booth display.

    The Dracula and Frankenstein monster portraits were painted a few years ago. I deeply yearned to possess a Basil Gogos classic monster painting. Figuring I could never afford one, I painted a batch for myself (Frankenstein, Dracula, The Mummy, The Wolfman, The Phantom of the Opera and The Creature from the Black Lagoon). A Louisville collector bought the Frankenstein; UK entertainment legend Jonathan Ross purchased the rest of them at Comic-Con, plus I painted another Frankenstein for his set since the first one had already been purchased.

    I am working on Monsters Sketchbook Volume 3, as well as a sketchbook tribute to Willis O’Brien (similar to my Harryhausen tribute). No, I haven’t heard about the new Harryhausen doc.

    Hi Jake,
    That’s my award-winning book Abu and the 7 Marvels, written by the great Richard Matheson. YIKES! I just realized it’s not on my online store catalogue! I’ll try to rectify that situation today. I’m really proud of that gorgeous tome; it’s Richard Matheson’s only children’s book. Yes, you do indeed need it. đŸ˜‰

  4. Aaron says:

    Mr. Stout,

    Here’s a link to the Harryhausen trailer from You tube:

  5. Jake says:

    Sounds great! I can’t wait to snag it. Please post something when you make it available for sale.

    Thanks, Jake

  6. Noone else bit but I will. Screenplay? First? I’m interested in the titles and were any produced? Maybe this is worth a whole post?

    Just curious. This is an aspect of your work I wasn’t aware of.

    Thanks. Sounds like I missed an epic event.

  7. Aaron says:

    So any word on when the Monsters 3 and Willis O’Brien sketchbooks will be available?

  8. Bill says:

    Hi Andy,
    Maybe not a whole post but certainly part of a chapter of the forthcoming book on my filmwork (“forthcoming” as in over a year or two from now).

    My first screenplay was a sword and sorcery tale entitled Kain of Dark Planet. I was asked to write it by director John Broderick. I envisioned David Carradine in the lead. Roger Corman bought it for John to direct. Broderick made it down in Argentina reusing sets from a Corman film shot down there. I think the budget was $80,000 ($800,000? I know it was low). To my delight, David Carradine was indeed cast in the lead.

    Roger changed the title to The Warrior and the Sorceress. When I called Roger’s attention to the fact that there is no sorceress in the story, he explained.

    “Bill; that’s not important. What’s important is that we have ‘sorceress’ in the title so that we can have a sexy sorceress on the poster. The object of the title and poster is to fill theater seats with butts. Once we get them in the theater, it doesn’t matter whether or not there’s a sorceress in the movie.”

    To my horror, while off in Argentina, John made substantial changes to my screenplay without my permission. He took my original story with lots of innovative stuff never before seen in films (the sword & sorcery genre had only just begun to be explored on film, beginning with my work on the first Conan film) and turned it into a sword & sorcery plagiarism of Kurosawa’s Yojimbo (which had already been remade as the western known as A Fistful of Dollars).

    I have written several subsequent screenplays, including a Conan sequel and a Return of the Living Dead sequel (as did apparently everyone who worked on that movie). The sale of a dinosaur film script (unproduced) to Jim Henson and Warner Brothers got me into the Writers Guild of America. My outline for the sequel to The 8th Voyage of Sinbad – Return to Colossa, co-written with Ray Harryhausen, will appear in the book Ray Harryhausen–Master of Magicks Volume One along with some of my concept designs for the project.

    I’m pretty proud of Where Is Thy Sting?, an episode I wrote for the recent Godzilla animated series a few years ago.

    Despite my age (there’s a huge bias against screenwriters who are over 40), I continue to write scripts for movies I’d like to see.

    Hi Aaron,
    Not any time soon — I’m too busy with other projects right now, including my two murals for the San Diego Zoo.

  9. Aaron says:

    Dear Mr. Stout,

    Any chance we can get a peek at preliminaries for those zoo murals here?
    What about the concept designs for the 8th Voyage of Sinbad?
    When I was young my friends and I would make up stories for a Sinbad sequel (this was before The Golden Voyage of Sinbad was released) and one of mine involved a return to Colossa. I called it Sinbad and the Island of the Cyclops. Spent a lot of time leaning forward from the hips with my arms cocked at the elbow at hip level imitating various Harryhausen creations.

  10. jim says:

    Whaaaaat? There are screenwriters over 40?!!
    Actually, I had seen the new action movie “Hanna” and , though it was well made, many of the elements lead back to other films- La Femme Nikita,The Professional, the Bourne series, Kick Ass. It was all very slick with some good performances, but if I’m sitting in the theatre ticking off various similar films in my head you’ve lost the suspension of belief.
    I guess 40 plus writers try to be too original. Keep writing those screenplays.

  11. John says:

    It would be great to see the dinosaur script adapted for another format, or maybe team with the Henson Company for an animated version.

  12. Bill says:

    Hi Aaron:
    Not sure about revealing the mural pencils yet; I’d have to check with the San Diego Zoo about that. Maybe the rejected designs would be OK…

    The concept designs and script outline should appear in Ray Harryhausen – Master of Magicks Volume One.

    Hi Jim:
    Yup; I’m still writing my screenplays. I’m working on a western and an historical paleontological piece. Maybe if I get one of my kids to submit them and pass them off as theirs…

    Hi John:
    I would love to adapt my Henson script to book form. The difficulty would be dealing with Warner Brothers, who I believe own the rights to the story. I would adapt the version in which they don’t talk…

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