Sunday, February 1, 2015

Consider Phantasm Football on Super Bowl Sunday

On this Super Bowl Sunday, I ask you to consider what artist Christopher John Sztybel has suggested for the game of American football. In a 2012 post on his blog, Christopher describes his disinterest in the televised sport and his frustration with people yelling at their televisions. He then created a pretty funny piece of artwork to illustrate his thoughts! Click the artwork to your right to enlarge it.

"The team can’t hear you yelling," Christopher writes. "Nor do they really care about your undying love for them. They’re mercenaries for hire. It’d be great to raise the stakes of the game. Remember the movie Phantasm? It featured a killer ball. Had knives, drills, and a few other gadgets in it. Play with that ball and I will watch. This is a mixed media piece and was created using colored pencil, Sharpie marker, and vector art. The inspiration for the art style came from the work of Aidan Hughes."

Also... Go Seahawks!

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Wishful Thinking: Phantasm Box Set & Vinyl Soundtrack

Well, I've got potentially good news and bad news.

The bad news first. There doesn't appear to be any Region 1 Phantasm box set in the works… at least not from Scream Factory, who released a fantastic Collector's Edition of Phantasm II several years ago. It had been hoped in the wake of Scream and Anchor Bay's partnering for the Complete Halloween box set that they might team again for a Phantasm set. As many phans know, films one, three and four are currently out of print in the United States. It is unknown whether or not Anchor Bay still holds distribution rights to those entries or if they have reverted back to Don Coscarelli. It would be great if Scream were attempting misdirection here via their Twitter account, but we'll take them at their word.

Now for the potentially good news. This is strictly speculation! Death Waltz Records posted a photo of a silver sphere to their Instagram account yesterday with the quote, "You play a good game, boy, but the game is finished. Now you die."

Death Waltz is well known for producing limited edition vinyl scores for classic horror movies. Even better, they were purchased by Mondo Tees last September, who released a highly collectible Phantasm poster several years back that we know Don Coscarelli really dug. Might this be a tease for a future vinyl re-release of the original Phantasm score? Fingers crossed. Thanks to Peter Marullo for this scoop!

Friday, January 30, 2015

Fan Spotlight: Peter Marullo's Phantasm Mega-Edit

As an amateur video editor myself, there's nothing I appreciate more than seeing an ambitious phan cut together their own reworking of Phantasm. Whether they're re-incorporating deleted scenes, re-scoring the film or combining them all into one - it's fascinating to watch. Phantasm's creator also shares this interest, having publicly voiced his surprise and delight at such creations.

In this post, I want to introduce you to a good friend of mine, Peter Marullo, and show you some of his editing handiwork in bridging Phantasm II with III and Phantasm III with Oblivion. Upon watching the embedded video, I think you'll find Peter's editing makes the transition between films positively seamless.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Casting Mystery on Phantasm Ravager

Today's news brings clarification to a casting rumor and a new set photo related to that mystery. Phantasm Ravager co-producer Gigi Fast Elk Bannister took to the internet today to correct a growing rumor that Game of Thrones star Peter Dinklage had joined the cast of the new sequel. This is false and he is not associated with the production.

The character Dinklage was rumored to play, "Chunk," can be seen in the first teaser trailer looking nothing like the popular performer. Gigi referred to the real actor behind "Chunk" only as "Hedge," saying that he is a personal friend of director David Hartman. The co-producer also shared the set photo of "Hedge" you see on your right. Click the pic to enlarge.

While we still don't know exactly who "Hedge" is, we now know who he is not. It's still great to hear new official word on the sequel and always wonderful to see a new set photo.

Speaking of wild casting rumors, anyone hear the one about A. Michael Baldwin's role being recast with Brad Pitt?

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Massive Italian Phantasm Retrospective

The third issue of the online Italian-horror magazine Terre di Confine boasts a massive Phantasm retrospective. The article, which was written by di Severino Forini, is tastefully organized with beautiful full-page poster artworks and images from the films. It even contains several pages dedicated to the upcoming Phantasm Ravager. I was also delighted to spot a positive sidebar on my book, Phantasm Exhumed, among their pages.

You can read and download a PDF copy of Terre di Confine for free on their website. I don't speak Italian, but this magazine was still a joy to flip through if not only for the layout. The phantasmic fun begins on page fifty-six!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Phantasm III's Scrapped Arctic Ending?

What's this? A photo from Phantasm III's elusive scrapped arctic ending? Nah, just a pic I snagged from John Squires of "Freddy in Space" fame depicting the Tall Man braving the current Nor'easter storm terrorizing parts of the northern United States. Stay warm out there, folks. (Thanks to writer Martin Yates for the arctic ending joke!)

John writes: "It's not a serious blizzard until the Tall Man is no longer visible. We're up to his waist out there, folks!"

Monday, January 26, 2015

Rare German Phantasm III Promo Item

I've seen a lot of Phantasm collectibles, both official and unofficial. I mean A LOT. But something cropped up on eBay a few days ago that even I had never seen before. This small piece was a promotional item for the German home video release of Phantasm III, which was known to Germans as Das Böse III. Even cooler, the eBay seller had Don Coscarelli sign it in Burbank at last year's Monsterpalooza convention.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Phantasm Cast headed to Kentucky

The Phantasm crowd is being summoned for yet another reunion in 2015, this time in Lexington, Kentucky. A. Michael Baldwin, Bill Thornbury, Reggie Bannister and Gigi Fast Elk Bannister have been announced as guests for the ScareFest Horror & Paranormal Convention happening this September 11-13 at the Lexington Convention Center. With the show still a long eight months away, there are surely plenty of guest announcements yet to come. A little silver sphere whispered to me recently that this fine Phantasm reunion may grow larger yet - time will tell!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Reggie and Tall Man Lego Figures!

You've seen the Ghostbusters Lego set. You may even have seen the Back to the Future Lego set. But have you ever seen a Phantasm Lego set?? Yeah, me neither. Phantasm is one of six properties left on the planet that Lego has yet to license from, but no matter. Leave it to Phantasm's followers to make their own. I posted in 2011 about a phan-made custom Tall Man Lego figure, but this is my first time seeing a Reggie to go along with a Tall Man. Head inside this post to see close-up pictures of this phantastic creation!

Friday, January 23, 2015

Best Ravager Teaser Reaction Video Ever

Happy Friday, everyone! Today I want to share with you what is probably the funniest Phantasm Ravager teaser reaction video you will ever see. It might also be the shortest one you see. YouTuber M.H. Smith gives his brief impression of the new sequel in this quick twenty-eight second video. Be sure to stay until the end because, just like in superhero movies, there's something waiting for you after the credits.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Phantasm Sounds: That familiar humming

"There's this door down here. 
And I bet there's something behind it."

The vibrating hum of the spacegate has remained an unforgettable auditory hallmark of the Phantasm series from the moment Mike Pearson first dared to enter Morningside Mortaury. The sound effect was so unique that it was included on the film's soundtrack album. Last March, YouTube user "Phantasmed" managed to recreate that complex sound using a Yahama EX7 Synthesizer. They write that their new spacegate hum was the combination of six different sounds that span multiple octaves.

Lucky for us, "Phantasmed" has uploaded their creation to the video sharing site... and it's thirty-five minutes long! That's right... feel free to hit play on this video and go about your daily routine pretending you're in a Phantasm movie. Whether reading, tidying up, making dinner or watching television, having a thirty-five minute loop of the spacegate hum will surely make you feel as though you're living Phantasm.... and probably make you far more reluctant to answer that heavy knock at the door lest it be someone tall.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

German Phantasm Trailer: Das Böse

You've probably seen the original theatrical trailer for Phantasm (the one that continually asked what Phantasm was), but have you ever seen a trailer for the film's German release, Das Böse? It plays a little differently than the American preview, barely containing any Tall Man until the last moments. It does, however, feature the Lady in Lavender and a strategically placed black circle in order to keep the trailer bosom free. How modest.

Phantasm has remained especially popular in Germany in the decades since its first release. Both Angus Scrimm and Reggie Bannister have been warmly recieved at German horror conventions in recent years. Germany was also the first country to receive a Blu-ray box set of the entire franchise, though those transfers do not appear to have been approved by Don CoscarelliSprechen Sie Deutsch?