Horror conventions are the greatest things ever for a movie fan. Do you have to be a diehard horror fan or a gorehound to enjoy yourself? No. The thing about these events that makes them so popular is diversity. There's got to be something in it for everyone. The guests have to come from a wide range of horror sub-genres, and the vendors all need to have something different than what's at the table across from them. Films, friends, shopping, Q&A's, and meeting celebrities of every caliber are what compose a convention.
Chicago has been home to many conventions each year, and the next one up is DAYS OF THE DEAD to be held in Schaumburg, IL on November 16th-18th. Some fans have had the dilemma of having to choose between this and another great convention, HorrorHound, held the same weekend in Indianapolis. Since Jamie Lee Curtis will be having a one-time-only convention appearance in Indy, fans have been divided on what to do. Not a horrible problem to have, right? The Midwest horror fan is a lucky one right now.
The guest lineup at Days of the Dead is fantastic. There's a Fright Night reunion with all the major cast members, a handful of mini-reunions (They Live with wrestling legend “Rowdy” Roddy Piper and mother freaking Keith David, anyone?), rock and roll legends, the ladies of several Nightmare On Elm Street movies, and the amazing Mary Woronov! Mary has graced the screen in many genre favorites, such as Eating Raoul, Death Race 2000, Hollywood Boulevard, Warlock, Rock ‘n’ Roll High School, Chopping Mall, Night of the Comet, TerrorVision, The Devil's Rejects, and The House of the Devil! Seriously. If you attend this festival, please make sure to meet Mary Woronov!
If your lifelong dream is to write screenplays for horror movies, I strongly suggest you make a quick beeline to the guests who do this for a living and are quite successful at it. They may have some tips for you. I wouldn't recommend bringing your 5,000 page drafts for them to read, but it wouldn't hurt to ask for a simple piece of advice. Todd Farmer both wrote and had a role in Drive Angry 3D, My Bloody Valentine 3D, and Jason X. Patrick Melton and Marcus Dunstan wrote Feast 1-3, Piranha 3DD, The Collector, The Collection, and Saw films 4-7. Dunstan also directed the Collector series. These guys know what's up. They're hot tickets in horror-land, so be sure to say hi.
Industrial goth and dark music fans may be interested to meet Nivek Ogre of Skinny Puppy, one of the greatest bands of all time. Okay, let me clarify. It's one of the greatest bands of all time in the eyes of this particular blogger. This band bypasses being labeled as any distinct type of music. Unique, experimental, and forever addictive. Ogre's also had key roles in these genre films: Repo! The Genetic Opera, 2001 Maniacs: Field of Screams, The Devil's Carnival, upcoming film Scream Park, and a lovely Poe-inspired short film by Staci Layne Wilson titled, “The Key to Annabel Lee.”
Friday hours are 5pm-11pm with a “Monsters Ball” following after close. Saturday hours are 11am-7pm starting with a screening of The Collection at noon, plus a tattoo contest, costume contest, Peter Criss VIP party, convention VIP party, and burlesque show with karaoke and more at night. Sunday hours are 11am-5pm starting with a Fright Night panel at noon.