TrailerWatch: Ryan Reynolds loses consciousness in Self/less

selfless teaserPeople get transplants every day.  But what about getting your entire “self” transplanted into another body?  Welcome to Self/less

Looks intriguing.  Self/less hits theaters July 31, 2015. Wanna know more?  Check out the trailer below.  Here’s the official word:


In Theaters Nationwide Summer 2015

In this provocative psychological science fiction thriller, an extremely wealthy man (Academy Award winner Ben Kingsley) dying from cancer undergoes a radical medical procedure that transfers his consciousness into the body of a healthy young man (Ryan Reynolds). But all is not as it seems when he starts to uncover the mystery of the body’s origin and the organization that will kill to protect its cause.

Director: Tarsem Singh (“The Cell”, “Immortals”)
Writers: Alex Pastor & David Pastor (“Carriers,” “The Last Days”)
Starring: Ryan Reynolds (“Deadpool”), Natalie Martinez (“Secrets and Lies”), Matthew Goode (“The Good Wife,” “The Imitation Game”) Victor Garber (“The Flash”), Derek Luke (“Empire”), Michelle Dockery (“Downton Abbey”), and Academy Award winner Ben Kingsley
Producers: Ram Bergman, James D. Stern, Peter Schlessel

Official Site | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Official Trailer

Baltimore Screening Pass-palooza: Cinderella

Cinderella live onesheetNo, they didn’t re-release the classic animated version.  (Though that’d be pretty awesome, right?)  This Cinderella is a live-action film, with a cool cast.  Don’t believe me?  Just read:

The story of “Cinderella” follows the fortunes of young Ella (Lily James) whose merchant father remarries following the death of her mother. Eager to support her loving father, Ella welcomes her new Stepmother (Cate Blanchett) and her daughters Anastasia (Holliday Grainger) and Drisella (Sophie McShera) into the family home. But, when Ella’s father unexpectedly passes away, she finds herself at the mercy of a jealous and cruel new family. Soon, she is forced to become their servant, disrespected, covered in ashes and spitefully renamed Cinderella. Yet, despite the cruelty inflicted upon her, Ella will not give in to despair nor despise those who mistreat her, and she continues to remain positive, determined to honor her mother’s dying words and to “have courage and be kind.”

When Ella meets a dashing stranger in the woods, unaware that he is really the Prince (Richard Madden) and not merely Kit, an apprentice at the palace, she believes she has finally found a kindred soul. It appears her fortunes may be about to change when the King (Derek Jacobi) summons all maidens in the kingdom to attend a royal ball at the palace, raising Ella’s hopes of once again encountering the charming Kit. Alas, her Stepmother forbids her to attend and callously destroys her dress. Meanwhile, the calculating Grand Duke (Stellan Skarsgård) devises a plan to thwart the Prince’s hopes of reuniting with Ella and enlists the support of the devious Stepmother. But, as in all good fairy tales, help is at hand. Soon, a kindly beggar woman (Helena Bonham Carter) steps forward and, armed with a pumpkin, a few mice and a magic wand, changes Cinderella’s life forever.

Kinda stoked that Bonham Carter is playing the Fairy Godmother.  Know what else I’m stoked for?  FROZEN FEVER!!!  That’s right, with this screening you’ll also get to see Elsa and Anna in the brand-new Frozen short.

You know you want this.  So read on, already!

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Book Review — Dark Screams: Volume 2

Dark Screams 2 cover

Nutshell: Five fun-to-read stories by top notch horror scribes. How can you lose? The answer; you can’t. Though there’s a small hiccup thrown into the mix, this anthology is an easy, enjoyable read. Whether you go through bit by bit, or gobble it up in one sitting, DSv2 is a fun way for a horror fan to spend some time. B+

Spooky short story collections.  My heroin.  I can’t stay away.  I’ve been digging in for years, from King to Barker to George R.R. Martin to Algernon Blackwood.  The Shadows series, Metahorror, The Skin Trade, I Shudder At Your Touch, the excellent and sorely missed Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror, and so many more.  I gobble ‘em up.  So this review was a given; I needed to get my paws on this.  And I’m not disappointed.

While not 100% spooky, there’s more than enough creepy mystery and tension in Volume Two to pleasantly entertain short story fans, even if your tastes run to more in-your-face horror.  Plus, in Norman Prentiss and Shawntelle Madison, I’ve found two new authors I’m interested in reading more of.  Not too shabby.

Editors Brian James Freeman and Richard Chizmar don’t bother with stories that would only serve as padding; they cut to the bone and deliver a handful of entertaining tales.  Five, to be exact.  And here’s my two cents on each:
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Newswire: The Day Leonard Nimoy Created Spock’s Neck-Pinch

A little something to help everyone through the pain of losing such a wonderful man.

Marc Cushman Spock Nerve Pinch

Spock uses the Vulcan nerve-pinch in “A Taste of Armageddon” (PRNewsFoto/Marc Cushman)


Author Marc Cushman’s Book Series Takes You On a Trek Back in Time

LOS ANGELES, March 3, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Leonard Nimoy was who Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry had in mind when he first imagined Mr. Spock, but it was Nimoy’s contributions that helped make the Vulcan so extraordinary. A serious thinker and method actor, Nimoy identified with and became very protective of Spock, often adding to Roddenberry’s characterization.

In Marc Cushman’s Saturn Award winning book series, These Are the Voyages, there are many instances of his imprints, such as the Vulcan Neck-Pinch.

It was Tuesday, June 21, 1966, the sixth day of filming on “The Enemy Within.” Leonard Nimoy was bothered by something in the script. He had not been able to get the producers to hear his concern, so he decided to take arbitrary action. In this episode, a transporter malfunction created a double for Captain Kirk, who then attacked crew members and was now hunted down to the engineering decks. The stage direction in the shooting script said Spock “lunges out from behind one of the generators and kayoes the double.” Nimoy later recalled, “The scene jarred me when I first read it. It seemed more appropriate for the Old West than the 23rd Century.”

Near the time of this production, while being interviewed on set by a newspaper writer, Nimoy said, “Although we are essentially a humanistic show, the Enterprise is heavily armed and a lot of guns get shown. My way of avoiding participation in the violence was the Spock Pinch. I decided that Vulcans knew so much about the human anatomy that they could knock out an enemy just by pinching a nerve in the neck and the shoulders.”

On that sixth day of filming, Nimoy approached director Leo Penn with his idea. William Shatner had been listening in, so when Penn asked for a demonstration, he quickly volunteered to be the guinea pig. Nimoy recalled, “I applied pressure to the juncture of Bill’s neck and shoulder, and he most convincingly fell into an unconscious heap on the floor. Thus the famous neck pinch was born, in part because of Bill Shatner’s talent for fainting on cue.”

The “pinch” stayed, but had not been cleared by the front office. Producers Gene Roddenberry, Robert Justman, and John D.F. Black had no idea that Nimoy, Shatner and Penn had, behind their backs, made a substantial change to the character of Spock and the format of Star Trek. They found out the next day while viewing the dailies. Roddenberry and his creative staff couldn’t help but embrace the idea and immediately began looking for ways to use the pinch in future episodes.

Although he was warned to not make decisions without approval again Nimoy continued to be vigilant of Spock’s integrity. Integrity that not only Nimoy expected, but what he knew the fans wanted, as well. And that’s only logical.

About Marc Cushman
Marc Cushman is an author and Los Angeles based screenwriter and director. His television writing assignments include scripts for Star Trek: The Next Generation, Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction, and Diagnosis: Murder. His feature film credits include Desperately Seeking Paul McCartney, The Magic of Christmas, and In The Eyes Of A Killer. As a writer/producer, Marc created and served as show runner for two TV series: the cult comedy Channel K and its spin-off, the original Bachelor Pad. Marc is the author of the “biography of a TV show,” I Spy: A History Of The Groundbreaking Television Series (McFarland & Co., 2007), and the definitive examination of the making of the original Star Trek series, with his 1,700 page, three-volume set, These Are The Voyages, TOS.

Learn more at

And the 2014 Ghastly Awards winners are…

ghastlyGreat crop of nominees this year, so a great crop of winners. Congratulations to all!

The 2014 Ghastly Award Winners

The Ghastly Award Judges are proud to announce the Winners of the 2014 Ghastly Awards. The Ghastly Award Judges chose the Nominees from the books submitted by Comic Creators and Publishers throughout 2014. Winners were voted on by the Judges, Comic Book Creators, Publishers and the Fans. The Ghastly Judicial Panel congratulates all 2014 Winners and Nominees. It is an honor to be recognized by your fellow professionals for such outstanding work in horror comics.

The 2014 Winners are:
Best Ongoing Title

Rachel Rising
(Abstract Studios)

Best Limited Series

Deadworld: Restoration
(IDW Publishing)

Best One-Shot

Edgar Allan Poe’s Morella and the
Murders in the Rue Morgue

(Dark Horse Comics)

Best Anthology

In the Dark
(Tiny Behemoth Press / IDW Publishing)

Best Short Story in an Anthology

Beneath the Surface
(Blokes Terrible Tomb of Terror #10)

Best OGN

Monsters & Other Stories
(Dark Horse Comics

Best Archival Collection

Collection of previously released material / Historical Book on Horror Comics

The Chilling Archives of Horror Comics: The Worst of Eerie Publications
(IDW Publishing/Yoe Books)
Best Writer

Terry Moore
(Rachel Rising)

Best Artist

Francesco Francavilla
(Afterlife with Archie)

Best Inker

Mike Wolfer/Dan Parsons
(The Curse of Ragdoll)

Best Letterer

Terry Moore
(Rachel Rising)

Best Colorist

Jay Fotos
(’68 Rule of War, ’68 Homefront, Wraith: Welcome to Christmasland)

Best Web ComicGraveyard Gang
(http://www.thegraveyardgang.comBest Horror Comic CoverFan voting determined the Winner’68 Rule of War #1
(Artist Nat Jones)

Hall of Fame Inductees

Al Hewetson

Jack Davis

Normanton Award Honoree

Presented for their commitment to carrying on the legacy of
Horror Comics for generations to come

Peter Normanton

Decapitated Dan, Mike Howlett, Belinda “Spaced” McNeill, Lonnie Nadler, Bree Ogden,Steve Banes,Denise Dutton, Daniel Viney
Founded in 2011 by Decapitated Dan with the help of Steve Banes, Mike Howlett, Lonnie Nadler and Mykal Banta, the Ghastly Awards recognize outstanding achievements in Horror Comics over a range of 15 different categories. The nominees are chosen by other horror comic book professionals and winners are chosen by a panel of judges.
The Awards were named for acclaimed comics creator “Ghastly” Graham Ingels.
Starting in 2013 the Ghastly Awards switched over to a Submission based process. Comic Publishers and Creators can submit their books for nomination consideration throughout the calendar year. The top five nominees in each category will be chosen by the Judges, and will then be voted on by the Judges, Creators and Fans to decide the winners.
The Ghastly Award Judges work strictly on a volunteer basis. There is no paid staff and the awards are completely funded from the generous donations of its sponsors listed below. Sponsorship does not guarantee, or influence Ghastly Awards Nominations or Winners in any way. Sponsorship is solely used to help raise funds for the Awards and costs of running the Awards on a yearly basis. 

Baltimore Screening Pass-palooza: The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel!

TSBEMHWanna catch a movie Monday night?  Here’s a chance to grab screening passes for The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel!  Synopsis?  Right this way…

THE SECOND BEST EXOTIC MARIGOLD HOTEL is the expansionist dream of Sonny (Dev Patel), and it’s making more claims on his time than he has available, considering his imminent marriage to the love of his life, Sunaina (Tina Desai).  Sonny has his eye on a promising property now that his first venture, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel for the Elderly and Beautiful, has only a single remaining vacancy – posing a rooming predicament for fresh arrivals Guy (Richard Gere) and Lavinia (Tamsin Greig). Evelyn and Douglas (Judi Dench and Bill Nighy) have now joined the Jaipur workforce, and are wondering where their regular dates for Chilla pancakes will lead, while Norman and Carol (Ronald Pickup and Diana Hardcastle) are negotiating the tricky waters of an exclusive relationship, as Madge (Celia Imrie) juggles two eligible and very wealthy suitors. Perhaps the only one who may know the answers is newly installed co-manager of the hotel, Muriel (Maggie Smith), the keeper of everyone’s secrets. As the demands of a traditional Indian wedding threaten to engulf them all, an unexpected way forward presents itself.

Want passes?  Read on…

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Book Review: The Awesome

the awesome cover

Nutshell: The Awesome is, quite simply, awesome.  A fun horror/fantasy mythology blends with believable teen dialogue and characters that you don’t just care about, you want to hang out with.  Where’s book 2, already? Grade: A

If Sam and Dean Winchester’s family business wasn’t a secret, but a career path just like any other? Then you’d have the world of The Awesome. Well, maybe not exactly like any other, but one that’s Federally licensed and known (if not universally understood or approved.) Margaret Jane  — call her Maggie — Cunningham is a 17-year-old hunter’s apprentice, her mom Janice being the one she’s apprenticed to.  Janice and Maggie have been working the family business for years now, and there’s only one thing stopping Maggie from hitting Journeyman level; losing her virginity.  You see, vampires go crazy for virgins (literally stark raving mad), so until Maggie sheds her V-card, she’s on the bench as far as better job opportunities go.  But her friend Julie has a cousin named Ian…

First things first; NO, this isn’t a soppy paranormal romance.  And there’s no love triangle, unrequited longing or any of that crap.  Maggie is no wallflower, and The Awesome isn’t your typical YA love story.  Because love is only one facet of the overall plot.  The many different subplots are layered well, because author Eva Darrows is an A+ storyteller. There’s an easy, hanging-out-with-your-bestie flow of dialogue, and just enough horror/fantasy elements to keep things weird in the best possible way.

Plus, Darrows has a killer knack for character development.  Page one, and I’m already loving Maggie. She’s the BFF my high school self would have killed to have. Tough but self-aware, funny but not silly, sharp as a tack. It’s a great opener, and things stay on that course throughout.  The Awesome grabs you quick and straps you in for a fun ride. Before the first half I was already hoping this would be the start of a cool, multi-volume, series.
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