Category Archives: Halloween News

The latest updates and info related to our favorite holiday.

Lizzie Bordens House Is For Sale

Located in Fall River, Massachusetts, Lizzie Bordens house, where she lived after being acquitted of murder charges, is now for sale.

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The house is located at 306 French St. and has an asking price of $650,000, which is much, much higher than the city’s assessed worth of $313,200, though that price does not take into account the houses historical value.

Robert Dube has owned the property since 1980, when he bought it for $60,000. Dube attempted to subdivide the property and build a one-family home on the lot, but neighbors protested and Dube ceased the subdivision.

The home includes fourteen rooms, seven bedrooms, and two-and-a-half bathrooms. The real estate listing also describes two sunrooms, seven fireplaces, tin ceilings, a grant entry foyer, original parquet, and mahogany moldings.

This is not the same house where Lizzie Bordens parents were killed in August of 1892. That title is held by the house located on 92 Second St. in Fall River, Massachusetts.

Horror Stationary

Today’s blog post has me thinking that Halloween costumes is the wrong kind of horror business. You see, I recently stumbled upon the work of a German-based designer named Jacques Pense, who created an award-winning series of horror stationary items. From envelopes to binder rings, Pense has brought the world of horror crashing down upon the humdrum corporate world.

But here’s the kicker: they’re amazing! I could actually see mainstream American offices using these things – as long as they don’t cost an arm or a leg. If the FrightCatalog gang can get in touch with Pense, we may even include some with this year’s Haunt Club kit (no promises). Imagine the satisfaction felt from tearing a zombie’s face open and pulling out its paper guts. Oh, I’m getting goosebumps.

Anyway, without any more rambling from me, let’s get on with the horrifying eye candy:

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The Map of the Dead, the CDC, and the Zombie-Proof House: Get Ready for the Zombie Apocalypse

It’s only a matter of time until the dead rise and consume the living, and zombie costumes are no longer fun. Maybe an evil biomedical corporation will be to blame, or a mosquito-borne pathogen that breeds inside human brains. Whatever the reason, a zombie apocalypse requires a plan and an appropriate amount of emergency supplies.

map of the dead

In 2011, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released their recommendations for how a family can prepare for a zombie apocalypse. These recommendations include 1) picking a meeting place for your family to regroup in case zombies invade your home, 2) keeping an emergency kit in your house, and 3) preparing an emergency plan, which includes where you would go and who you would call if zombies started appearing outside your door step.

Sure, those are all nice and dandy, but staying alive during a zombie apocalypse is harder said than done, which is why Polish architectural design company KWK Promes created the worlds first zombie-proof home, equipped with moving walls, a shifting security perimeter, and a retractable drawbridge entrance. Combine this beast of a house with the CDCs recommendations and you’ll be sitting well during the zombie apocalypse.

map of the dead

But, according to films and books, too many people panic during a zombie apocalypse, for they did not prepare ahead of time nor do they own a zombie-proof home. These individuals either cannot find food stores, or they wander into heavily residential areas and become lunch for the local zombies.

With the Map of the Dead, however, you never again have to worry about last-minute zombie apocalypse planning. This web-based piece of software uses the Google Places API to feature specific organizations and retailers that may be useful prior to or during a zombie apocalypse.

map of the dead

The Map of the Dead showcases the following places of interest: gun store, grocery store, convenience store, hardware, liquor store, shopping mall, outdoor store, military, police, radio tower, gas station, harbor, airport, hospital, doctor, pharmacy, dentist, cemetery, and campground.

Since it is likely that the Internet will crash during a zombie apocalypse, Map of the Dead even features a print option, so you can stick that trusty information right inside your emergency kit.

Will the zombie apocalypse happen? Probably not, but it’s better to not take any risks.

Skull Carved out of Books

Artists find strange and interesting ways to reveal themselves that’s why they’re artists and Maskull Lasserre, a Canadian-born visual artist, is no different. Using old computer manuals and a plaster mold of a human skull, Lasserre created a near perfect replica of a human skull. His purpose: exploring the unexpected happenings of everyday occurrences.

Computer manuals are meant to be opened, and unless you’re a computer programmer or technician, most individuals would expect the manuals to be boring. But imagine finding a human skull carved into the manuals, rather than a list of numbers and unpronounceable techno-babble. That’s unexpected. That’s Maskull Lasserre. (This guy needs to get into the Halloween props business.)

However, even the most unexpected events have expected traits. The computer manuals, for example, are designed to contain exact and accurate information, not subjective opinions. When carving the human skull within the manuals, Lasserre paid great attention to the skulls details. In fact, the carved skull has the exact proportions of the plaster skull used as the basis for the project. An exact and accurate human skull carved into books meant to hold exact and accurate information? That’s no coincidence.

Maskull Lasserre was born in Canada, in 1978, though he spent his childhood in South Africa. He later returned to Canada and received a BFA from Mount Allison University (Visual Art and Philosophy), and an MFA from Concordia University (Sculpture). His work has been exhibited across Canada and parts of the United States, and he recently participated in the Canadian Forces War Artist Program in Afghanistan.

Ridley Scott Talks Prometheus Rating: PG-13?

Ridley Scott’s Prometheus is only months away, which means the film is entering the final weeks of post-production. The trailers are available, pictures are all over the Internet, and the hype is building.

But don’t get too excited. According to a recent interview with Empire Magazine, Ridley Scott is having issues with the film’s MPAA rating. Even though the entire Alien franchise has kept a steady R rating, Prometheus may see a theatrical release with a PG-13 rating.

“Right now I don’t know where we are,” Ridley Scott told Empire. “The question is, do you go for the PG-13, or do you go for what it should be, which is R? Financially it makes quite a difference, or the risk makes quite a difference, and yet you also have to apply the question — if you soften it, will you financially suffer? As opposed to just going for the throat and gambling. Essentially, it’s kinda R. The little bastards will still get in anyway, so what’s the difference? It’s not just about blood, it’s about ideas that are very stressful. I’m not an idiot, but I’ll do everything I can to get the most aggressive film I can.”

Before anyone gets all hot and bothered about the PG-13 and R rating difference, and that Ridley Scott seems to be selling out, let’s look at the official definitions and classifications for the ratings system. Ridley Scott may still be able to deliver an intense sci-fi thriller blood, guts, death, the whole works even with a PG-13 rating.

Taken from FilmRatings.org, here is the definitive classification for a PG-13 movie:

“Any drug use will initially require at least a PG-13 rating. More than brief nudity will require at least a PG-13 rating, but such nudity in a PG-13 rated motion picture generally will not be sexually oriented. There may be depictions of violence in a PG-13 movie, but generally not both realistic and extreme or persistent violence. A motion pictures single use of one of the harsher sexually-derived words, though only as an expletive, initially requires at least a PG-13 rating. More than one such expletive requires an R rating, as must even one of those words used in a sexual context.”

So you can swear, but only once, and not in a sexual context. You can show a nipple, but only in passing, and not in a sexual context. You can include violence, but it cannot be realistic and extreme or persistent violence. (Tell that to The Hunger Games.)

All right, let’s check out the R rating classification, again from FilmRatings.org:

“An R-rated motion picture, in the view of the Rating Board, contains some adult material. An R-rated motion picture may include adult themes, adult activity, hard language, intense or persistent violence, sexually-oriented nudity, drug abuse or other elements, so that parents are counseled to take this rating very seriously. Children under 17 are not allowed to attend R-rated motion pictures unaccompanied by a parent or adult guardian. Parents are strongly urged to find out more about R-rated motion pictures in determining their suitability for their children. Generally, it is not appropriate for parents to bring their young children with them to R-rated motion pictures.”

As far as I can tell, that definition includes no restrictions. If your movie includes drug use, it’s cool. If you include a 10-minute murder scene, nice. If you want a sex scene that leads to a drug use scene and then finishes with a murder scene, more power to you!

Will Ridley Scott deliver a film as intense as Alien, even with a PG-13 rating? I don’t see why not. He’s an amazing director, and I have faith in his abilities. Am I disappointed that he may cut the rating down due to financial gains? Sure, but that’s his choice. I’ll see the movie regardless of its rating.

What about you?

The Hunger Games Breaks Hollywood Records

Audiences thirsted for teen death this past weekend and The Hunger Games satiated that thirst, pulling in approximately $155 million in US and Canadian box offices. Add on the global markets and the movies gain rounds out to around $214.3 million.

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Sound like a lot of money?

That’s because it is The Hunger Games now holds the record for third biggest opening weekend for a movie, behind Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 and The Dark Knight. Even more incredible, though, is that the movie had a solid Saturday night showing, totaling $51 million in sales, which ranks second all-time behind Spider-Man 3 ($51.3 million).

As you can see, though, the two movies beating The Hunger Games for all-time best opening weekend are sequels. That means The Hunger Games now holds the record for highest grossing opening weekend for a non-sequel film, beating out the previous champion, Alice in Wonderland ($116.1 million).

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In addition, $10.6 million of the total sales came from people viewing the movie on an IMAX screen. As stated on Box Office Mojo, that’s a very impressive figure for a 2D movie that doesn’t include any footage shot in IMAX.

Plus, the film can still make money off toys, DVDs, Blue-ray discs, clothing, and royalty rights for Halloween costumes. For Lions Gate Entertainment Corporation, this cash cow is set to be milked for many years to come, especially since this is only the first film of the trilogy.

Upcoming Horror Movie: Chernobyl Diaries

Chernobyl Diaries, a soon-to-be-released horror film penned by Oren Peli, the writer behind Paranormal Activity, depicts American tourist exploring the abandoned area of Chernobyl. If you skipped history class, Chernobyl is home to one of the world’s worst nuclear disasters a reactor exploded and forced some 350,000 people to evacuate the surrounding areas.

Since the evacuation, the abandoned areas have been ransacked, vandalized, and then, in 2002, turned into an extreme tourist location for visitors. According to Alcon Entertainment co-Chief Executive Andrew Kosove, the extreme tourism trips taken to Chernobyl are what inspired the making of Chernobyl Diaries.

The film follows a gang of American tourists who take a day trip out to Prypiat, the closest abandoned city to the Chernobyl reactor. They take photos, laugh about being wild and crazy, and generally show off their American attitude toward historic monuments. But when the sun sets and it comes time to leave, their tour guides car doesn’t start and they’re stuck in the city, which happens to be filled with ravenous mutants.

Check out the trailer:

Chernobyl Diaries is scheduled to hit theaters on May 25, 2012.

New Prometheus Trailer Is Intense

Ridley Scotts Prometheus, the anticipated spinoff/prequel/whatever to the classic film Alien, saw a new trailer hit mainstream media over the weekend. The trailer premiered at WonderCon, an annual convention celebrating science fiction, comic books, and motion pictures, in Anaheim, California.

The film takes place in the same universe as Scotts Alien franchise, though it is unclear whether Prometheus takes place before or after the series. As you can see in the trailer, Noomi Rapace wears the mantle of lead ass-kicking brunette, while Charlize Theron, Idris Elba, and Michael Fassbender act as her supporting team of space explorers.

As stated on MSN, Scott has been tight-lipped about the movie, but says a sequel should be in order should this one successfully scare the goo out of audiences.

Prometheus hits theaters on June 8, 2012, and we’re doing our best to create kickass corresponding Halloween costumes.

Prometheus

Film and Television Adaptation of Stephen Kings The Dark Tower

Back in 2011, Universal Pictures denied the possibility of turning Stephen Kings The Dark Tower series into a trilogy of feature films and two limited run TV series. According to Deadline, the film is now said to have landed in the hands of Warner Bros and is set to continue production.

The Gunslinger

The change of hands was due to the films budget, which exceeded Universal Pictures comfort zone. Akiva Goldsman, the screenplay writer for the project, edited the script and cut $45 million out of the expected budget.

Brian Grazer, a producer behind the project, told MTV during an interview, When people say no to you enough, then you have to lose money, which we’ve done without harming the scope of the film. He then discussed the television series, We’ll do the TV with HBO, and we’ll do the movie with to be determined. We’ll do it right.

Ron Howard is scheduled to fill the role of director. If the project were completed all three films and the two television series it would be the most ambitious undertaking since Peter Jackson consecutively filmed The Lord of the Rings movies. Good luck, Howard.

Javier Bardem.

Roland Deschain, the infamous Gunslinger star of The Dark Tower novels, will be played by Javier Bardem. Anyone who has seen No Country for Old Men will know why this actor is perfect for filling the shoes of Roland Deschain. However, as stated on Deadline, Bardems participation would depend upon his availability, but he was firmly attached when the project was at Universal.

Filming is expected to begin during the first quarter of 2013. Expect The Dark Tower Halloween costumes soon after.

That’s Not Snow…

According to ABC News, the recent floods in Wagga Wagga, Australia, have caused approximately 8,000 individuals to evacuate their homes. James McTavish, the Murrumbidgee SES controller, told ABC News, In Wagga itself, we’re expecting at 10.6 metres to have very extensive flooding through North Wagga and surrounding areas.

And it is within those surrounding areas that a spider belonging to the Linyphiidae family is struggling to survive. Countless numbers of the spiders have taken to bushes, trees, tall grass anything that gets them up and away from the floodwater.

The spiders are called Sheet Weavers due to the shape of their web. Normally, the webs are rather thin, not as dense and observable as the ones surrounding Wagga Wagga. The condensing of the spider population has created a gigantic sprawl of a web.

Sheet Weavers travel by climbing to the highest point, casting a strand of silk into the air, and waiting for a strong gust to pull them to a new, unknown destination. The problem in Wagga Wagga, though, is that so many spiders are trying this at the same time, creating a spider congestion.

Graham Milledge, entomology collections manager at the Australian Museum, said, The behaviour is called ballooning that is how [the spiders] disperse. They often land in the same place and that is why you get this large mass of them.

Graham Milledge claims the spiders are harmless to humans.