in Shocktober

Shocktober: ZomBcon 2010

ZomBcon 2010! What a jewel of a convention… A shimmering, bloody, jewel. I’d never heard of it before this weekend and judging from the modest crowd I’m probably not the only one. I don’t even know if the convention has been held before, but what a blast my brother and I had at this orgy of blood splattered b-movie stars, novelists, artists and more.

We arrived at 10:00 outside Seattle Center. I nabbed a sweet parking spot, but as soon as we arrived we were just like… “Where is everybody?” There were no signs or anything, but eventually we found it was all being held in a convention hall next to SIFF theater. From there on we followed the zombies.

Naturally, there all sorts of ridiculous costumes upon entering. My favorites were the ones that didn’t make any sense like Indiana Jones and The Joker. Of course there was no shortage of great zombie costumes. My favorites were Zombie Marty McFly and Zombie Big Lebowski. Though I could have gawked at zombies all, my top priority was to get Bruce Campbell’s autograph. Opening the event, Bruce was esily the biggest draw. We probably waited in line for a good 90 minutes.
While I was waiting in line Paul snuck out to get a photograph/autograph with Terry Alexander (John from Day of the Dead.)

It took many full moons, but finally we met the man they call Bruce in a moment I’ll never forget. The amazing part is he actually talked to us! I mean like a real conversation, not just some sign and get out of here kind of thing. Bruce actually asked us about our interests and what not. We told him we were filmmakers, which immediately launched to words of wisdom, “You Know the movie A Simple Plan” to which I replied “Yeah I own that,” and then he told us to watch it with the sound off along watch Evil Dead II. He said both were great examples of visual storytelling. Not a bad tip.

Bruce signed my copy of If Chins Could Kill and Paul commented “You’re the only person I know who can make a SciFi Channel movie entertaining.” To which he chuckled and we were on our way. It was a great experience. Bruce may play up a macho persona on stage and screen, but in person he’s a sweet guy who cares about his fans and in no way acts like some priveleged celebrity.

(Bruce imparts us with words of wisdom below)

Afterwards I had a good chat with John Amplas, known best for playing the title role in the cult vampire film in Martin (Directed by George A. Romero). He was surprised to see younger people who had seen the movie and I talked about my appreciation for the film. I never knew he played the zombie dad in Creepshow. Nice guy.

A few minutes later Paul got an autograph from the soft spoen Scott Reiniger from Dawn of the Dead. Paul and Scott talked about DotD and he was impressed by our Bruce Campbell autograph, I didn’t know he was gonna be there, so it was a surprise. Jesus, Paul is tall.

Then we went to Dick’s Drive-In… Not much to say about that, except that it’s alway awesome. If you’re not familiar it’s a Seattle institution. Check it out.

Coming back we caught part of Bruce Campbell doing a Q&A, he always has the best wise ass answers. While everyone flocked around the stage, I noticed there was no line for who else but Malcolm McDowell. I got his autograph/photograph and told him I liked the episode of South Park he was on. Seems like it took him a minute to remember that was a thing. I’m still not sure if he ever remembered. But he was a blast. He has a very dry English humor that’s amusing. He had pictures basically from every movie/TV show he’d ever done. Yes, even Bolt.

We rounded out the day with an autograph and photo opportunity from who else but “The Grandfather of the Zombie” George A. Romero. Surprisingly, it only took us five minutes to meet him. We told him that we were “filmmakers” ourselves and found him to be a great inspiration. He was flattered and asked us about our film… So I got to talk to George A. Romero about McTrigger. It was great. For a man of such pop culture stature, Romero is surprisngly easy to talk to. It’s kind of like talking to an elderly art teacher (ponytail included) who’s always down to hang. What a memory.

ZomBcon is Seattle’s best kept little secret. Good guests with moderate crowds and great content. All the B-movie celebs were modest and the whole experience was very warm. I’m without a doubt going back next year, if there is a next year. Please don’t let this convention die and then forever walk the earth as a shambling corpse. Though that would be pretty cool.

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