Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Crystal Lake Memories: Lloyd Albin, the untold story

Just watched a section of the outstanding Crystal Lake Memories: The Complete History of Friday the 13th. Congrats to Dan Farrands for making a great documentary and easily the most thorough one on the franchise.

In the section on Part 2, Lloyd Albin, who owned the summer camp in Kent, CT where the film was shot in September 1980, mentions he's had "a number of people" try to buy his props. I was one of them, having contacted Lloyd in early 2011 to visit and try to purchase his Pamela Voorhees head and the Camp Crystal Lake sign from the film. He was a really nice guy and told me a lot of the really cool stories and anecdotes he mentions in the DVD... and some that were left out. Such as:

  • The crew was battling the changing seasons in Connecticut, and had to keep spray painting leaves green.
  •  Neighbors complained about light pollution during the filming of the "skinny dip" sequence.
  • He played tennis against Lauren Marie Taylor during downtime. (Lauren Marie Taylor later told me she was embarrasingly bad at it).
  • Lloyd was paid $1,000 a day by the production company for the use of the camp and they took out a $20,000 bond against the possibility of damage. There was none so no penalties were charged.
  • Lloyd said filming began in early September 1980 and lasted about one month. The weather was generally still warm but they had to get people extra blankets who were staying in the cabins when a cold snap came in.
  • The “Jason shack” was built by the film crew in a flat area in the woods just west of the docks. There was also a camera track built in the same area to record Steve Dash running through the woods. When the crew was ready to leave they asked if they could leave the shack there, but Lloyd demanded they tear it down in case fans came by to check it out. Today there is no trace of it, but the growth in the area that was cleared is noticeably shorter.
  •  Lloyd said Lauren Taylor and most of the other cast and crew were very pleasant people.
  • Lloyd recognized Marta Kober on set and asked her if she was in a certain play he saw in New York, she confirmed it was her.
  • Lloyd was presant for the double impaling scene and found it very amusing. Apparently they called it “instant birth control” on set.
  • During filming, Steve Miner, whom Lloyd had gotten friendly with, presented three Jason facial designs, inquiring as to which one he thought was scariest. Lloyd said none of them were really fearsome, but that he preferred Hitchcockian horror where a person is coming up the stairs slowly and building tension and you never see the killer… he says that Miner then chose not to show Jason for most of the film.
  • Lloyd also pointed out to me from his living room the approximate location of the "Jason cabin", which I have located from memory on this map.

I told Dan Farrands about Lloyd and was really excited to see he made it out to Connecticut to film Lloyd, who despite his advanced age is still fit, healthy and loves to talk about Friday the 13th.

He also gave viewers a glimpse of his baby... the actual head of Mrs. Voorhees used in the film. I feel very lucky to have held it in real life and examined it closely. It is made of foam latex casted directly onto a wig display and painted reddish brown, blackened in some areas to give it a dried out, mummified look. It is still in very good shape aside from pieces missing from the nose and right temple.

       Congrats to Daniel Farrands for making an amazing documentary. Many thanks to Lloyd Albin for allowing me into his home to hold this piece of film history. And Lloyd: if you ever want to sell it LET ME KNOW!! THANKS!!!!

Monday, September 23, 2013


A collage of my better photos I was going to use as the blog's banner... until I realized it compresses everything beyond recognition.

I've had a few requests recently so I want to make it clear: I no longer paint masks or pull busts. The few I've done in the last year were for my own modest collection.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

The Dream Mask

My repaint of a P82 and a DMC hood.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Final part 3

A P82 on a Hideous Looking Man by Crash. Both hockey mask and bust painted by me. Shirt is a vintage olive drab Big Mac like the one worn in the film. This hock took me months to properly dremel and paint and is probably the last part 3 mask I will ever do.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Part 7 movie mold hock on a SSN New Blood

My grail 7 pieces. Blank mask from Beyond Disgusting studios, cast off the hero movie mask; undermask is a Silver Shampaign Novelties New Blood.

My final part 8

Made from a blank cast from the screen used hero mask from Friday the 13th Part 8. Trimming, drilling and paint by me. Straps by Auzorann. Blank by Beyond Disgusting Studios.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

My Roy...

is on ebay. No straps, only $59 starting bid.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Obscure Italian Horror Magic

So lately I've been on a trip into the dark realm of Lucio Fulci and Dario Argento. In the past few weeks I've seen Fulci's The Beyond, House By the Cemetery, Don't Torture a Duckling, Zombie 3, The New York Ripper and City of the Living Dead. I first saw his legendary Zombi 2 when I was about 13 and it was one of the last films I saw that really scared the shit out of me.

Zombi 2 I really believe is Fulci's masterpiece for 3 reasons: 1. Zombie vs. Shark; 2. The eye impaling; 3. The vaguely racial undertones. The zombies are predominately poor black villagers from a dusty, isolated island in the caribbean and the remnants of their conquistador conquerors. The villagers are all ill and dying from the outset of the film, a situation occurring in many countries in real life, before rising to feed on the few whites remaining.

Fulci was always his own man in the horror genre, and lived to break rules. His adventurism reminds me of a cross between crazed schizophrenic and dorm room stoner. On the one hand his plots are juvenile, disjointed and nonsensical; on the other his what-if-we-tried-this creativity is boundless. Fulci's walking dead in Zombi 2 aren't reanimated by some virus or plague, but apparently by voodoo magic, making it one of the only zombie movies that stays true to the zombie mythology of the West Indies, the culture from which the word originates. In City of the Living Dead, Fulci again breaks the rules by creating super-strong-teleporting-ghost-zombies with a signature skull-crush move. Who else would dare blend genres like that? Fulci doesn't give a shit what you think, he does what he wants.

The first time I watched The Beyond after seeing it on a list of great horror films I thought what the fuck did I just watch? The plot was more silly "legend" trope that you see in older horror films, the acting was awful and the zombies thrown in seemed arbitrary. More genre blending from Fulci, seemingly to no purpose, but at the time I didn't understand the master.

Upon further viewings though, I've since gotten addicted to it, partly due to his incredible creativity, and partly due to the infectious soundtrack. 

It is important to look at Fulci's entire body of work to really understand what made his genre blending so effective. Like Wes Craven and other great film makers, Fulci dealt with familiar themes from real life we don't like to talk or think about--autopsies, hospitals, funerals, cemeteries, our own physiological reality. If you could wrap it up in a word: Mortality.

Fulci's work is the work of a man trying to deal with his own mortal existence; to exorcise the fear of death from his subconscious by expressing it in all of its gruesome and somber reality on film. His films, taken as a whole, feel like one long, terrifying dream, a surrealist exposition of injury, death, decay, and finality. His few glimpses into the afterlife are governed by dreary despair.

The villains in Fulci's film aren't the Mansons or Gein's of the world, but rather the curse of death itself: they prey on the living without malice, but only seek to swallow up other lives and cover the earth in darkness.

The best horror films have something to say, even without intent by the film maker. In writing, directing and creating such a body of work, the film maker himself, much like a novel writer, may be unconscious of his own impulses while seeking to satisfy them. I think this is most evident in the work of Lucio Fulci.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

New Roy

First Roy in 2 years and the only one I've ever been satisfied with. Still need to find straps. This is my second favorite of the masks in the series, just love the blue chevs