Sony premiered its Betamax Videocassette recorder for sale to the public this day in 1975. It was the second home use VCR to be released and was quickly followed by the format that most of us remember JVC's version of VHS. Whats that you dont know what a VCR is?? Ok stop, exit the room quietly and find a parent, ask them what "Be Kind, Rewind" means and I'm sure they will happily fill you in!
Today we have a twofer yep two killers for one day with the arrest of Charles Ng, and the suicide of his partner Leonard Lake, back in 1985. Lake was arrested outside a store where Ng had been caught trying to shoplift. Ng fled the scene, and Lake was taken into custody where he ingested a cyanide pill after revealing the truth of who he and Ng were. He died on the 6th, four days after telling the grisly details of his and Ng's crimes, that same day cops found and arrested Ng. Lake is believed to be responsible for as many as 25 (possibly more) murders with Ng connected to between 11-25. The two were particularly nasty and would kidnap torture rape and kill. The films they made were very incredibly strong evidence used in court and helped to secure the Death Penalty for Charles Ng, who is still awaiting sentence to be carried out.
Yale grad, and actor, Ron Livingston turns 47 today, born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa 1967. He is perhaps best known for his part in Cult comedy Office Space, but is building a nice fan base in horror lately as well, with his recent role in the film The Conjuring. You may not realize but Ron has actually been involved in a few from our beloved genre including Campfire Tales, Holly and one of my fav indie flicks from several years back now King of The Ants. Congrats on your big day Mr. Ron Livingston, we at The Horror Nation wish you a Happy Birthday!
It was back in 1982 when we first heard Carol Anne utter that creepy cool line "They're Here" in the premier of Poltergeist. Rumors run rampant even now about the "curse" said to follow those associated with the film, some believe the curse is responsible for the deaths of Heather O Rourke, and Dominique Dunne. The curse is supposed to stemmed from the use of actual skeletons in the pool scene of the film, it turns out at the time it was lees expensive to use real skeletons than fake ones who would have guessed? Anyway one thing is for sure and this it Poltergeist KILLED at the box office bringing in almost 122 million in box office sales, more than 10x the budget, and once again reestablished director Tobe Hooper's place in Horror history.
June 3rd 1983 Norman Bates came home, Psycho 2 hit theaters and audiences were happy to see ol Norman Bates again to the tune of almost 35 million in box office sales. The film stars Anthony Perkins, Vera Miles, Robert Loggia, Meg Tilly and Dennis Franz. Taking place 22 yrs after the first, we see Norman return to his family home ready to start anew, but it seems some people just cant let by gones be by gones. Poor Norman, can't a boy just love his dead mommie in peace?? Psycho went on to become a franchise, including a remake and is still such fan favorite, we now have a TV series based on Norman's story, The Bates Motel. Happy 31st anniversary, and long live Momma's favorite boy!!!
The King of Sadism and Sadists was born today 1740. He was born an aristocrat, but seems he was hell bent on letting daddy down, as his proclivity for writing extremely dark violent erotic stories and his uninhibited sexual nature did not set well with the social conscious of the time. He was considered criminally blasphemous, resulting in numerous incarceration and several stint in mental asylums. He was a prolific writer with many of his works written while detained, but they still find popularity even today, countless works have been adapted into movies including what some consider to be one of the most disturbing films of all time 120 Days of Sodom.
Awesomely oh so bad its good movie FrankenHooker premiers this day 1990 in the USA! Directed by Frank Henenlotter and starring former Penthouse Pet Patty Mullen, its loosely and I do mean VERY loosely based on Mary Shelley's Frankenstein novel. Budgeted at 2.5, the film didn't draw that crowd expected earning a measly $205k. This is a lovi or hate it film, and I love it! What can I say I'm a sucker for a sad love story! Wanna be doctor loses girlfriend in freak lawnmower accident and decides the best way to fix things is to reanimate said girlfriend but seems some of the parts are less than perfect so hmmmm what to do?? I know get parts from various prostitutes to put girlfriend back together again! Sounds perfect to me, too bad for the doctor that once she comes back she is more moved by money and murder than by his obvious love. Ohhhh I get teary just typing it, the heartbreak... If you ever find one of these available for purchase in the old VHS format be sure to snatch it up, in a great marketing ploy the box talks, uttering the line "Wanna Date" when touched the right way, ok so when you push the lamp post, same thing, making it a super cool collection piece for horror fiends.