The folks at the Splathouse podcast discuss The Suckling (1990), and it’s the headliner for today’s Horror Highlights. Also: album artwork and a track preview for Chris Alexander's They Drink Your Blood, Manos Returns world premiere details, the winners of the Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Festival 2018 awards, Speak of the Devil virtual experience information, and details on the LA screening premiere of Smiley’s

New Splathouse Episode Details: From Splathouse: "Sarah and Mike fu**ed up and made a mistake in the recording of this episode of The SPLATHOUSE...recording devices ran for about 40 mins during the pre-show meeting and ate up batteries and disc space...but rather than abort the project, Mike and Sarah made the most of it.

Welcome to a "fly on the brothel wall" episode of The SPLATHOUSE!

All the card-carrying SPLAT gang members return:

- John shows up with a ranty rant
- Sarah Jane and Eric kick off recommendations
- Elva has an opinion
- Elbee is on the beat with NPRLB for SPLATHOUSE

Plus some other friends show up!
- @darathus and @threeoranges from Twitter
- Some dude named Ed (not Edwin) from New York? Jersey? IDK LMK

It's a fun episode with a glimpse into what a conversation between Mike and Sarah sounds like and why, whenever they meet, it takes hours for their points to get across to each other (hint: attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, caffeine, belly laughs)...also, we're normally an R-rated pod for language, this week especially so.

The movie is THE SUCKLING (1990) and it's described like this, "A woman goes to a back alley abortion clinic, only to have her aborted fetus attack her, her boyfriend, and everyone else at the clinic." It's on Amazon Prime, watch it for free with your membership...we all did...(just paying it forward, chumps!)

We are back in two weeks with SPLATHOUSE: Hausu! Be sure to visit us online at www.splathouse.com"

To learn more about Splathouse, visit them on SoundCloud and iTunes.

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They Drink Your Blood Artwork and Track Sample: Coming out this year from musician, writer, and filmmaker Chris Alexander, the new album They Drink Your Blood is previewed in the sample from "The Fever" track that you can listen to below. The cover art and design are by artist Eric Adrian Lee, and to learn more, be sure to visit https://www.chrisalexanderonline.com/

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Manos Returns Premiere Details: Press Release: Press Release: "Seattle, WA: Manos Returns will make its world premiere at Crypticon Seattle, Friday, May 4 at 9 pm as part of the North West filmmakers showcase. A sequel to the cult classic Manos The Hands of Fate, Manos Returns focuses on a group of hapless travelers who get lost on a road trip and stumble into the sinister world of Valley Lodge. Manos - The Hands of Fate premiered in 1966, was immortalized by Mystery Science Theatre 3000, and is considered by many to be the worst movie of all time.

After the Manos Returns screening, there will be a Q&A with Jackey Neyman Jones, who was featured as Debbie in the original Manos, and the other producers: award-winning Seattle filmmaker Tonjia Atomic (Plain Devil, Hobo with a Trashcan), award-winning Oregon filmmaker Joe Sherlock (Drifter, Beyond the Wall of Fear), and Seattle artist Rachel Jackson (Manos - The Hands of Felt, José and The Hawk). Additional cast and crew may also be on hand.

Directed by Atomic, Manos Returns takes place 50 years after the action of Manos - The Hands of Fate. Four friends get lost on a road trip and stumble on a hidden cult lead by the sinister Master and his servant Torgo. As they try to escape, they are caught up in the power struggle between Debbie (given to Manos as a child 50 years ago), her mother Maggie, and the other souls twisted by their time serving the dark god.

The Manos Returns legacy cast features Neyman Jones (Debbie), Tom Neyman (The Master) and Diane Mahree Rystad (Maggie) reprising their roles from the original, plus Bryan Jennings, the son of Manos cast member William Bryan Jennings, taking over his father’s role as The Sheriff. They are joined by newcomers Danielle Daggerty (Clara), Christina Pezzo (Nicki), Nuria Aguilar (Pat), Christopher Barnes (Jay) and Steven Sheilds as Torgo.

“We are so thrilled to be premiering at Crypticon,” said Neyman Jones. “Several of us met there and over the years it’s become our ‘home’ con. It’s the perfect place to introduce Manos Returns to the world.”

Principle photography for Manos Returns took place in Falls City, Oregon in July 2016, after raising production funds via a successful Kickstarter campaign earlier that year."

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Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Festival 2018 Award Winners: Press Release: "(New York City, N.Y.) February 27, 2018 — The 2018 Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival has announced the award winners for its sixth annual event which featured exclusive premieres, panel discussions and virtual reality experiences. The festival took place from February 23-25 and featured special guest appearances by Armand Assante, Charles Baker, Jonny Beauchamp, Nicki Clyne, Nana Gouvea, Tom Sizemore and Melvin Van Peebles at the screenings of their film premieres.

"This year's festival was a successful entry into the science fiction film world because of its exceptional selections and special guest stars," said festival founder and director Daniel Abella. "We honored films that reinvented the genre and combined an emotional roller coaster of elements that left attendees refreshed and energized." The gathering also hosted a lineup of stars who made a lasting impression on the festival. "The air was sparkling with electricity," said Abella. "The interactivity between the celebrities and the audience was palpable and the charisma brought the festival to a new level."

The festival awarded films with honors based on originality, creative insight and inspirational storytelling through the prophetic lens of the festival's namesake. "With each passing year, more people are learning through our festival of the universal appeal of Philip K. Dick," said Abella. "Our 2018 winning films capture his legacy and serve as a beacon of hope and possibility for independent filmmakers who are not afraid of being different and rocking the boat."

Congratulations to the award winners of The 2018 Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival:

BEST PHILIP K. DICK FEATURE
Alterscape (2018) — World Premiere
Director: Serge Levin
Run Time/Country: 88 min, USA
Synopsis: After a failed suicide attempt, a young man coping with loss and depression submits to a series of trials that fine-tune human emotions but his unique reaction to the tests send him on a journey that transcends both physical and perceived reality. Starring Michael Ironside (Total Recall) , Charles Baker (Breaking Bad), Alex Veadov (Act of Valor), Serge Levin (Welcome to Willits), Debbie Rochon (Model Hunger), Mack Kuhr (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit), Olan Montgomery (The Blacklist) and Sara K. Edwards (Mad Women). Produced by Jon Keeyes (American Nightmare) and cinematography by Richard Clabaugh (Eyeborgs).

BEST SCIENCE FICTION FEATURE
The Child Remains (2017) — NYC Premiere
Director: Michael Melski
Run Time/Country: 120 min, Canada
Synopsis: An expectant couple's intimate weekend turns to terror as they discover their secluded country inn is a haunted maternity home where infants and mothers were murdered. Starring Suzanne Clément (Mommy), Allan Hawco (Frontier), Shelley Thompson (Labyrinth) and Géza Kovács (Scanners).

BEST HORROR FEATURE
Black Wake (2018) — World Premiere
Director: Jeremiah Kipp
Run Time/Country: 120 min, USA
Synopsis: Specialists gather in a top-secret facility to investigate a series of strange deaths on beaches along the Atlantic Ocean and examine video evidence to uncover a possible parasitic explanation for the fatalities. When a determined detective sends one of the scientists the crazed writings of a mysterious homeless man, she slowly learns that the actual threat may be more dangerous – and far older – than anyone ever imagined. Starring Nana Gouvea (The Fever), Golden Globe Award nominee Tom Sizemore (Witness Protection), Academy Award nominee Eric Roberts (Runaway Train), Screen Actors Guild Award winner Vincent Pastore (The Sopranos) , Jonny Beauchamp (Penny Dreadful) and Chuck Zito (Oz). Inspired by the cosmic horror of genre writer H.P. Lovecraft.

BEST DRAMATIC FEATURE
The Wanderers: The Quest of The Demon Hunter (2017) — USA Premiere
Director: Dragos Buliga
Run Time/Country: 90 min, Romania
Synopsis: A vampire hunter and a reporter investigate mysterious circumstances at a castle in Transylvania. Starring Primetime Emmy Award winner Armand Assante (Gotti).

BEST DOCUMENTARY
The Shaman and The Scientist (2017)
Director: Sarah Hutt
Run Time/Country: 15 min, USA
Synopsis: This short documentary explores the topic of traditional plant medicine from two perspectives – that of Don Juan Tangoa Paima, a curandero who works with Ayahuasca medicine in the Peruvian Amazon, and through the research of Dr. Dennis McKenna, who taught ethnopharmacology for over 30 years and is the brother of ethnobotanist Terence McKenna, looking for new medicines to treat schizophrenia and dementia. The story takes viewers from jungle to lab asking what is the value of undiscovered knowledge in the world's most biodiverse biomes, and what is at stake if we allow those precious resources to be lost.

BEST SINGULARITY, ESCHATON AND BEYOND FILM
It Began Without Warning (2017)
Director: Santiago C. Tapia, Jessica Curtright
Run Time/Country: 5 min, USA
Synopsis: "The time has come," the Walrus said. And all the little Oysters stood and waited in a row. Produced by Couper Samuelson, the executive producer of the Golden Globe Award-nominated film Get Out (2017) and Efren Ramirez (actor, Napoleon Dynamite).

BEST LATINO, AFRICAN AMERICAN AND PEOPLE OF COLOR SCIENCE FICTION FILM
Program (2017)
Director: Gabriel de Urioste
Run Time/Country: 8 min, USA
Synopsis: A young woman goes back to fix a broken relationship with a lost love.

BEST PHILIP K. DICK AUDIENCE AWARD
Paleonaut (2017)
Director: Eric McEver
Run Time/Country: 16 min, Japan/China
Synopsis: A scientist studying the first human time traveler falls in love with her subject. But if her research succeeds they will become separated by eons of history. She must find a way to connect with him across the ages or lose him forever.

BEST SCIENCE FICTION BACKERS AWARD
Metta Via (2017)
Director: Warren Flanagan
Run Time/Country: 10 min, Canada
Synopsis: Set in the future, a young woman wakes up in a mysterious temple-like room and must figure out her purpose.

BEST SCIENCE FICTION SHORT
Paleonaut (2017)
Director: Eric McEver
Run Time/Country: 16 min, Japan/China
Synopsis: A scientist studying the first human time traveler falls in love with her subject. But if her research succeeds they will become separated by eons of history. She must find a way to connect with him across the ages or lose him forever.

BEST HORROR SHORT
Sound From the Deep (2017)
Director: Antti Laakso, Joonas Allonen
Run Time/Country: 29 min, Finland
Synopsis: An international research group is searching natural resources from the Arctic Ocean. They pick up a strange underwater sound from far north and start to follow it to the uncharted waters. Inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft.

BEST ANIMATED FILM
Astronaut of Featherweight (2017)
Director: Dalibor Baric
Run Time/Country: 27 min, Croatia
Synopsis: From space spa colonies to alien plantations, everybody is forced to take care of their bodies in this dark vision of a hyper-capitalist trans-human society in which body is a commodity and money is immortality.

BEST WEB SERIES
Sounds of Freedom (2017)
Director: Holly Chadwick
Run Time/Country: 5 min, USA
Synopsis: Two veterans, one of the Iraq War and one of the Vietnam War, both suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder. From their jobs at the local newspaper and through a series of flashbacks and sessions with a common therapist, they are challenged to the max when a serial killer strikes at home.

BEST VIRTUAL REALITY
The Making of Marine Butterfly (2017)
Director: Alex Bartuli
Run Time/Country: 23 min, USA/Canada
Synopsis: Exploring the invention of the 3-Dimensional Audio System and where will it take mankind.

BEST TRAILER
Impuratus (2017)
Director: Michael Yurinko
Run Time/Country: 5 min, USA
Synopsis: A police detective in circa 1917 is called to a remote mental hospital to witness the death-bed confession of a mysterious Civil War Vet that forces him to believe in the supernatural. Starring Holt Boggs (The Leftovers), John Savage (The Deer Hunter) and Saturn Award nominee Dee Wallace (E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial)."

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Get Spooky With Speak of the Devil VR Experience: "Hollywood, CA-based VR production company Light Sail VR just released its debut original project, "Speak of the Devil," for Samsung Gear VR headsets. The interactive horror VR narrative recently launched for Google Daydream on Tuesday, February 13. Now, the experience is available on Oculus for Gear VR for $2.99.

The sinister choose-your-own-adventure experience takes viewers on a terrifying camping trip they will never forget--if they survive. With 12 fatal paths and only one ending that leads to survival, viewers are in control of the narrative as they explore the woods and come across different paths that lead them to their bloodcurdling fate."

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Short Film Smiley’s LA Screening: Press Release: Writer and Director Mike James, an independent filmmaker based out of Indianapolis, is returning to Los Angeles to premiere his new short horror-comedy “Smiley's,” a rural legend about a cursed vending machine and an obsessed college student named Mitch. Stressed out about an upcoming exam, Mitch and his study buddies take a break to cruise the countryside, leading to an unusual discovery: A mysterious soda machine stocked by a witch in the woods. After buying a "soda,” Mitch finds himself falling down a dark rabbit hole that he may never return from in this hair-raising, laugh-out-loud adventure.

“Smiley’s” will be featured at the 5th annual Pasadena International Film Festival for a single screening on Saturday, March 10 at 8:20 p.m. at Laemmle's Playhouse 7, 673 E Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, Calif., 91101.

TICKETS: To purchase tickets, visit: https://www.laemmle.com/films/43685

ABOUT WRITER & DIRECTOR MIKE JAMES: James is known for his work as a contributor to the infamous internet comedy collective 5secondfilms.com, writer and co-star in the group’s feature debut "Dude Bro Party Massacre 3,” and his solo directorial feature debut, "Open Mic Night After The Apocalypse.”

MORE INFORMATION:
For more information about "Smiley's," visit: https://www.facebook.com/smileysfilm/

For more information about Mike James visit: http://www.heymikejames.com/

  • Tamika Jones
    About the Author - Tamika Jones

    Tamika hails from North Beach, Maryland, a tiny town inches from the Chesapeake Bay.She knew she wanted to be an actor after reciting a soliloquy by Sojourner Truth in front of her entire fifth grade class. Since then, she's appeared in over 20 film and television projects. In addition to acting, Tamika is the Indie Spotlight manager for Daily Dead, where she brings readers news on independent horror projects every weekend.

    The first horror film Tamika watched was Child's Play. Being eight years old at the time, she remembers being so scared when Chucky came to life that she projectile vomited. It's tough for her to choose only one movie as her favorite horror film, so she picked two: Nosferatu and The Stepford Wives (1975).

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