MANOS Returns is the follow-up film to the cult favorite Manos: The Hands of Fate. Created by Jackey Neyman Jones, Debbie from the original film. MANOS Returns is directed by award-winning Seattle filmmaker Tonjia Atomic (Plain Devil, Hobo with a Trashcan) and produced by Jones, Atomic, Joe Sherlock and Rachel Jackson.
Friday from 9-11pm
Crypticon Seattle Again Proves Instrumental to Horror Movie Creation By Joe Sherlock
2018 will be my 10th year of making the pilgrimage north from Oregon’s Willamette Valley to attend Crypticon Seattle. More than just a fun weekend with my pals filled with seeing great new movies, meeting horror stars and hearing wild stories on panels, Crypticon Seattle has been instrumental to several of my own movies being made.
My indie slasher “Blood Creek Woodsman” happened because of Crypticon Seattle. Back in 2009, my buddies and I made our first trip to the con. We had a great time and met a bunch of great folks.
My friend Rob knew Adam Paris from his work in the gaming industry but meeting him in person at Crypticon, my buddy John Bowker and I knew he was perfect for a huge, hulking killer.
Sculptor William Bivens was a horror fan dying to be in more movies. And made very cool props!
I had already worked with Bryn Kristi on a couple of features, but here she was as a part of a spokesmodel group, looking great and always interested in doing more movie work.
We met others including Madeline Morgan, Annie Bardonski and Jaime Gurrad, all attractive actresses looking to do more horror! Actor Jake Hueni was there as he was starring in a short feature being screened, along with actor Daren Ackerman.
Inspired, John wrote a body count flick in the spirit of ’80s slashers calling it “Blood Creek Woodsman.” I shot and directed, making sure it was tailor-made for horror fanatics and full of blood, guts and hot chicks.
We cast everyone mentioned above, including Adam as the titular hooded killer. We shot in Northwest locations in Oregon and Washington with an all local NW cast (aside from that one guy who came in from Alabama for his part). It was only fitting that “Blood Creek Woodsman” had its world premiere at Crypticon Seattle a few of years later.
In 2012, one of my films was shown and as Seattle musician/filmmaker Tonjia Atomic tells it, “I saw “Twisted Fates” and had to meet you.” She came up after the Q&A and handed me a DVD of her latest project. We stayed in touch and she shot some scenes for a project of mine not long after.
A few years later while vending my horror flicks at the con in 2015, I was introduced to Jackey Neyman Jones, who was the subject of a documentary short being screened that year. Jackey had played the little girl Debbie in the cult classic “Manos: The Hands of Fate,” alongside her dad who played The Master. Upon finding out she only lived about 45 minutes away from me down in Oregon, I declared, “You need to be in one of my movies,” and thankfully, she agreed! I also met up again with Madeline Morgan from “Blood Creek Woodsman,” who I had not seen for years. That summer, I shot with Jackey for my horror anthology, “Beyond The Wall of Fear,” which also featured a segment with Madeline, a cameo by Tonjia, and even featured a necronomicon prop made by Joseph Voegele, whom I had also met that year at the con! “Beyond The Wall of Fear” appropriately had its world premiere the next year at Crypticon Seattle 2016.
You may be sensing a pattern here.
Tonjia knew Seattle puppeteer Rachel Jackson from an old job and Jackey met her during a Portland, Oregon stage version of Manos: The Hand of Fate, when Rachel was running a kickstarter for the film version of her puppet stage play, “Manos: The Hands of Felt.”
While a few Manos sequels had been tried over the years, even a few with Jackey’s involvement, none ever really finished. In late 2015, fate brought Jackey, Tonjia, Rachel and myself together, along with Jackey’s dad, Tom Neyman, to put together as official a sequel as you can get to a public domain movie, and “Manos Returns” was born.
We shot footage with Tom in November of 2015 and launched a successful kickstarter in the first part of 2016. That summer we shot in beautiful rural Oregon, taking advantage of wonderful locations including a haunted building that served as the new Valley Lodge. Jackey, Rachel, and Tonjia wrote the screenplay, I was director of photography and Tonjia directed. Not only did the story pick up 50 years after the events of the original film, but in addition to Jackey and Tom reprising their roles as Debbie and The Master, we flew in Diane Adelson to again play Debbie’s mother. Bryan Jennings, the son of the actor who played the sheriff in the original, plays the sheriff in our sequel. Other roles were filled with mostly local Northwest actors and several bit parts were played by kickstarter backers.
A long post-production period followed including the usual editing, color correction, etc. but also the creation of an original score that includes echoes and nods to the music of the original film.
Now, “Manos Returns” is complete, a seriously-told tale that honors the underlying horror of the original as 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 get 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.
As the crisscrossing path that lead me to my fellow “Manos Returns” producers ran through this convention, it is again only fitting and perhaps “fate” that the film’s world premiere will take place at Seattle Crypticon, Friday, May 4, 2018, at 9 p.m.
Join us! The Master would approve.
Evergreen 1 & 2