Thanks to Filmmaker/Producer Ryan Scott Weber, Producer/Pop-Culturist Robert Bruce, and their fantastic staff, I was able to attend the New Jersey Horror Con and Film Festival this past weekend (March 31st – April 2nd) at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Edison, New Jersey. While there, I had an amazing time, and if you didn’t get the chance to go the NJ Horror Con in this, its debut year, I urge you to be on the lookout for tickets for next time, because between the slew of solid indie film screenings, Horror actors, artists and professionals, and the gore-loving fans that attended this event, this convention is one that shouldn’t be missed.
If you’re wondering what I’m talking about, here is a description of the convention taken from the event’s website:
“The New Jersey Horror Con and Film Festival is an annual gathering of professionals in the horror industry, actors, artists, filmmakers, dealers and, of course, horror fans. NJHC serves as both an industry insider’s networking event and a chance for fans of the genre to get together, meet some of the creative talents in the field, and generally spend a weekend celebrating all things scary.”
Upon entering the convention, fans were greeted by iconic film vehicles like The Mystery Machine, the DeLorean from Back to the future, and my personal favorite, Ecto-1.
While passing through the vendor rooms, I came across a familiar face and stopped for a while to speak with co-owner of the Obscura Antiques & Oddities store in NYC, and star of the Oddities TV series, Mike Zohn. We talked about the show, and life and business after being featured on a weekly Science Channel show which aired for five seasons. Business, even in the offseason, is booming.
One of the highlights from this Horror-filled weekend was getting the chance to spend a little extra time with Bryan Johnson, you know, the guy that Kevin Smith based his Clerks character, Randall, on. Bryan was kind enough to have a drink with me and shoot the shit prior to the screening of his film, Vulgar (2000). Following the late-night screening of the film, Bryan hung around for a Q&A session with Ming Chen (Comic Book Men), and Brian Quinn (Impractical Jokers). It was great talking with Bryan as well as hearing some of the behind-the-scenes stories about the film.
In addition to the great films being screened, Horror fans had the great opportunity to meet with actors like Matthew Lillard (Scooby-Doo), Traci Lords (Not of This Earth), Ted Raimi (Ash vs. Evil Dead), and Michael Berryman (The Hills Have Eyes). Fans were also given the unique event to spend the evening with Director John Waters (Serial Mom).
Throughout the weekend, co-creator of the NJ Horror Con and Film Festival, the Pop-Culturist himself, Robert Bruce, could be seen ensuring that the convention was running as smoothly as possible, and despite all of his hard work, he found time to connect with fans and enrich their experience. Again, the New Jersey Horror Con and Film Festival was an amazing experience, and my thanks go out to Robert Bruce, Ryan Scott Weber, and crew for all of their hard work. Any self-loving Horror fan owes it to him/herself to attend this convention next time it comes to town.