Vincent Price has long been a beloved actor in the horror genre, and starred in several very Lovecraftian films, including Roger Corman's The Haunted Palace(based on HPL's The Case of Charles Dexter Ward), Diary of a Madman (based on Guy De Maupassant's "The Horla"), and even portrayed the sorcerer John Carnby in Night Gallery's adaptation of Clark Ashton Smith's "The Return of The Sorcerer." This year, we welcome his daughter Victoria Price as our guest of honor. Victoria is an award-winning author and speaker in her own right; in additon to penning The Way of Being Lost: A Road Trip to My Truest Self and Vincent Price: A Daughter's Biography, she is also an acclaimed inspirational speaker and interfaith minister. She'll be joining us to speak about growing up with the legendary Vincent Price, as we feature some of his more Lovecraftian cinematic works.
With hundreds of movies to his credit, Roger Corman is one of the most prolific producers in the history of the film medium and one of the most successful. Corman has been dubbed, among other things, "The King of the Cult Film" and "The Pope of Pop Cinema" and his filmography is packed with hundreds of remarkably entertaining films in addition to dozens of genuine cult classics. Corman has displayed an unrivaled eye for talent over the years and his influence on modern American cinema is almost incalculable. Born April 5, 1926, in Detroit, Michigan. Corman studied engineering at Stanford University but while in school, he began to lose interest in the profession and developed a growing passion for film. After a term spent studying modern English literature at England's Oxford University and a year spent bopping around Europe, Corman returned to the US, intent on becoming a screenwriter/producer. He sold his first script in 1953, "The House in the Sea," which was eventually filmed and released as Highway Dragnet (1954).
Horrified by the disconnect between his vision for the project and the film that eventually emerged, Corman took his salary from the picture, scraped together a little capital and set himself up as a producer, turning out Monster from the Ocean Floor (1954). Corman leveraged his next picture, The Fast and the Furious (1954), into a multi-picture deal with a fledgling company called American Releasing Corp. (ARC). It would soon change its name to American-International Pictures (AIP) and with Corman as its major talent behind the camera, would become one of the most successful independent studios in cinema history. With no formal training, Corman first took to the director's chair with Five Guns West (1955) and over the next 15 years directed 53 films, mostly for AIP. He proved himself a master of quick, inexpensive productions, turning out several movies as director and/or producer in each of those years--nine movies in 1957, and nine again in 1958. His personal speed record was set with The Little Shop of Horrors (1960), which he shot in two days and a night.
During the 1960s Corman directed eight lavish gothic horror films based on the stories of including House of Usher (1960), The Pit and the Pendulum (1961), The Raven (1963), The Haunted Palace (1963), and The Masque of the Red Death (1964). All but one of the Poe films starred Vincent Price, and these films featured such other established actors as Boris Karloff, Ray Milland, and Peter Lorre.
In 1970 Corman left AIP and formed New World Pictures, an independent company that produced and distributed the work of such young artists as John Sayles, Martin Scorsese, Joe Dante, Jonathan Demme, and James Cameron.
An occasional actor, Corman typically appeared in the films of those whose careers he had helped. He had minor roles in Coppola’s The Godfather: Part II (1974) and in such Demme films as Philadelphia (1993), The Manchurian Candidate (2004), and Rachel Getting Married (2008). Other notable films included Apollo 13 (1995). Corman cowrote (with Jim Jerome) an autobiography, the aptly titled How I Made a Hundred Movies in Hollywood and Never Lost a Dime (1971). In 2009 he was given an honorary Academy Award for lifetime achievement. Two years later he was the subject of the documentary Corman’s World: Exploits of a Hollywood Rebel.
Richard Stanley made his feature film directing debut with 1990's acclaimed Hardware, starring Dylan McDermott and Fields of the Nephilim's frontman, Carl McCoy. His second feature, Dust Devil, was an unconventional story of an otherworldly serial killer in South Africa, and has a rabid cult following due to its striking visuals and beautiful landscape photography, plus its decidedly Weird taint. He also has created a number of independent, award-winning documentaries, an adaptation of Clarke Ashton-Smith's "Mother of Toads," and wrote and directed H. P. Lovecraft's Color Out of Space feature, produced by Spectrevision, starring Nicolas Cage, Joely Richardson, and Q'orianka Kilcher.
Robert Lloyd Parry is an actor and writer who specializes in literary storytelling: theatrical performances based upon texts from the golden age of the short story in English, approx 1880 - 1930. Since 2005 he has been touring the UK with the The M R James Project, a series of solo performances which bring to life the masterpieces of the father of the English Ghost Story. In 2015 he appeared as M R James in Mark Gatiss’s BBC documentary M R James: Ghost Writer. He has himself produced, written and presented two documentaries based on James’s work: “Wits in Felixstowe” and “Dim Presences.” Between 2013 – 16 he toured his adaptation of H G Wells’s The Time Machine around the UK, with the support of Arts Council England. He regularly performs short stories in pubs and libraries throughout the land, works by the likes of H G Wells, Arthur Conan Doyle, Saki, Arthur Machen, Kenneth Graham and E F Benson.