[BATB 2] Stars Align for Second VA Beach Horror Convention [Event Report]
For the second time this year, blood reigned in Virginia Beach, as the “Blood at the Beach II” Horror Convention took over the plush Cavalier Hotel on the oceanfront, Nov. 9-11, 2012, and OBXentertainment.com was there to bring you all the gory glory.
The second incarnation of the convention featured more than 50 celebrity guests, including Jamie Kennedy (Scream, Malibu’s Most Wanted), Anthony Michael Hall (National Lampoon’s Vacation, The Breakfast Club), and Verne Troyer, known as “Mini-Me” from the Austin Powers movies.
Hall joined his Vacation sister Dana Barron, and Jason Lively, the second actor to play “Rusty Griswold” in the sequel European Vacation, as well as a first time ever reunion of six cast members from the 1987 comedy Weird Science (pictured below).
Relocated from a prior venue a few minutes from the beach to the Cavalier, located directly on the expansive Virginia Beach oceanfront, the new venue was a hit with everyone we talked to. Many of the guests took to Twitter over the weekend to praise the awesome view.
Sean Clark of ConventionAllStars.com even tweeted a photo with the caption, “Coolest view I’ve seen from a convention yet”.
Most of those we spoke with were in town for the first time and said they were impressed with both the convention and the area.
Making his first ever convention appearance, Kyle Labine (Freddy vs. Jason, Halloween: Resurrection) told us he especially enjoyed an after hours tour of the “old Cavalier” across the street, which is supposedly haunted.
Also visiting Virginia Beach for the first time, actress Elina Madison (pictured below) was at Blood at the Beach for a screening of her new film Huff, a modern retelling of the Three Little Pigs tale, along with her co-star Charlie O’Connell and director Paul Morrell. Madison told us she arrived after dark on Friday and was surprised to wake up to such an impressive sunrise view of the beach on Saturday morning.
“I get up and I open the curtains,” she said, “and I was just like, ‘Wow! My God, it’s so beautiful.’ It was amazing.”
You can read our full interview with Elina, coming soon to OBXentertainment.com!
The biggest draws of the weekend were easily Chandler Riggs and Irone Singleton, who play “Carl” and “T-Dog” respectively on AMC’s hit series The Walking Dead, which is currently the most watched show in the history of cable television.
Riggs and Singleton joined five other other cast zombies in attendance, including North Carolina actress Addy Miller, making her second trip to Virginia Beach after being a guest at the first Blood at the Beach convention in April.
The event, and specifically the standing-room-only panel (pictured above), was especially emotional for Singleton, [SPOILER] who’s character on The Walking Dead had just been killed off less than a week before the convention. Riggs also became visibly moved when discussing the emotional toll of filming scenes involving the death of his character’s mother, which took place in the same episode.
We’ll have a full report from the Walking Dead cast Q&A panel here at OBXentertainment.com in the coming weeks, in addition to our report from the Friday the 13th panel that featured Friday the 13th Part II stars Steve Dash, Amy Steel, and Adrianne King together for the first time on stage with horror icon Kane Hodder (pictured below), so be sure to check back!
We also attended an intimate Q&A with the stars of The Last Starfighter, Lance Guest (Halloween II), and Catherine Mary Stewart (pictured below), who talked to OBXentertainment.com about working in North Carolina on the 1989 classic Weekend at Bernie’s and vacationing in Duck, and we’ll have both the panel report and interview for you also in the coming weeks.
Zach Galligan (pictured below with OBXentertainment.com Editor in Chief Matt Artz), star of the 1980s favorites Gremlins and Wishcraft, told us that his upcoming slasher film Hatchet III was as brutal to make as he says it will be to watch.
“I’ve never been eaten by mosquitos so bad,” Galligan told OBXentertainment.com. “We weren’t in a studio, we were out there in the swamp. I had so many bites on my hands, everywhere. But that just made it better for us (actors) to feel it, because it was real.”
He said we should expect the third entry in director Adam Green’s Hatchet series to be the most intense yet. “I think a lot of people in this (convention) crowd are really, really going to like it. I got to do some scenes with Danielle Harris, and we had a little spark going on, but not the kind of spark you think.”
In addition to the celebrity guests, the event featured numerous vendors from around the country, many of which were selling handmade items created specifically for Blood at the Beach II. Among the vendors who wowed us with their killer designs were Big Chris Art, Alter-Ego-Dezines, Miss Megan’s ‘Lil’ Petshop of Horrors, Silent Orchid Studio, Sharkface Apparel, Crazed Creationz, Alternative Xchange, Nation Kilt, and more.
Many of the guests could be seen throughout the weekend sporting fresh fangs provided by Horror Show Jack.
A returning vendor from the first Blood at the Beach event in April, Cathy Bayer with Melissa Browning’s Alternative Xchange told us that this was her favorite convention she had worked so far, with stories of sharing wine with Anthony Michael Hall, whose both was across from hers.
The costumes and outrageous outfits worn by attendees were an unending highlight all three days, but the weekend truly culminated with a Zombie Prom on Saturday night, featuring DJ Joel Robinson.
Many of the celebrities mingled with the fans, most of which were dressed in appropriate undead fashion, as the Zombie Prom King and Queen (pictured below) were crowned just after midnight, crediting Wicked Woods Haunted Forest for their awesome makeup jobs.
Capt. Tim Story of Outer Banks Fishing Charters (pictured below) came up from Wanchese to attend the event with his wife, a runner used to participating in the annual OBX Marathon but had to sit out this year, which led to her accompanying her convention-veteran husband to Virginia Beach.
Tim said he has attended horror conventions all over the country and was thrilled when the innaugural Blood at the Beach became the first of its kind in this area in April.
“I love it,” he told us. “I came to see Kane Hodder. There’s not many people on the Outer Banks that love horror as much as I do, so it’s great that they’re finally doing something like this around here.”
The third Blood at the Beach Convention is set to return to the Cavalier Hotel on the oceanfront April 19-21, 2013, with Tom Savini (Dawn of the Dead, From Dusk Till Dawn), Traci Lords (Cry Baby, Not of this Earth), the Crypt Keeper himself John Kassir (HBO’s Tales from the Crypt) already revealed as the first guests confirmed.
After you watch our video slideshow in the player below, click here to view over 150 exclusive images from all three days in our Blood at the Beach II photo gallery, and then click here for over 50 additional images from the Zombie Walk that kicked off the event!