Monday, October 17, 2011

All Hands on Deck.... for Cinematic Titanic!!

So things have been a bit quiet again at the house of Compound Geekery but there was a good reason for that. I, your humble hostess, was preparing for an epic quest. As my journey was to take me many miles I supplied myself with clothing

and rations;

and I loaded and prepared my trusty steed St. Andrew's Cross.

I handed care of Geek Dog to a kindly, older couple in the village until such time as I could return....

Uhhh, yeah... I would put a picture of Geek Dog in here except she's.... kinda still mad at me for leaving and not taking her with me....

And thus I set off into the wilds of the Midwest. I traversed the plains where miles passed without any signs of civilization; corn and wheat fields the only indication that people lived here and eked out an existence on the land. I crossed rivers wide and rivers narrow until at last, tired and worn I reached my destination... the city where five people of exceptional talent in humor and sarcasm were rumored to be plying their craft.... I came to see CINEMATIC TITANIC!

Okay, okay, I promise not to try to be funny anymore.

So some of you might be asking what the heck Cinematic Titanic is. I'll try to be brief...

In 1993 Joel Hodgson, creator of Mystery Science Theatre 3000 left the show. About a year and a half later at the end of the 6th season Frank Conniff left the show and in 1996 Trace Beaulieu bowed out. While the show would continue on these three spent the next several years kicking around Hollywood -- mostly behind the cameras as writers, producers and consultants for various movies, radio, and TV shows. The group all kept in touch,worked together fairly often and Hodgson and Beaulieu even renewed their friendship with Josh "J. Elvis" Weinstein thus bringing back together the three who had launched the show in the first place.

In 2007, with the Hollywood writers strike going on Joel Hodgson reached out to the gang with a chance to do it all again. Weinstein, Conniff, and Beaulieu signed on along with Mary Jo Pehl who had stayed with MST3K until the final end. Thus was Cinematic Titanic born.

Hodgson wanted to return to the roots of the original idea -- finding bad old movies that few people had heard of and exposing them to audiences with their own, unique, riffing style. This time around, though, there would be no TV station, no network and no executives; they were going to run everything themselves.

They arranged for filming space and started out with a handful of studio produced DVD's but Hodgson was already aiming at the next stage of development.... live shows. It wasn't as big of a step as it might seem -- back in the heady early days of MST3K the gang had done a couple of live shows where they riffed in character. Additionally, all five of them had begun their careers as stand-up comedians so they had experience with live performances.

Starting almost immediately, the troupe began performing live. Gradually, over the last couple of years they have phased out the studio DVD's in favor of producing DVD's of their live performances. They have a standing schedule in which they do a live performance once a month in a different city and each time they only stay a day or two at most.

So THIS... this was my chance... and I took it.....


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