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Live From Miskatonic: Gary Sherman In Conversation
November 18, 2019 @ 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Note: This class is on a Monday night, to accommodate Gary’s schedule in the UK
In association with the Abertoir Horror Festival, Miskatonic is proud to present an evening in conversation with renowned genre director Gary Sherman, bringing him back to where it all began – Russell Square.
After cutting his teeth in advertising, Sherman’s ferocious debut Death Line (1972) announced the arrival of a major new directorial talent. Predating the higher profile The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) and The Hills Have Eyes (1977) with its blend of visceral cannibal horror and social satire, Death Line is a major contribution to the new wave of 1970’s horror that has perhaps only recently started to receive the acclaim it deserves.
He followed this with other such notable works as the darkly atmospheric Dead & Buried (1981), the gritty sleazefest Vice Squad (1982), old school 80’s actioner Wanted: Dead or Alive (1987), and the troubled production that was Poltergeist III (1988).
Sherman’s work is notable for its visual inventiveness and political subtext, often displaying a keen affinity for the plight of the marginalised and oppressed. While many of his films were met with relative critical indifference upon their initial release, several have been warmly reappraised in recent years.
Guillermo del Toro has consistently championed Death Line over the course of his career, calling it ‘one of the unsung masterpieces of the genre’, and the film’s recent restoration and blu-ray release earned it a whole new generation of admirers. Forthcoming restorations of Dead & Buried and Vice Squad seem set to do the same, and so Miskatonic is delighted to offer its audience this rare UK opportunity to hear the cult auteur discuss his work in depth.
We’ll talk to Sherman about working with genre greats Donald Pleasence and Christopher Lee, how it was an American expat nailed the thoroughly English class satire of Death Line, his struggles to maintain his voice and personality in the face of Hollywood interference, the trials and tribulations of Poltergeist III, his ‘lost’ film 39: A Film by Carroll McKane (2006) and why he considers it too disturbing to release, and much more besides.
Moderated by filmmaker and author Sean Hogan
About the Miskatonic Institute:
The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies is an international organization that offers university-level history, theory and production-based masterclasses for people of all ages, founded by film writer and programmer Kier-La Janisse in March 2010, with regular branches in London, New York and Los Angeles as well as presenting special events worldwide.