With my Blu-ray collecting cohort Brandon Peters having already covered all things Return Of The Living Dead 3 via the recent Vestron Video Collector’s Series release (check out his detailed review HERE!) it felt like all hope of obtaining my own cool copy was as illusive as fresh brains. But just like the creatures in the film you can’t keep a demonic dream down and desire of owning my own dose of Trioxin not only came to fruition, but it was signature city baby via the recent Return Of The Living Dead 3 Blu-ray Day! Yup, yours truly headed down to the genre happy Dark Delicacies for an amazing and star-studded event did not disappoint. On hand to sign both copies of the new Blu-ray as well as other collectable items from the Return Of The Living Dead 3 family included Director Brian Yuzna, Writer John Penney, Director of Photography Gerry Lively and iconic Make-Up Effects legend Steve Johnson. All signed stuff, chatted with fans and made the release of the new Collector’s Series all the sweeter. Below is a cool photo tour of the event from start to finish (ending with my own copy signed!), plus a short interview with the amazing Brian Yuzna to boot – read on return fans!
Finally I got a chance to have a quick chat with Director Brian Yuzna who talked about his unique third outing, the casting of standout star Melinda Clarke and the mechanics behind the metal monster that was Basil Wallace’s Riverman – enjoy!
DIRECTOR BRIAN YUZNA
After the first film came out and was so beloved, the second film was such a disappointment – what made you decide to jump that sequel and go on to create your highly memorable third outing?
Brian Yuzna: I’ve never been one of those guys who didn’t do sequels because I tried to make my living making movies…and I have kids! And so I’m not one of those guys who was ever really choosey and I thought wow someone will let me make a movie? That’s great! And I always loved The Return of the Living Dead. I visited the set when they were shooting it and it was a great movie. So I loved that movie and thought it would be great to do a sequel. I know that there was a problem with the second one, but I think it was because of a couple of reasons. One was that I don’t think the filmmakers were that into horror – they weren’t real true believers. I mean Dan O’Bannon did EC Comics with the first one. He mastered that and without the first one there is no Tales From The Crypt. And the second, in my opinion as I have no insider information, was that it was financed by Japanese as seen in the credits and they insisted on certain actors and characters being in it that were already deceased. So by the third one I think the value of the franchise had really dropped and then I became possible. I was very enthusiastic and I asked Trimark what the requirements were they said you have to have the Trioxin and you have to have brain eating. So then I wanted to be true to the Romero version and the O’Bannon version and have different mythologies. For some reason I wanted it to be more straight and make it a love story.
Melinda Clarke was such a huge find and she was stunning in the film and I followed her since the flick playing a tough brothel madam in Firefly and a sassy S&M gal in C.S.I.….
BY: You probably never saw The Killer Tongue!
No – I’ve never heard of that one!
BY: You should check it out!
Definitely – how did you come to cast Melinda?
BY: She just came in with casting – the typical way. But she was just so killer and so good. I think she had just finished doing a play called Vicious playing Nancy Spugen of Sid and Nancy and that was the take on how to do this character – to be a junkie.
The make-up work on Melinda is tasty, but the metal monster stuff with Basil Wallace was even more memorable can you talk a bit about creating that and how did Basil react to all that stuff?
BY: We made all that stuff. That was real metal he was in because Tim Ralston was a real metal maker. Normally if you have a regular effects guy you would cast it in resign and they would do foam and paint it to look like metal. This was just metal. And it cut into Basil, it was heavy and it was hard on him, but he was into it. He never shirked!
RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD 3 – COLLECTOR’S SERIES VIA VESTRON VIDEO IS NOW AVAILABLE ON BLU-RAY FROM LIONSGATE HOME ENTERTAINMENT.