Seriously. Enough already. Can we go a least a month without losing another one of our horror family? Actor Joe Pilato has passed away at the age of 70.
Pilato may have appeared in quite a few films over the years, and he will still probably be best known for his psychotic Capt. Rhodes in George Romero’s Day of the Dead (1985). When you can create a character that not only shines above the incredible special effects in the movie, but makes a character one of those that you love to hate, knowing the payoff of his demise will be epic (which is was), you know you’ve done something right. And it wasn’t just his roles that made him so memorable, but the way he interacted with fans at the conventions. I can’t tell you how many shows I was at where he was a guest, and at some point during the weekend, you would hear him scream “I’M RUNNING THIS MONKEY FARM!”
At least fans will be able to remember him for generations to come while watching this classic film over and over. We salute you, Capt. Rhodes. And our thoughts go out to Joe Pilato’s friends and family during this sad time.
Over at the Midway’s website, they have the final lineup posted for this year’s Dusk-to-Dawn horrorfest and it is a beauty!
Originally announced at their show, one of the titles were going to be Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors, but that is no longer showing on their lineup. But they still have some other great classics in there. They had already posted that they would be screening James Cameron’s Aliens (1986) and Romero’s Day of the Dead (1985), but now have announced what the other two features are going to be.
Halloween II (1981), the one that I would consider the best of all the Halloween sequels, and one that I still think holds up rather well these days, will be the second feature in the lineup, right after Aliens.
My very first horror convention was in April of 1988, out in California. Up until then, I had never met anybody famous, especially any idols I had from the horror genre. But at the show, one of the first ones I met was George Romero. I had come walking out of the dealer room on my way to the auditorium for the Q&A’s, and there he stood, surrounded by fans like a scene from one of his zombie flicks. Except, instead of trying to eat him, they just wanted to get an autograph or just say hello and thanks. I didn’t take me long to join the growing mass of fans either. I had him sign my copy of Tom Savini’s Grande Illusions, which was my very first autograph as well. I still have that book to this day and is one of my most memorable.