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Thousands of horror fans attend annual Texas Frightmare Weekend

Eric Shirey

Thousands of horror fans invaded the Hyatt-Regency Hotel at the DFW Airport on May 2, 3, and 4 for 2014's annual Texas Frightmare Weekend. The three day event boasts one of the largest gatherings of genre celebrities in the Southern United States. It's a hotspot for enthusiasts looking to meet their favorite actors and buy the latest and hard-to-find collectibles the terror industry has to offer.

Texas Frightmare Weekend took place on one level of the Hyatt-Regency Hotel. You would think that an event boasting high-profile guests like Tobin Bell (the "Saw" movies), Linda Hamilton (the "Terminator" movies), and "Night of the Living Dead" creator George A. Romero would cause a riot or crowd catastrophe in such a small area. However, lines to greet the celebrities were well-organized. You may have stood in them for five hours to meet someone, but you at least knew where you needed to be and go.

I made my way through the two main meeting rooms where all the vendors and actors were stationed with relative ease on Sunday. Each personality I approached was more than happy to talk with me and pose for a picture. I spoke to Michael Biehn about his motivations for doing the Christian movie "Megiddo: The Omega Code 2." He said it was for the money, but he does lean towards the concept of Christianity if anything.

Linda Hamilton apologized to me for not having time for me to do an interview with her I didn't even ask for. She was very down to Earth and friendly to everyone she met. The cast members of both "Children of the Corn" and "The Blair Witch Project" were both more than happy to pose for "reunion" pictures.

Artists sat in front of their work which was displayed on curtained partitions behind them. Drawings and prints featured Jason Voorhees, Michael Myers, Freddy Krueger, and other classic horror icons staring out at people walking the aisles. One fellow was selling replica Lament Configuration puzzle boxes from the "Hellraiser" movies. There really was no limit to what you could find at Texas Frightmare Weekend.

The highlight of my weekend was meeting original KISS guitarist Ace Frehley. I got in line to meet him almost as soon as I walked in the building. He was stashed away in a private room where fans had a chance to sit next to the Rock 'N Roll Hall of Fame legend. He would make some small talk with every person as he signed your item. Ace shook hands with you and took a picture on your way out. Frehley was very personable and cordial to everyone.

Another great moment for me was meeting the man behind the mask in Scott Derrickson's "Sinister." Nick King plays the demonic Bughuul / Mr. Boogie in the movie. He was signing autographs and taking pictures with attendees for free. He talked to me about working with Derrickson and his excitement to start work on "Sinister 2." King posed for a picture with me while holding a replica of his mask from the movie.

Other exciting activities taking place throughout the weekend were movie screenings and private parties. A party based on "Night of the Demons" was DJed by Twiggy Ramirez of Marilyn Manson. It was hosted by the actor who played Angela in Kevin S. Tenney's cult classic. Many of the celebrities attended the get-together. The screenings included special introductions and question-and-answer panels before and after the films played.

Cosplayers wandered the halls of the Hyatt-Regency Hotel making people-watching another attraction of the event. Four guys in KISS costumes showed up and were promptly mobbed by attendees snapping pictures with their cell phone cameras. Jason Voorhees and Michael Myers were seen stalking separate corridors at one time or another. A giant shrouded green goblin made his way around the convention, no doubt having trouble fitting through the entries to the vendor rooms.

Texas Frightmare Weekend 2014 was one of the best and well-organized events I've ever been to. It was pretty crowded on Saturday, but still manageable. Anyone going on Friday or Sunday had no excuse for not meeting the celebrity they wanted to. If you're a fan of horror and slasher films and rock music, Texas Frightmare Weekend is a must-attend experience for every year.

You can see all my pictures from Texas Frightmare Weekend right here.

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