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The Horror! 

Dueling monster-movie conventions invade Cleveland this weekend.

There's bad blood between the creators of Cinema Wasteland and Fright Vision, the two horror conventions happening this weekend. It's a turf war for the hearts, souls, and pocketbooks of local monster fans -- Cinema Wasteland's Ken Kish even asked that his event not be mentioned in the same paragraph as the other. (Sorry!)

But it's the movie buffs who should be testy, since they're the ones faced with an overabundance of gore, sci-fi, and B-movie memorabilia and activities to cram into three days. Which one's for you? Cinema Wasteland (at the Strongsville Holiday Inn) is paying tribute to the drive-in-movie era with appearances by multiple Leatherfaces from The Texas Chain Saw Massacre series. Fright Vision (at Westlake's Holiday Inn) counters with visits from Lost in Space's Mark Goddard, The Creature From the Black Lagoon's Ricou Browning and Ben Chapman, and Amazon Women on the Moon's Sybil Danning. Both conventions will feature tons of vendors, shilling everything from old monster magazines and videos to comic books and vintage models.

"I'm a little breathless and looking forward to meeting [original Leatherface] Gunnar Hansen," says Bill Johnson, who portrayed the masked killer in 1986's The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2. Edwin Neal, whom you loved as the doomed "Hitchhiker" in the first movie, will also sign autographs -- when he's not hunting down vintage placards for his own collection. "Half the great movie posters in the world came from [Cleveland] and surrounding areas in the old days," he says. This weekend, he gets twice as many places to look for them.

Speaking of Highlights

More by Lucy McKernan


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