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Zombie‘s name was first mentioned in connection with the movie adaptation of MÖTLEY CRÜE‘s 2001 book in an interview with CRÜE drummer Tommy Lee, which was posted yesterday on the web site. The article quoted Lee as saying that the film “would be a cool place to release some new [MÖTLEY CRÜE] music” before went on to state that the movie is “on track with Rob Zombie as its director.”

Zombie will direct a new horror film called “The Lords Of Salem” later this year.

It was reported in 2008 that MÖTLEY CRÜE was trying to extricate itself from a deal with MTV Films, a division of Paramount Pictures, to make the “The Dirt” movie.

A deal was first announced for the film version in 2006 but has since gone nowhere. Bassist Nikki Sixx told Reuters that MTV was “a channel that used to be hip and has now actually become unhip…They are not the right partner.”
Legendary San Francisco Bay Area metal photographers Brian Lew (Whiplash fanzine) and Harald “O.” Oimoen (D.R.I.) have joined forces to create the large-format hardcover photo collection “Murder In The Front Row: Bay Area Bangers And The Birth Of Thrash Metal”. Coming this fall from Bazillion Points Books, this intense look at early hardcore headbangers features some of the first photos of the “Big Four” and their extended family of thrash metal bands. With hundreds of candid, live, and studio shots, Lew and Oimoen celebrate the unique wild-eyed spirit and atmosphere of the historic S.F. Bay Area heavy metal scene: pinpointing clubs (The Old Waldorf, The Stone, Ruthie’s Inn, The Omni); hangouts (The Record Vault, the infamous Metallica Mansion); and beloved local figures like fearless stage diver Toby Rage, manager Debbie Abono, and the unrivaled metal ringmaster Paul Baloff of EXODUS.

Among the jaw-dropping moments in heavy metal history on display: Cliff Burton‘s first rehearsal with Dave Mustaine-era METALLICA; Kerry King of SLAYER performing with early MEGADETH; METALLICA and SLAYER‘s first Bay Area shows; the first meeting of SLAYER and METALLICA; original uncropped prints of POSSESSED‘s blood-spattered “Seven Churches” band photo shoot; some of the earliest photos of VIO-LENCE and DEATH ANGEL; TESTAMENT (then called LEGACY) dressed in religious stage outfits; the crazed front row faces from legendary Ruthie’s Inn; and METALLICA‘s triumphant takeover of Day On The Green in 1985.

At roughly 300 pages, filled with unpublished images and rare flyers, this incredible visual time capsule stems from a friendship that started when Brian Lew and Harald O. first met as camera-wielding teenage metalheads. Both later contributed to Ron Quintana‘s infamous Metal Mania fanzine.

Says Harald O.: “I am so psyched on getting these photos out there. The camaraderie and great friendships forged between all the bands and the fans was so cool-there literally wasn’t much distinction. Everybody was pals with everyone else, and it was a magical time to be a metalhead living in the Bay Area. People are gonna freak on what what we’re gonna show them. This is a dream come true!”

Says Brian Lew: “This will not be a history book, but rather a time machine back to the ‘bonded by blood’ days of the original Bay Area metal scene. Before they played the Bay Area, SLAYER wore makeup onstage; after that first Bay Area show they never wore makeup again. This book will show people why.”

“Murder In The Front Row: Bay Area Bangers And The Birth Of Thrash Metal” will be released this fall via Bazillion Points Books, America’s smallest but heaviest book publisher.

For more information, visit

The world’s first-ever film festival dedicated to heavy metal music is set to take place at the Downtown Independent Cinema in Los Angeles, California from March 31 through April 3, 2011.

Festival organizer and long-time metalhead Samuel Douek is proud to announce the first portion of the maiden lineup for 2011’s Heavy Metal Film Festival. Many more films will be announced soon.

“I think the metal community in Los Angeles will be surprised in many ways and people around the world will be intrigued about what our festival is all about.

“This is shaping up to be an international event with films from Lithuania, the U.K., USA, and Finland.

“To open the very first Heavy Metal Film Festival, we have decided to give the honor to ‘Las Marimbas Del Infierno’ (‘Marimbas From Hell’) directed by Julio Hernández Cordón. A Guatemalan film with co-production from France and México, this tells an amazing story of survival, cultural tradition, heavy metal, and trying to live a decent life.

“This film premiered as an official selection at the Toronto Film Festival and then played at San Sebastian Film Festival in Spain. The film has already been selected at the Miami International Film Festival and will definitely travel the world.

“We are extremely happy to have the Los Angeles premiere of this unique and original story.

“The opening-night screening will be followed by a reception.”

Other films screening at the Heavy Metal Film Festival include:

** “Promised Land Of Heavy Metal” (Kimmo Kuusniemi and Tanja Katinka Karttunen), Finland, 2010:

A feature documentary film about the history and philosophy of heavy metal and how it became such a big deal in a small country called Finland.

From its early “underground” days to the present success stories, interviews with famous — and infamous — musicians, experts, events organizers, a psychiatrist, a priest, and a doctor of theology all tell the story of Finnish metal.

Can metal survive when it becomes mainstream and Eurovision and “Pop Idol” competitions are won by metal? Metal has even entered the Finnish Lutheran church which organizes metal masses. Includes interviews with Finnish metal’s heavy hitters NIGHTWISH, HIM, SONATA ARCTICA, NIGHTWISH, and LORDI plus ENTOMBED from Sweden, Norway’s DIMMU BORGIR, KILLSWITCH ENGAGE from the U.S., plus the Madam President of Finland herself, Tarja Halonen.

** “The Bunny Game” (Adam Rehmeier), USA, 2011:

A violent drama in black and white that will promise to be the talk of the festival, its dialogue and photography scream metal. With a soundtrack from local black metal band HARRASOR, the film follows the life of a drug-addicted prostitute and how she is picked up by a truck driver and held against her will for five days. “The Bunny Game” is as much twisted performance art as traditional feature film. Equal parts snuff film and extremely non-traditional therapy, it’s clear that normal cinematic rules don’t apply. The director states: “We wanted to make a film the same way in which we recorded music, and in that sense, ‘The Bunny Game’ is very much a musician’s film.” Includes a question-and-answer session with the director and cast.

** “Three Days” (Daina Pupkeviciute), Lithuania, 2011:

A creative documentary about a thrash metal band from Lithuania named DISSIMULATION from the Ledo Takas Records roster. The film follows the band for three days on a road trip covering what metal is all about. The band has not played together in months and they are on their way to a metal fest in Lithuania. This film manages to bring the intense and beautiful scenery of Lithuania and its landscapes to the metal life of Lithuania and its citizens. The members of DISSIMULATION are not, by any means, your normal characters; discussions about life and transformation are only the beginning of a philosophical debate that makes the band what it is.

** “Absent” (Justin Hunt), USA, 2011:

This explores the worldwide crisis of absent and disengaged fathers and the negative impact that the “father wound” makes on society. Weaving interviews with participants who speak from observation and personal experience, the film includes on-camera testimony from author John Eldredge, World Champion boxer Johnny Tapia, fitness model Robin Decker and James Hetfield, best known as co-founder of METALLICA. Includes a question-and-answer session with the director.

** “Heavy Metal Thunder – The Movie” (Craig Hooper), U.K., 2010:

SAXON are true heavy metal heroes. Their story is a classic rock ‘n’ roll saga: five friends from the backstreets of Yorkshire, England setting out to take on the world. The resulting chart glory, mixed with band in-fighting and full-on rock excess, ensures their dramatic tale will become part of heavy metal history. This feature-length documentary film tells the full warts-and-all story of 30 years of heartache, earache, success and excess. Produced by critically acclaimed documentary filmmakers Coolhead, it not only has contributions from SAXON members past and present, but also from the likes of Lars Ulrich (METALLICA), Lemmy and “Fast” Eddie Clarke (MOTÖRHEAD), and many, many others. It also features freshly-uncovered archived material. The whole production was funded by SAXON‘s army of loyal fans, who pre-ordered copies of the film before it was completed, providing Coolhead with the budget to make the film.

** “Anvil! The Story Of Anvil” (Sacha Gervasi), USA, 2008:

Probably the most awarded music film in the last few years, we are lucky enough that it is about a metal band, ANVIL! The festival organizers decided to screen this film for many reasons. First, because they can; second, because director Sacha and Lips will be joining them for a question-and-answer session after the film for a very special presentation.

** “Assorted Atrocities” (Craig Cefola and Rob Dukes), USA, 2011:

After EXODUS pioneered the Bay Area thrash scene back in 1980, the band has gone through hell and back a few times. Without achieving the commercial success as some of their peers, they have stayed true to both their music and fans, still creating some of the best music in the thrash metal genre. This film covers the last five years of the band’s history and brings you into their inner circle. Including stories about original vocalist Paul Baloff‘s craziest moments, tales from the road, and an inside look at the recording process of “Shovel Headed Kill Machine”, this special screening of “Assorted Atrocities” features bonus footage not available on the band’s 2010 DVD of the same name. Live footage includes EXODUS in South America, Japan, Australia, and Europe plus the band’s voice-over sessions for the cartoon “Metalocalypse”.

** “Hated: G.G. Allin & The Murder Junkies” (Todd Phillips), USA, 1994:

Documentary about the life and death of the notorious underground punk icon G.G. Allin, the foul-mouthed, heroin-shooting lead singer of the MURDER JUNKIES, who would throw excrement at the crowd, start fights with the biggest guys in the audience, and threatened to kill himself onstage. He was considered the lowest common denominator of our society by some, an avant-garde artist by others. He died of an overdose in the early ‘90s.

On Thursday, March 10, advanced tickets to the Heavy Metal Film Festival will be available for purchase via the Downtown Independent Cinema Box Office. Ticket prices will be as follows:

* $9.00 per film
* $15.00 – opening night screening (includes after-party)
* $33.00 – day pass (Friday, Saturday and Sunday)
* $66.60 – advanced purchase festival pass (ONLY 30 available at this special price; includes opening night)
* $99.00 – advanced purchase festival pass (ONLY 100 available; includes opening night)

For more information about volunteering for this event, please write in to

Visit the Heavy Metal Film Festival online at

Rob Zombie has shot down reports that he will direct the film version of the MÖTLEY CRÜE memoir, “The Dirt: Confessions Of The World’s Most Notorious Rock Band”. “No, I’m not doing the MÖTLEY CRÜE movie,” Zombie told in a video interview which is set to be published next week. “I don’t know where that [rumor] came from.”

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