“Popcorn & Candy: Creature Teacher”

Posted in 1 on July 5, 2009 by everyotherdayishalloween

DCist’s highly subjective and hardly comprehensive guide to the most interesting movies playing around town in the coming week.

2009_06_25_goredevol.jpgEvery Other Day is Halloween

SILVERDOCS is over, but the AFI just can’t quit the documentaries. While they’re returning to the retrospectives that were running before the festival interrupted, they’re featuring limited runs of three documentaries as their prime offerings over the next week. Included among those is the fantastic 1984 documentary, The Times of Harvey Milk, a film that formed the basis of much of last year’s excellent biopic Milk, and is even more moving than Van Sant’s narrative version. And on Saturday, the theater is hosting the world premiere of a documentary on a local legend: Dick Dyszel, (aka Bozo the Clown, aka Captain 20, aka Count Gore De Vol).

If you grew up in the D.C. area in the 70s or the 80s, chances are you’re familiar with at least one of those aliases. Dyszel got his start on local television on WDCA 20 as one of the many Bozos across the country, before moving on to long stints as children’s programming host Captain 20 and, perhaps most famously, asCreature Feature host Count Gore De Vol (a subject DCist has looked into before). It was in this last incarnation that he had the most impact, serving as the gatekeeper to classic horror movies for a generation of Washingtonians, and becoming one of the most well-known horror hosts in the country short of Elvira. Always one to push boundaries and stay close to the cutting edge, Dyszel resurrected the Count a decade after his television run had ended to become the first host of a streaming web program, an online show that continues to this day. Director C.W. Prather’s documentary charts Dyszel’s career, from clown to count, and features interviews with other famous horror hosts, and commentary from local fixtures like Arch Campbell and Jeff Krulik (director of the iconic Heavy Metal Parking Lot). Krulik will also be on hand at Saturday’s premiere to moderate a Q&A with Prather and Dyszel after the screening.

View the trailer.
Saturday at 8:20 p.m. at the AFI.



“It’s a fantastic and inspiring documentary!”

Posted in 1 on July 5, 2009 by everyotherdayishalloween

More from BadLit.com:

June 27
8:20 p.m.
AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center
Silver Spring, MD

Hosted by: Midsummer Night’s Scream II

Every Other Day Is Halloween is director C.W. Prather’s documentary about Count Gore De Vol, the beloved Washington, D.C. TV horror movie host. Portrayed by Dick Dyszel, De Vol was a major cult celebrity in the nation’s capital during the ’70s who fell victim to ’80s media consolidation. After being tossed off the air, De Vol turned to the Internet where he has led a renaissance of horror movie hosting. Also, the “Other” of the title refers to other characters Dyszel portrayed on TV, including Bozo the Clown and the sci-fi themed kids show host Captain 20.

You can read Bad Lit’s review of Every Other Day Is Halloween here. It’s a fantastic and inspiring documentary.

The screening will feature director Prather and Count Gore De Vol in person. The post-screening Q&A will be moderated by D.C.’s own documentary filmmaking legend Jeff Krulik.

C.W. Prather is also the founder and director of Washington D.C.’s Spooky Movie Film Festival.

For more info, please visit the AFI website.

Washington Post Express: “Down With the Count: Dick Dyszel”

Posted in 1 on July 5, 2009 by everyotherdayishalloween

Count Gore De Vol
AS “TRUE BLOOD” demonstrates, being an old vampire doesn’t mean you can’t be modern. Consider Count Gore De Vol, the first TV horror host to move his show online. On Saturday, the AFI celebrates Dick Dyszel‘s 1972-1987 tenure as the Count and kiddie emcee “Captain 20” with the premiere of the documentary “Every Other Day Is Halloween,” hosted by “Heavy Metal Parking Lot” co-director Jeff Krulik.

» EXPRESS: How did you get involved?
» DYSZEL: Curtis [Prather] would show up with cameras at events, and ask for clippings and footage. About a year ago, he said he would put it together as a film. Speaking as someone who grew up with hosted kids’ shows, if you grew up here and watched Channel 20, you owe it to yourself to see this film.

» EXPRESS: What horror hosts did you watch growing up in Chicago?
» DYSZEL: There was “Shock Theater” with “Marvin,” a beatnik with Coke-bottle glasses. After Universal released their classic films for TV, almost every station that bought the package put on some kind of hosted showcase around these movies.


» EXPRESS: Could you relate to Count Floyd on “Second City Television“?
» DYSZEL: I never saw it, but I had people continually telling me “Hey, Count Floyd ripped you off!” I replied that I ripped off Bela Lugosi, so what’s the big deal?

» EXPRESS: Being on the Web rather than TV, are you free to choose movies regardless of content?
» DYSZEL: We are limited to public domain, or new movies that people give us. And I think you’ll see more of that: With the advent of digital recording, everyone thinks they’re Cecil B. DeMille. Or J.J. Abrams, as the case may be.

» AFI Silver, 8633 Colesville Road, Silver Spring, Sat., June 27, 8:20 p.m.; 301-495-6700. (Silver Spring)

Written by Express contributor Paul Stelter
Photo by Dan Zak/The Washington Post

Washington Post Tip of the Week: “Ghoulish Film Fun”

Posted in 1 on July 5, 2009 by everyotherdayishalloween

From the 1960s through the 1980s, almost any good-size American city had one: a cheesy local television host who would dress up in ghoul drag–“The Creep,” “Dr. Paul Bearer,” “Lucretia Mortem”–to present horror movie broadcasts. Washington’s version was Count Gore De Vol.

The AFI and Discovery Channel’s SilverDocs documentary festival may be over, but on Saturday, June 27, at 8:20 p.m., AFI’s Silver Theater will host the world premiere of “Every Other Day Is Halloween,” a documentary by local filmmaker Curtis Prather about our own Dick Dyszel, who played the Count. (Locals with deep roots may also remember Dyszel’s stints as Bozo the Clown and WDCA-Channel 20’s Spock-eared “Captain 20.”) Prather and Dyszel, in character, will be on hand for a post-screening Q&A moderated by legendary local filmmaker Jeff “Heavy Metal Parking Lot” Krulik.

Tickets are $10; $9 for seniors, students and military personnel; $8.50 for AFI members; and $6 for age 12 and younger. For information, call 301-495-6700 or visitwww.afi.com/silver. The theater is at 8633 Colesville Rd., Silver Spring (Metro: Silver Spring).

–Michael O’Sullivan, Weekend section


Posted in 1 on July 5, 2009 by everyotherdayishalloween

It’s late, your flipping the channels on the ol’ boob-tube…same stuff, different night…so you keep flipping…that’s when you find it…your local horror host show. For some of us it was Svengoolie, for some Elvira, for others it was Zacherly or Zamboo, but if you grew up in the Washington,DC area, then we all know who it was that brought you the ghoulish goodies on the scare-waves, none other than Count Gore De Vol and Creature Feature….or maybe you knew him as one of his other alter egos M.T Graves, Captain 20, or Bozo the Clown…. shoot, you may even still have your Channel 20 Club Card (over half a million were distributed during the 1970’s and 1980’s). He’s the one, the only, Dick Dyszel. Creture Feature ran on DC’s WDCA from 1973 to 1987. Mr. Dyszel also revolutionied the concept of “on demand entertainment” when he introduced the first-ever streaming horror host show in 1998, Creature Feature: The Weekly Web Program, predating Youtube, Hulu, and iPod.

From the director and founder of The Spooky Movie Film Festival, CW Prather, comes a comedic documentary on the career of Dick Dyszel, “Every Other Day is Halloween”, with rare footage andinterviews with Dick as well as with filmmaker Jeff Krulik (Heavy Metal Parking Lot), “scream queens” Eleanor Herman and Leanna Chamish, writer Steve Niles(30 Days of Night), critic Arch Campbell, and horror hosts John Dimes (Dr. Sarcofiguy of Spooky Movie) and Jerry Moore II (Karlos Borloff of Monster Madhouse).The doc premiered June 27, 2009 at the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Silver Spring, MD. CW Prather, as well as being the founder of the Spooky Movie Film Festival, which is based in Fairfax, VA, is also a Telly Award winning director and producer, who directed the documentaries, Public Witness, Sharlene’s House and the 1995 feature The Wave. For more info on the documentary you can contact Mr. Prather himself on the Spooky Movie site,http://www.thespookymovie.com. You can also check out Creature Feature: The Weekly Web Program first hand at http://countgore.com/gore/ and see Count Gore De Vol in action! Tell him Madame Mortem sent ya!

The Washington Post: “Creepy, Kooky, Mysterious in Summertime”

Posted in 1 on July 5, 2009 by everyotherdayishalloween

By Lavanya Ramanathan
Saturday, June 27, 2009

Halloween . . . in June? Well, for Washington TV personality Count Gore De Vol (real name: Dick Dyszel), it used to come in October, November, December and June — once a week actually, when he provided the comic relief for the “Creature Feature” on local television back in the ’70s and ’80s.

Tonight at the AFI Silver Theatre, the count and all of Dyszel’s other quirky personas are examined in the premiere of “Every Other Day Is Halloween.”Other horror hosts (including Countess von Stauffenberger and Dr. Sarcofiguy), Arch Campbell and “Heavy Metal Parking Lot” filmmaker Jeff Krulik turn up in this documentary to talk about Dyszel and his vision. The movie’s director, C.W. Prather is joined by the count and Krulik for a talk after the screening, which also kicks off the Spooky Movie Festival’s annual Midsummer Night’s Scream series.

$6-$10. Today at 8:20 p.m. AFI Silver Theatre, 8633 Colesville Rd., Silver Spring. 301-495-6720 or http://www.afi.com/silver.

The Washington Post – Style On The Go

Official Press Release on World Premiere Screening:

Posted in Every Other Day is Halloween on May 19, 2009 by everyotherdayishalloween

Has World Premiere at AFI Silver Theatre

Saturday, June 27, 2009 at 8:20 p.m.


Silver Spring, Maryland, May 19, 2009—The Spooky Movie Film Festival is proud to announce the world premiere screening of C.W. Prather’s new documentary, EVERY OTHER DAY IS HALLOWEEN, Saturday, June 27, at 8:20 p.m. at the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Silver Spring, MD. 

This comedic documentary chronicles the career and legacy of Dick Dyszel, whose television alter-egos, “Count Gore De Vol,” “Captain 20” and “Bozo the Clown” helped raise generations of Washingtonians in the 1970s and 1980s (almost a half-million “Channel 20 Club Cards” were distributed during this time). But it was in the 1990s that Dick helped revolutionized the concept of entertainment-on-demand when he launched the first-ever streaming horror host show, “Creature Feature: The Weekly Web Program,”—predating Hulu, YouTube, and the iPod by years—which opened him up to the world.

“A nostalgic ode that makes you wish you had
your own Gore De Vol on your own TV!” 
–  BadLit.com

Featuring rare one-of-a-kind footage, and interviews with Dick Dyszel, critic Arch Campbell, writer Steve Niles (30 DAYS OF NIGHT), filmmaker Jeff Krulik (HEAVY METAL PARKING LOT), “scream-queens” Eleanor Herman and Leanna Chamish, as well as a new generation of television “horror hosts” including John Dimes (“Dr. Sarcofiguy”) and Jerry Moore II (“Karlos Borloff”), this doc’s universal appeal goes beyond the beltway to show how art can sometimes come back to re-influence itself, and how the best days will always be ahead.

Mr. Prather is a Telly Award winning director and producer, who previously directed the documentaries, PUBLIC WITNESS, SHARLENE’S HOUSE and the 1995 feature THE WAVE, which premiered at the AFI Video Festival in Los Angeles and screened at the AFI National Film Theatre at the Kennedy Center. He is the director and founder of Spooky Movie: The Washington, D.C. International Horror Film Festival.
This evening is a joint presentation of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Showcase (MARS), and the Spooky Movie’s Midsummer Night’s Scream programs. As part of the premiere event, there will be a preview of Spooky Movie 2009 festival, which will have its opening night Wednesday, October 21 at the AFI Silver Theatre, and will feature a Q&A following the screening, led by documentary filmmaker Jeff Krulik (HEAVY METAL PARKING LOT) with panelists Mr. Prather and Mr. Dyszel. The trailer is available online: www.youtube.com/watch?v=LbkErFJ4v2M
About the American Film Institute
The AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center is the flagship exhibition space of the American Film Institute and is one of the Washington area’s proudest cultural landmarks. Located in Silver Spring, MD, the AFI Silver offers a year-round program of the best in American and international cinema, featuring a dynamic mix of first-run movies, festivals, premieres, retrospectives, special events, tributes, on-stage guest appearances and education and community programs. Anchored by the stunning interior of the 1938 Silver Theatre, the 49,000 square-foot one-of-a-kind AFI Silver combines the latest in broadcast technology and state-of-the-art film and video exhibition in its three theatres, office and meeting spaces, production and broadcast facilities, and reception and exhibition areas.  On the Web at www.AFI.com/Silver 
About Spooky Movie
Spooky Movie is Washington, D.C.’s International Horror Film Festival, founded in 2006 to showcase the best independent genre filmmaking from around the world. The 4th annual festival will be held October 21-25 at theatres around Washington, D.C., including the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center. Additional information about Spooky Movie is available at www.thespookymovie.com.

Every Other Day is Halloween – Official Trailer

Posted in Every Other Day is Halloween on May 19, 2009 by everyotherdayishalloween

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Our first review – BadLit.com

Posted in Every Other Day is Halloween on May 19, 2009 by everyotherdayishalloween

Really nice review from the best website devoted to indie and underground cinema today:


With horror movies, after the screaming comes the laughter — The shedding of the intense emotion built up through carefully calibrated techniques designed to make us afraid. We laugh at the ridiculousness of becoming so caught up in something so blatantly manipulative.

This is why horror movies have long attracted the concept of the jokey TV host, the person dressed in familiar horror garb who pops up every couple of minutes to tell us that it was ok to be afraid and who enhances the laughing at ourselves with visual gags and corny jokes. It’s comforting to have that reassurance, then get sent back in for another scare after the commercial break.

Every Other Day Is Halloween is a documentary portrait of a beloved TV horror movie host, Count Gore De Vol, who hosted the popular Creature Feature program in the Washington D.C. area from 1973 to 1987. Horror hosts were popular back in the day when local TV stations provided regional fare instead of being just feeds from national networks. While not every local community was blessed with a horror host, with Every Other Day Is Halloween, director C.W. Prather has made a nostalgic ode that makes you wish you had your own Gore De Vol on your own TV.

The man behind the cape and faux Transylvanian accent is Dick Dyszel, who comes across in the film as an incredibly charming, thoughtful and gracious man. Dyszel is a TV hosting legend. The “other” in the documentary’s title refers to Dyszel’s multiple TV personas. In addition to Gore De Vol, he also starred as Washington D.C.’s local Bozo the Clown as well as another local creation: Captain 20, a sci-fi inspired children’s show afternoon host, complete with Spock ears and purple wig.

Although Bozo and Captain 20 weren’t Dyszel’s creations, he fought hard to put his own stamp on them and to create kids’ programming that was actually stimulating for children. For example, he turned his Bozo show into a fun game show that really made the kids the stars of the program. But as his reward, Dyszel raised the ire of Bozo creator Larry Harmon who was unahppy that somebody else was putting a new spin on his creation.

Not content to just be a cathode ray tube babysitting substitute, Dyszel convinced station executives to give him an adult show. Although a character of Dyszel’s own invention, Count Gore De Vol followed in the tradition pioneered by Maila Nurmi as Vampira, the Los Angeles horror host of the ’50s, and continued by John Zacherle aka Zacherley “The Cool Ghoul” in Philadelphia and NYC, and others.

Every Other Day Is Halloween includes a ton of clips from De Vol’s Creature Feature program, which was filled with the typical bad jokes and puns one expects from a horror host. But Dyszel also successfully kept the show topical with political humor since he was located in the heart of D.C. as well as appealing to adult sensibilities with vaguely risque material, such as the annual tradition of having on Penthouse’s Pet of the Year for some sketches.

But Dyszel also made Creature Feature an interactive show for the adults, like he did with the kids shows. To get around SAG rules that he couldn’t have non-union actors appearing on the show, he held contests where the prize was an appearance on the program. The benefit was two-fold: It allowed people onto the show that Dyszel could swap jokes with and it gave the audience at home an opportunity to become more invested in Creature Feature by giving them the dream of appearing on their favorite program.

Overall, Every Other Day Is Halloween is a positive documentary. In addition to Dyszel’s story, the film concludes with a look at the spawn of Gore De Vol. Although local stations don’t do horror hosting anymore, Dyszel took his character online where he still does sketches and presents films — and a new generation has followed him there. Horror hosts abound on the Internet now taking what was once a regional phenomenon to the global stage.

Although it’s nice to see that the horror host tradition hasn’t died completely, there’s something unmistakeably tragic about the loss of regional programming. In the film, Dyszel relates a sad, familiar story of the little station bought by a larger conglomerate that only analyzed the numbers and the bottom line. That Dyszel was influencing future local stars like underground filmmaking legend Jeff Krulik (Heavy Metal Parking Lot) and horror writer Steve Niles (30 Days of Night) just wasn’t important enough to keep Count Gore De Vol undead on TV.

Dick Dyszel is a fighter though, that much is clear from the documentary. He truly has a vampire’s most vital quality: The ability to never say die. To watch him do his thing online, please visit the official Count Gore De Vol website. And visit the Count’s alter ego Dick Dyszel’s official site.


AFI Program Guide!

Posted in Every Other Day is Halloween on May 19, 2009 by everyotherdayishalloween

Check out page 11 of the recent AFI Silver Theatre Program Guide.


We’re sharing a page with the new Jim Jarmusch film!