No kicking of zombie ass allowed in Graham

From left, Nurse Connie Lingus (Chaselyn Wade), preacher’s wife Janice Jeffress (Krystal Summers) and not-a-preacher’s wife Tipper Sommore (Jenna Skyy) take a terrifying ride.

Dallas filmmaker Israel Luna is working feverishly to put the finishing touches on his latest film, Kicking Zombie Ass For Jesus, which will premier Monday, Aug. 28, at The Texas Theatre, 231 W. Jefferson Blvd.

Show time is at 7:30 p.m., and fans of Israel’s films — old fans, new fans and fans yet-to-be — can expect to see many of their favorite LaLuna actors — Richard D. Curtin, Krystal Summers, Cassie Nova, Jenna Skyy, Willam Belli, Chaselyn Wade, Brad Pritchett and others —  in what Israel proudly describes as “incorporating the jittery, sloppy editing and outrageously violent and sometimes bizarre subject matter that places it in the category of a modern-day grindhouse film.”

Pastor Samuel Jeffress (Richard D, Curtin)

The premise of the movie is that a “miracle pill” intended to cure all the viral infectious diseases (like HIV) has instead turned everyone who took it into a zombie. And in one small Texas town, the only non-zombies left are a right-wing preacher, his crazy congregation and a group of LGBT folks, who now have to band together and try to overcome their own differences as they struggle to survive the zombie onslaught.

Who wouldn’t want to see THIS film? I mean, seriously, grindhouse zombies, Bible-thumpers and the gays (and lesbians and trans folk)?! Personally, I cannot wait. I am rounding up all my friends to be there on the 28th!

But apparently, some folks aren’t as excited as I am.

Israel and his cast and crew headed out to Graham, Texas to film a large portion of the movie. Graham, in case you didn’t know, is about two-and-a-half hours northwest of the DFW Metroplex. Graham is the county seat of Young County. It covers about 5.6 square miles and, as of last year, had a population of about 8,800 people.

According to Wikipedia, is the hometown of Rebecca Beale, who won the second season of the Kids Baking Championship, former Pantera bass player Rex Brown, NFL Hall of Famer Bob Lilly, PGA champ Bob Estes, former congressman Willliam D. McFarlane, Ronald Reagan’s national security advisor Robert McFarlane, 1952 track and field Olympic gold medalist Dean Smith, AND “Owen J. Baggett, the WWII B-24 Liberator crew member who on March 31, 1943 killed a Japanese pilot in his Zero aircraft while dangling from a parachute — the best shot by a .45-caliber M1911 pistol of ALL TIME.”

Zombie Adam

But what Graham is NOT, is interested in seeing the movie that Israel Luna shot there.

Now, Israel already knew that not everybody in Graham was happy to have his cast and crew there making this movie. While some of his own younger relatives had spread the word that Israel was looking for younger folks to serve as zombie extras, some of the teachers at the school were warning their students to steer clear of the movie folks. And, Israel said, one man who had talked to Richard Curtin about his kid (the town resident’s kid, not Richard’s) being a zombie extra, later went on Facebook to warn his fellow Graham residents that the cast and crew was full of homos and other perverts who were looking for children (apparently to recruit them to homosexuality or something).

But Israel had gotten help from Pam and Dave Scott, proprietors of the local Graham Drive-In Theater. And so he was looking forward to taking his finished film back to Graham, for a screening at the drive-in. But the Scotts turned him down:

“Hello Israel. Glad you are still producing film and working in the area. Unfortunately I do not think the movie you have produced will work in our area. We are a strong Baptist community and I think even the title of your  film would be offensive to many. In a small community I have to be careful about the product I put on screen. I wish you the best of luck with the new film and your future productions.
The Scott’s.”

Thankfully, the folks at the Texas Theatre aren’t so prudish. Or Baptist. Or whatever.

 

—  Tammye Nash

DVtv in Spayse: Our April 21 show

The first few minutes of our April 21 show didn’t record, so we — me, Brad Pritchett, Brandi Amara Skyy and Israel Luna — pick up talking about former Alabama state Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore, whose removal from the bench last year was upheld last week by a specially-appointed court of retired justices.

Check it out, and remember to watch us live each Friday at 4 p.m. on the Spayse Station YouTube channel. This next Friday, April 28, we start our new Pet of the Month video, featuring adoptable pets from the SPCA of Texas.

Do you have an idea for a DVtv video? Is there a topic you think we should discuss? Let me know at nash@dallasvoice.com (put DVtv in the subject line).

—  Tammye Nash

Coming Friday: DVtv in SPAYSE!

Last Friday, March 17, I participated in an episode of Don’t Panic!, Israel Luna’s internet radio/TV program that streams live every Friday on the Spayse Station YouTube Channel from 3-4 p.m. — live from Israel’s Spayse Studio. Joel S. Hoselton (aka entertainer Jenna Skyy) and poor college student Michael Anthony Garza were the other guests, along with Israel as the host. (You can also watch here, on the Spayse Studio Facebook page.)

You can watch it here.

I had a lot of fun, and now, I get to do it again!

On Friday, immediately after Don’t Panic! We are going to livestream the first episode of what I’m calling DVtv in Spayse!

Israel and I will be there, along with DVtv host Brad Pritchett and Dallas Voice’s newest freelance contributor, Brandi Amara Skyy. We’ll be talking about news, entertainment and more.

Put it on your schedule and check it out!

—  Tammye Nash

DVtv: Tiffany, Debbie Gibson light up 11th annual MetroBall

Debbie

Brad Pritchett and Israel Luna took DVtv to S4 on Friday night to talk to 80s pop princesses Debbie Gibson and Tiffany who performed at the 11th annual MetroBall, benefitting the Greg Dollgener Memorial AIDS Fund.

—  Tammye Nash

VIDEO: Wedding Party & Expo Part II

Screen shot 2016-03-22 at 11.25.34 AM

And we’re back for Part II of the DVtv video from The Wedding Party & Expo, An LGBT Community Event, held last Sunday afternoon, March 20, at Renaissance Dallas Hotel. The event was presented by Dallas Voice and hosted by Renaissance Dallas Hotel, and Al’s Formal Wear was the title sponsor. Other sponsors were Spectrum Financial Group, Carol Marks Music Agency, Fairfield Place Bed and Breakfast Inn, LGBTWeddings.com and PSAV. The event benefitted LEAP (Leadership, Education and Advocacy Program) and was hosted by celebrity wedding planner Donnie Brown.

(Watch Part I here.)

—  Tammye Nash

VIDEO: Wedding Party & Expo, Part 1

Screen shot 2016-03-22 at 10.57.25 AM

The Wedding Party & Expo presented Sunday at Renaissance Dallas Hotel, by Dallas Voice, was a big hit. If you were there, here’s your chance to relive the fun. If you weren’t there, here’s a look at what you missed.

This is the first of two videos from the Wedding Party and Expo through which Dallas Voice is relaunching DVtv. We have Israel Luna back to film and edit our segments and Brad Pritchett is back on the mike. Be sure and watch for future segments.

(Watch Part II here.)

—  Tammye Nash

‘Kicking Zombie Ass for Jesus’ to start filming in Texas next month

Israel lunaIt’s official: Filmmaker (and Dallas Voice video contributor) Israel Luna has gotten the financing (and even international distribution) in place for his new film, Kicking Zombie Ass for Jesus. The unofficial second installment in a proposed trilogy of satires that send-up traditional exploitation films but add a gay/transgender element, it concerns drag queens standing up against the zombie apocalypse armed only with their pumps and pump-action shotguns and a badass attitude.

The film will begin shooting on Oct. 7 and continue through most of the month in small towns around the state, including Graham, Eliasville, Olney and Mergerel. Luna describes it as “pro-Christian, pro-spirituality and pro-equality.” It will — as did his transpoitational grindhouse film Ticked-Off Trannies with Knivesfeature a cast of drag divas, including RuPaul’s Drag Racer Willam Belli.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

WATCH: Razzle Dazzle in 90 seconds

RazzleDazzleDallas

DVtv segment producer Israel Luna recently returned to Dallas after an 18-month stint in San Francisco. Give him a warm welcome home by checking out his piece below from Razzle Dazzle Dallas at Main Street Garden on Saturday. Also, if you haven’t seen Chuck Marcelo’s photo slideshow, you’re totally missing out.

—  John Wright

Luna launches Kickstarter campaign “For Jesus”

I imagine that Israel Luna’s resume lists three skills: (1) make movies; (2) throw parties; (3) stir up controversy. It’s not enough that he pissed off a few members of the trans community with his campy blaxploitation-esque grindhouse Ticked Off Trannies with Knives (even though the movie was all about empowerment); now he’s doing his best to anger the Christian right with his latest. The title? Kicking Zombie Ass for Jesus. (We imagine the zombie libby won’t be too happy, either.)

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Former Dallasite Israel Luna screens new film, ‘The Ouija Experiment,’ tonight at Magnolia

He may be living in San Francisco, but Israel Luna will always be part of Dallas to us. To Luna, too, actually it seems.

Luna — who caused a stir with his revenge fantasy Ticked-Off Trannies with Knives last year and has since made the slasher movie Fright Flick, is proving just how prolific he is, with a cast-and-crew screening of his third film in two years, The Ouija Experiment. This will be the first time most people who worked on the movie will get a chance to see it — and you can do, if you wanna buy a ticket. (It’s at Landmark’s Magnolia Theater tonight at 7:30 p.m.; tickets are available at the box office.

Now, we haven’t seen the movie yet, but even judging by the poster alone (we know, we know, books and their covers and all), it looks like a creepy little scarefest. And of course, we wish Israel the best of luck!

—  Arnold Wayne Jones