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Category: Cast & Crew

Ghostbusters Cast Spotlight - Tara Charendoff/Strong in Sabrina TV Movies

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Nov. 28, 2017 at 11:30 PM , Categories: Cast & Crew , Tags: castspotlight
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Welcome to a new feature here on Spook Central, the Ghostbusters Cast Spotlight. Each entry in this series will showcase a cast member of the Ghostbusters franchise - Ghostbusters 1 & 2, The Real Ghostbusters, Slimer!, Extreme Ghostbusters, Ghostbusters: The Video Game, and maybe even Ghostbusters 2016 - in a role that you may not be familiar with. Maybe it will be from a long-forgotten movie, a television appearance before they were a Buster, or some really weird bit part that I'm sure they no longer include on their resume! There is a HUGE SPOILER WARNING if you read this article, as I am highly likely to go into plot details. This first Ghostbusters Cast Spotlight will be a double-length double feature focusing on the two late-1990s Sabrina The Teenage Witch TV movies featuring Tara Charendoff (voice of Kylie Griffin in Extreme Ghostbusters) as "Jellybean Queen" Gwen.

This article is dedicated to Doreen Mulman, one of my best friends, and the creator of the original TOTS: The Official Tara Strong website. Writing about these two movies takes me back to that great period of time in the late 1990s when we first met. Extreme Ghostbusters is what brought us together, but it was our shared loves of animation, voice actors, and horror movies - gotta love any woman that "gets" Elvira! - that made us friends. We would constantly tell each other about the latest appearance of Frank Welker or Tara Charendoff on TV, not least of which was because she ran both of their official websites, which I loved to help with. After Sabrina Goes To Rome aired back in 1998, I actually did two dozen VHS framegrabs and a few audio samples for The Sights and Sounds of Tara section we worked on together. (I never did get around to doing multimedia from Sabrina Down Under, which this article you're reading will rectify.) Doreen gave me the nickname Tiger, which I guess makes me Shiva to her Queen Ezekiel. An appropriate analogy given that we both loved The Walking Dead, and Ezekiel is portrayed by a voice actor (Khary Payton, aka Cyborg on Teen Titans - which also stars Tara).

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Spook Central Halloween Treat - Dan Aykroyd & Bill Murray Team Up With Spider-Man

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Oct. 31, 2015 at 12:00 PM , Categories: Cast & Crew, Books , Tags: halloween_treat
Halloween Treats

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This year's Halloween Treat is really special because it's not, specifically, Ghostbusters-related. It does feature two stars of Ghostbusters: Dan Aykroyd and Bill Murray.

Thirty-seven years ago, long before there was a Marvel Cinematic Universe where everyone was teaming up with everyone else, there was a comic book series titled "Marvel Team-Up". As you would expect from that name, it featured collaborations between different characters in the Marvel canon. What you wouldn't expect, however, is that issue #74 featured Marvel regular, Spider-Man, teaming up with Saturday Night Live's Not-Ready-For-Primetime-Players. Yeah, Peter Parker and Mary Jane shared the stage with Dan Aykroyd, John Belushi, Jane Curtin, Garrett Morris, Bill Murray, Laraine Newman, Gilda Radner, and Saturday Night Live creator Lorne Michaels. Oh, and Stan Lee even makes his usual cameo appearance, long before that would be his usual thing.

I, honestly, have no idea what prompted this rather unusual cross-over. Saturday Night Live was three-years-old at the time and was pretty popular, but it would be another five months before they would spoof superheroes with the now-classic Superhero Party sketch (aired on March 17, 1979 with host Margot Kidder). I guess the folks at Marvel were just big SNL fans.

Sadly, this issue has never been published again since October 1978. When Marvel reprinted Marvel Team-Up issues #52 through #75 in Essential Marvel Team-Up, Vol. 3 (ISBN 978-0785130680), it was not included because they don't own the rights to the Saturday Night Live property, and either NBC didn't want to play ball, or there were issues with the likeness rights of the individual actors. What ever the case may be, I carefully scanned in my personal copy, and I'm sharing it so everyone can enjoy this classic craziness. Super big thanks to Matthew Jordan for cleaning-up the pages so they look even better than the actual 37-year-old book. Click on the cover to download the PDF.

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(10.6 Mb)

For more Halloween Treats, check out my other site/blog, where you can find the movie scripts for Who Shot (Framed) Roger Rabbit and the Full Moon Pictures classic Arcade. For more on this issue, besides the sites I linked to throughout this post, also check out iFanboy and Brian's Comics.

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For the complete list of Spook Central's Halloween Treat posts from years past, click here. Thanks to Miss Kate for the "Halloween Treat" title banner that appears at the top of this post.
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The Story Behind The Ivan Reitman Signed Ghostbusters Comic Book

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Jul. 6, 2015 at 11:30 PM , Categories: Personal, Cast & Crew, Books
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Life is strange sometimes.

You see that glorious Ghostbusters Infestation #2 comic book signed on the cover by Ivan Reitman, director of Ghostbusters 1 & 2, and lots of other classic comedy films? I received that in the mail today, but how it got to me is quite a story.

A few weeks ago, the day after my birthday no less, I received an e-mail from Eric Reich of The Montecito Picture Company. For those of you who don't know, that's Ivan Reitman's production company. He wrote to tell me that they found a comic book Ivan had signed for me a long time ago, which had gotten returned and apparently got lost in a pile.

The wheels started turning in my head. I'm sure that I sent Ivan a comic to sign (that sounds like something I'd do), but it had to have been quite a long time ago because it's not something that was fresh in my mind. I couldn't even remember what kind of Ghostbusters comic I had sent him. I was sure about one thing: they must have sent the comic to my old address; the house I was living in before Hurricane Sandy destroyed it in October 2012. So, I immediately got in touch with Eric and gave him my current mailing address.

Fast forward a week and a half, and I find this in my mailbox today.

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I carefully pry it open and inside is my original self-addressed stamped envelope. Sure enough, there's my old mailing address on it in my own hand-writing, along with the U.S. Postal Service's yellow "Return to Sender, Unable to Forward" sticker.

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I lift the flap on the back and I notice that I, very wisely, wrote a note to myself about who I wrote to, what I sent, and most importantly, WHEN I sent it.

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I mailed the comic to Ivan back in June 2011. That makes sense as this comic was released on March 23, 2011. So, this wouldn't have been part of my autograph collecting wave in the early 2000s. For those of you who just did the math, it took four years for this comic to come back to me signed. That's the longest I ever waited for an autograph through the mail. He beat Weird Al Yankovic's three year turnaround time, and all I got in return was a small black & white lithograph photo.

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A Montecito Picture Company/Ivan Reitman note card apologizing for the delay was also included, along with my original typed letter (my handwriting sucks, so I type my fan letters). I mentioned Spook Central in my letter, with the SpookCentral.cjb.net url that the site was using at that time. That address died on April 1, 2013 when CJB cancelled their free service, without any forewarning to their users. If you're playing along at home, that means that the folks at Montecito DIDN'T have my current mailing address, e-mail address, or website address. It's quite a miracle that Eric took the time to track me down online. I guess that's why I should be glad that I use my real name on Spook Central instead of hiding behind a screen name.

So, thanks to Ivan Reitman for signing my comic, and HUGE THANKS to Eric Reich for making sure it got to me. This now brings my signed Ghostbusters comic book collection to seven books (two from Dan Schoening). I never intended on having such a niche collection, but I like the way it's turned out. Looks like I should now send a comic out to Paul Feig so I can get the other Ghostbusters director in this very specialized collection :-)

Oh, and since some of you may ask, here's the mailing label for The Montecito Picture Company with their two addresses on it. I see no harm in sharing this since the addresses are public knowledge. I used the Montecito address.

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Paul's Real Ghostbusters Voice Actor Letter

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Jun. 25, 2015 at 12:00 PM , Categories: Real Ghostbusters, Cast & Crew
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Hey, everyone! Since today is my birthday, I thought I'd mark the occasion by posting something personal and Ghostbusters-related. As I been scanning in all of my Ghostbusters merchandise, I've been finding long-forgotten items. One item I found tucked inside a folder of Ghostbusters papers was this clipping of a question/letter I wrote in to Long Island Newsday's "TV Line" Q&A column that was printed in their TV listings magazine included in the Sunday newspaper. This would have been published sometime between September 1987 (when the voice cast changed) and July 1989 (when I moved out of Westbury).

For some reason, I pretended to be a father, instead of admitting that I was a kid watching the show. Maybe I thought that they wouldn't have replied to a kid's letter. Even at roughly 10-to-12 years old, I wanted to know the behind the scenes info. Yeah, I learned the names of the voice actors from the show's end credits, but I didn't know who voiced whom. There was no internet back then with which to look up this information. For whatever reason, I didn't ask about Egon, but it's not like I couldn't have figured out that it was Maurice LaMarche from process-of-elimination.
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Harold Ramis' Premiere Magazine Article

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Feb. 24, 2015 at 12:00 PM , Categories: Cast & Crew
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It was a year ago, today, that Harold Ramis died. We here at Spook Central have been remembering him this past week via a series of photos on the Spook Central Facebook page. To further the remembrance, I am pleased to make available an article Harold wrote for the August 2000 issue of Premiere magazine. Entitled "Sinning Isn't Everything", and meant to help promote Harold's then-new film Bedazzled (a remake starring Brendan Fraser and Elizabeth Hurley about a guy who made a deal with the devil), Harold gives advice to his fellow directors about Hollywood's Seven Deadly Sins.

Click on the cover image below to download the article PDF. Big thanks to Matthew Jordan for piecing together the cover image, which I had to scan in two parts.

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To add to the celebration of his life, here is Harold's biography, as it was written for the Ghostbusters Press Kit in 1984. This is a scan from the re-print as it appeared in the Ghostbusters 1 & 2 Blu-ray Digibook.

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In Loving Memory of Joel Richard Rudoff (July 28, 1944 - January 20, 2014)

In Loving Memory of Linda Joyce Rudoff (July 12, 1948 - November 29, 2015)

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