Oct 2012 31

by Aaron Colter

[Clio Suicide in Magica Sexualis]

Anthony Alvarado is an inquisitive man. Most of us grew up playing make-believe, pretending to be different people or different things. We played games like Bloody Mary, and often wondered how much we were told was real and how much in our minds what we perceived could be. Although magic and the occult have been seen as destructive elements in American society due to the puritanical roots of our religious culture, beings like monsters, wizards, ghosts and other worlds are no less improbable than the miracles of the Bible. Such strong beliefs, of any nature, can affect the way we perceive reality. Heaven, hell, angles and demons, how many people would swear on their very life that such manifestations are real?

Though children shed their belief in Santa and the Tooth Fairy, millions of humans still trick their minds into believing fantastic creations. After being struck by a profound revelation, of sorts, Alvarado decided to write a book about the many ways a person can start to open those channels of accepting the impossible. His curiosity is documented in a new book titled D.I.Y. Magic, a short and easy-to-read guide to some seemingly opposing practical actions a person can take to start to hack their brain into believing all sorts of reality bending events. No reason why Christian fundamentalists should have all the fun playing inside their heads. But, be warned, sometimes, if you want to swim in the chaotic, hallucinating waters of the psyche, then you’ll have to dive in the deep end.

Alvarado was kind enough to answer some questions about his inspiration for writing D.I.Y. Magic, which should be the perfect way to prepare that brain of yours for a truly frightening Halloween.

Aaron Colter: What made you want to write DIY Magic? It seems that the methods you mention have already been documented in other sources.

Anthony Alvarado: Some of the approaches have already been written about a ton, and so I didn’t try to re-write the book on stuff like lucid dreaming or flotation tanks. And stuff like Tarot cards I added a new twist to them: what happens when you design your own Tarot cards?

Some methods, there is very little information out there. Like keeping yourself suspended during the hypnogogic state for example, that’s pretty rare. I think a lot of people have stumbled on this trick from different paths, and been like, “Wow, this works, am I the only one who knows about this?” So yeah I hope for the reader it’s like a good mixtape: some stuff is like an old classic in a new context, and some stuff is brand new for you.

AC: I’m assuming you tried all of the tactics mentioned in the book? Which was the most effective? Were there things you tried that didn’t work at all?

AA: Yeah, I did try all of the tactics. I’m sure my girlfriend thought I was going crazy. Every day I’d be doing something weird. Taking naps with a big spoon in my hand and an empty bowl, or lying on the couch with ping-pong balls covering my eyes and listening to white noise, super loud.

Out of everything I tried, I was really surprised at how effective flotation tanks are. And I’m surprised that pretty much everybody hasn’t tried these yet. One trip will make you a believer. The stuff that didn’t work consistently I didn’t include in the book. That doesn’t mean that it might not work for some people: chanting, and dancing, and drumming – there are a whole bunch of rituals that are some people’s cup of tea but not mine.

AC: Are there methods you still use today?

AA: Absolutely! I’m a fiction writer and I’m constantly searching for new ways to get into the deep end of whatever project I’m working on. My hope for this book is that it will find its way not only into the hands of people interested in magic, but writers, storytellers, poets, comics artists, musicians. My book is spinach for the muscles of the imagination! I’ve been playing around a lot lately with using Tarot and other idea/symbol generating engines to add an element of chance. I also have found that the more attention I pay to dreams in the morning, the more likely I am to have a flash of inspiration for a story while taking my morning shower.

AC: What’s your favorite tip or suggestion in the book?

AA: I kind of like the simple ones. Like grow a beard or buy a weird looking jacket you would never normally wear, and watch how much it changes your day-to-day, because people react to you differently.

AC: How did you go about selecting the illustrations in the book?

AA: I was lucky to have my friend Jason Leivan, the owner of Floating World comics, curate all of the illustrations. He is really plugged into the underground comics and art scene, and the roster of artists he pulled together for D.I.Y. Magic is awesome. I felt honored to have illustrations by artists like Farel Dalrymple and Ron Regé, Jr. because I’ve been reading their comics for years.

AC: What’s the most significant paranormal or outside-of-reality event you’ve ever experienced?

AA: I had a full blown mystic epiphany type experience, some years ago, that happened suddenly while I was walking past an oak tree. I won’t go into detail about it here, because it would take pages and pages. It was basically this intense realization of . . . the incredible strangeness that the world exists. You know, why is there something instead of nothing? But it was overpowering. I could hardly talk for 24 hours. And it seemingly came out of nowhere. I was like, what the heck was that? Later, it was through reading about other people’s experiences, that I started getting into a lot of the ideas that eventually became D.I.Y. Magic.

I’ve since learned that you can’t really convey the reality of a mystic experience. If you try, it just ends up sounding cheesy, like listening to somebody else’s drug trip. You can only write down pointers on how to get there.

AC: Do you think most modern mages, wizards, psychics, yogis, etc. are legit? How do you find the true believers from the snake oil salesmen? And, in the end, if you believe in it, does it even matter?

AA: What’s the Bible say about judge a tree by its fruit? It’s like that. I think you can tell by . . . well, is it working for them? And does it really work for you? The spell, or the yoga pose, or whatever.

At the same time, you’ve got a good point, does it matter? There is a teacher at the yoga studio I go to who is so amazingly cheesy, vapid, and New Agey, that I have a hard time not cracking up during downward dog. But his classes are just as demanding a workout as the other yoga teachers, so I guess it works. At least if all you want from the class is a good workout.

AC: If you could only give one piece of practical advice to someone trying to shake up the mundane, what would it be?

AA: Meditate. Just take 10 minutes every morning, sit down and empty out your thoughts. It does so much for you, and if everybody in the world did it we would be living in a different reality.


Oct 2012 30

by Damon Martin

[Bob and Kemper Suicide in Droids You’re Looking For]

For years, George Lucas has said that he wanted to pass along the Star Wars franchise to a new generation of fans, and with a $4 billion sale he’s done just that.

Lucas, who was the 100-percent sole owner of Lucasfilm, sold the property to Disney on Tuesday for a reported $4 billion sale price. Half of the transaction will be paid to Lucas in cash, with the other half coming in the form of 40 million shares of stock.

The purchase of Lucasfilm will also ensure a new Star Wars movie currently titled “Episode 7” will make it into theaters in 2015.

Current Lucasfilm co-chairman Kathleen Kennedy will now become Lucasfilm President, reporting directly to Disney head Alan Horn. Kennedy will also oversee the Star Wars franchise, and along with George Lucas, will begin immediate development on Star Wars: Episode 7. This will be the first major Star Wars film in theaters since Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith, which was released in 2005.

“For the past 35 years, one of my greatest pleasures has been to see Star Wars passed from one generation to the next,” said George Lucas, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Lucasfilm via press release. “It’s now time for me to pass Star Wars on to a new generation of filmmakers. I’ve always believed that Star Wars could live beyond me, and I thought it was important to set up the transition during my lifetime.

“I’m confident that with Lucasfilm under the leadership of Kathleen Kennedy, and having a new home within the Disney organization, Star Wars will certainly live on and flourish for many generations to come. Disney’s reach and experience give Lucasfilm the opportunity to blaze new trails in film, television, interactive media, theme parks, live entertainment, and consumer products.”

Disney’s purchase of Lucasfilm adds onto its already impressive list of companies already under the corporation’s control. Over the last few years, Disney has purchased Marvel Comics and Pixar Films, and now Lucasfilm joins the family as well.

Disney executives announced on a conference call with media that following the release of Star Wars: Episode 7, they will continue with episodes 8 and 9, with plans in place to release a new Star Wars film “every 2 to 3 years” after that. Executives stated that Episode 8 will likely land in theaters in 2017, followed by Episode 9 in 2019.

The purchase also includes the entire Indiana Jones franchise, Industrial Light and Magic, and Skywalker Sound. Disney also announced that the Star Wars franchise will become an integral part of their theme parks world wide.

But fans are no doubt wondering, will this move introduce a new generation to a rebranded and reinvigorated version of Star Wars or will the franchise be watered down with new films that ruin the legacy of the original trilogy and the iconic status of the sci-fi legend?

Oct 2012 30

by Daniel Robert Epstein

“You have to know who you are and where you are at all times and never lose track of that.” – Queen Latifah

After Will Smith, Queen Latifah is the only person to have crossed so successfully from hip-hop into movies and television. Even though Queen received her first Oscar nomination for her performance in 2002’’s Chicago, she still hasn’’t forgotten her music or comedy roots. Her next album is being released this month, her next big budget movie is Taxi with Jimmy Fallon, and her latest is a film she produced herself, The Cookout.

Read our interview with Queen Latifah on

Oct 2012 29

by Daniel Robert Epstein

“I think we all have been underestimated and manipulated to some extent.”
– Neve Campbell

Neve Campbell has become an old favorite of SuicideGirls since I spoke to her last year for her movie The Company. Well now Neve is back in When Will I Be Loved. A sexually charged role for that genius of a pervert James Toback, the writer/director of such films as The Pick-up Artist and Two Girls and a Guy.

Neve Campbell plays Vera, a femme fatale for the 21st century, a beautiful, capricious young woman exploring the limits of her sexual and intellectual power. Her boyfriend Ford [Frederick Weller] is a fast-talking hustler prepared to do anything to make a buck. He sees his chance to make big money when he meets aging Italian media mogul Count Tommaso [Dominic Chianese] and cooks up an idea to pimp Vera out to the Count for $100,000 — easy money. Everything appears to be going even better than planned but the men have gravely underestimated Vera.

Read our interview with Neve Campbell on

Oct 2012 26

A.J. Focht

Warner Bros. has walked away the victor in the legal battle with the heirs of Superman co-creator Joseph Shuster. Warner Bros. retains rights to the Man of Steel. The big news here is Warner Bros. is moving forward with the Justice League movie. They will start on it next year and plan to release the Justice League movie in 2015.

Last week, it was revealed that Agent Coulson would be returning on the upcoming S.H.I.E.L.D. television series. Coulson isn’t the only Agent confirmed for the show, Ming-Na Wen has been cast as Agent Melinda May in the series. These are the only confirmed cast members so far. There is no word as to whether or not Cobie Smulders will be reprising her role as Agent Maria Hill. Joss Whedon is co-writing the script with his brother Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen.

It was a big week as the Iron Man 3 marketing campaign put their thrusters on over-drive. First, the official synopsis for the third movie was released as well as several new stills and posters. After fans finished ‘powering up Iron Man’s core’ in the Facebook campaign, a teaser trailer was released to introduce the full length trailer released on Tuesday. Iron Man 3 is set to release in theaters on April 26, 2013.

Captain America: Winter Soldier is currently in the casting phase, and it looks like Frank Grillo is taking the role of Crossbones. Crossbones is an assassin who worked for the Red Skull. Most notably, Crossbones is the man who killed Captain America after the Marvel Civil War. The film is scheduled to release on April 4th, 2014.

The Wolverine movie is coming to theaters on July 26, 2013. While the casting is long over, it looks like there is a last minute cameo appearance from one of the original X-Men. Rumor is that Famke Janssen will reprise her role as Jean Grey from the original X-Men trilogy.

There are more video game based movies on the horizon. It’s been a while since there has been news on the Mass Effect movie, but Legendary Pictures is still moving forward with it. Now Morgan Davis Foehl has been assigned with penning the script for the film. Mass Effect isn’t the only video game movie in progress. New Regency will finance and distribute the Assassin’s Creed movie with Michael Fassbender set to star in the film.

The first television spot for The Hobbit has been released. Sir Ian McKellen recently updated his blog to talk about the pros and cons of returning for The Hobbit. The run time of the film is slightly longer than was expected, coming in just under three hours long. The first Hobbit movie is completed set and ready for theaters on December 14, 2012. Also, it’s been revealed that Stephen Colbert will be making a cameo in one of the sequels.

The trailer for the Evil Dead remake is now online. The film promises not only the return of several of the best moments from the original film, but also more gore and depravity than any of the originals. Evil Dead is opening in theaters on April 13, 2013.

The third episode of the third season of Walking Dead has been widely hailed as one of the best episodes in the series. If a new episode each week isn’t enough to fill your zombiefied cravings, the new the Walking Dead Magazine is your one stop of all upcoming franchise news. The first issue recaps the comic series so far and covers what is coming up next in the television series. There are multiple interviews in the first issue, including an excellent and revealing interview with executive producer and writer Robert Kirkman. The cover story from the magazine gives readers an in depth look at the katana wielding Michonne. Kirkman describes Michonne as the ‘Boba Fett of the Walking Dead universe’ and gives more insight into the mysterious character. The Walking Dead Magazine is a must for fans looking for all the official news behind the comic book and television series.

Oct 2012 24

by Daniel Robert Epstein

“If you get a quarter and scratch the Megadeth logo off the album it says Mustaine underneath it. Nothing changed one bit.”
– Dave Mustaine, Megadeth

Who the hell wasn’’t freaked out when Dave Mustaine got hurt and announced he was disbanding Megadeth? Just for the band to break up is bad enough, but then to know that Mustaine might never have played music again was scary. But luckily Mustaine rebounded and is now releasing, The System has Failed, Megadeth’’s final album even though none of the other guys from the band have contributed anything. That’’s mostly because this was originally set to be his solo album but because of label obligations it’’s now a Megadeth one.

Read our interview with Dave Mustaine on

Oct 2012 22

by Daniel Robert Epstein

“I maintain my emotional level by talking, I talk a lot. It’s kind of my way of relaxing.”
– Julianne Moore

Julianne Moore is by far the most beautiful redhead in Hollywood today, in fact she is one of the most beautiful women on the planet. She became even more wonderful when I found out how nice she is and what a great sense of humor she has.

She plays Telly Paretta in The Forgotten, a mother whose child was killed in a plane crash. Now a year later the whole world, including her husband and psychiatrist, is trying to convince her that her son never existed at all.

Even though she’’s playing a somber and heavy role, Moore never stopped cracking jokes and being brutally honest about her work.

Read our interview with Julianne Moore on