Usually tourist season doesn't pick up until April, but this year things started early and it was starting to begin in March. It might have something to do with some of the high profile projects involving Salem in the media recently.
There are three major things:
The first is last week's premiere of Rob Zombie's Lords of Salem at Cinema Salem.
We have been anticipating this movie since we first heard about it back in March '11, (edit: Actually, we learned about the idea when Rob started mentioning it during interviews in Fall '10)and it seems like a lot of locals got their hopes up and were expecting something a bit different. I loved the movie but general consensus in Salem is very negative, which disappoints me. I found the whole thing visually stunning, and even if there was a lack of character development and cohesive story line, the plot itself was fantastic. And hilarious. I love cheesy horror films and this one put a huge smile on my face throughout the entire thing.
The only thing that really disappointed me personally about the film was reading so much about it for the past few years only to see the final product and realize how much was cut during editing. A lot of it was important to deepening the plot, but I guess Rob figured in the end that the movie just had too many characters. Christopher Knight (aka Peter Brady)'s character, Lobster Joe, was cut entirely. Also, a lot of locals were waiting for the murder scene we had learned would happen in Engine House Pizza, but that was cut as well.
I'll write a more detailed synopsis and update soon! [edit: And here it is! Spoilers]
The second thing that's had people talking about Salem recently is "American Horror Story: Coven". When Kathy Bates was added to the cast, actor Dylan McDermott was asked how perfect she was for the cast and slipped saying "She really is. All the witches of Salem... There's plenty of them!"
The thought of Kathy Bates playing a Salem witch had us all so excited we thought we could die, but then director Ryan Murphy smashed our dreams by saying the season would be filmed in New Orleans. Don't give up hope yet, though, Murphy also stated that the show would be about "multiple cities" and they could really film anywhere. He is also on record saying he wants it to include "horror romance" and it will be set in "modern day".
The final exciting thing happening in Salem is the one that a lot of people aren't even aware of. For a while now film crews have been sneaking in and out of town to visit Christian Day, Lorelei, and all their minions and film for the upcoming TLC reality show that I'm hearing might be titled "Wicked Witches". I have a lot of insider information on the show that I'm not going to disclose because it's more fun if things are a surprise, but I can tell you that I really don't think a reality show about witches is going to embarrass witchcraft as much as people are speculating. It's just a TV show, and it's just for fun and the most important thing to remember is that, although they make money off witchcraft, these people are truly authentic witches bringing REAL witchcraft to the masses. It sounds like the stuff they're filming is hilarious and awesome. People are saying the show might come out in May, I have no idea.
Quick loose ends news round-up:
Because of cancellations at Boston Comic Con, Jason David Frank, the original green Power Ranger was at Harrison's Comics in Salem! This is the extremely long line to meet him.
(photo by John Andrews of Social Palates)
Estimates are that approximately 2,500 people turned out to the event on Salem Commons to support the victims of the Boston Marathon bombings.
Behind the scenes at Salem Film Fest. Amy Finkel, director of 'Furever' is interviewed before the screening of her film.
And last but not least, the sixth annual Salem Festival was absolutely huge this year, selling out most shows and playing some amazing documentaries.