MUSINGS OF A STORY MERCHANT
For Every Author Who Wants To Make Their Dreams Come True And Finish Writing Their Book! ...
Sunday, May 31, 2009
Saturday, May 30, 2009
PROVIDENCE, R.I._(May 26, 2009)_ The 2009 New England Book Festival has issued a call for entries to its annual program celebrating the best books of the holiday season.
The competition will accept entries in the non-fiction, fiction, biography/autobiography, children's books, teenage, how-to, cookbooks, science fiction, audio/spoken word, photography/art, poetry, spiritual works, e-books, compilations/anthologies, genre-based, unpublished stories and wild card (for books that don't neatly fit other categories) categories published on or after Jan. 1, 2002. All entries must be in English.
Our grand prize for the 2009 New England Book Festival winner is $1500 cash and a publicity campaign during the post-holiday season spotlighting your work. The winning author will also have a choice of flights to our various awards ceremonies for our family of festivals and a free vendor table at the 2010 day events, including New York, Hollywood and London.
Submitted works will be judged by a panel of industry experts using the following criteria:
1) General excellence and the author's passion for telling a good story.
2) The potential of the work to reach a wider audience.
ENTRIES: Please classify your book and enter it in the following categories. Multiple entries must be accompanied by a separate fee for each book.
1) General Non-fiction
2) General Fiction
3) Children's books
12) Audio/spoken word
14) Best Unpublished Short Story
16) Science Fiction
17) Wild Card
18) Unpublished Stories
In addition to honoring the top selections in the above categories, The New England Book Festival will award the following chosen from submissions:
1) Author of the Year- Honors the outstanding book of the competition.
2) Book Design of the Year - Honors outstanding and innovative design.
3) Publisher of the Year- Honors the top publisher based on materials displaying excellence in marketing and promotional materials, as determined by our judges.
FESTIVAL RULES: New England Book Festival submissions cannot be returned. Each entry must contain the official entry form, including your e-mail address and contact telephone number. All shipping and handling costs must be borne by entrants.
NOTIFICATION AND DEADLINES: We will notify each entry of the receipt of their package via e-mail and will announce the winning entries on our web site (www.newenglandbookfestival.com). Because of the anticipated high volume of entries, we can only respond to e-mail inquiries.
Deadline submissions in each category must be postmarked by midnight on November 29, 2009. Winners in each category will be notified by e-mail and on the web site. Please note that judges read and consider submissions on an ongoing basis, comparing early entries with later submissions at our meetings.
TO ENTER: Entry forms are available online at www.diyconvention.com or may be faxed/e-mailed to you. Please contact our office at 323-665-8080 for fax requests. Applications must be accompanied by a non-refundable entry fee of $50 in the form of a check, money order or PayPal online payment in U.S. dollars for each submission. Multiple submissions are permitted but each entry must be accompanied by a separate form and entry fee.
You can also enter the contest by phone by calling 323-665-8080 between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Pacific time.
Entry fee checks should be made payable to JM Northern Media LLC. We're sorry, but entries must be mailed and cannot be delivered in person or by messenger services to the JM Northern Media offices.
Entry packages MUST include:
1) One copy of the book;
2) A copy of your official entry form or a reasonable facsimile;
3) The entry fee or receipt for online payment;
4) Any marketing materials you wish to send. Marketing is used as a tie-breaking consideration by our judges.
Entries should be mailed to:
JM Northern Media LLC
attn: New England Book Festival
7095 Hollywood Boulevard
Hollywood, CA 90028-0893
AWARDS: The New England Book Festival selection committee reserves the right to determine the eligibility of any project.
The 2009 New England Book Festival is part of the JM Northern Media family of festivals, which include the DIY Convention:
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Thursday, May 28, 2009
Each roll carries several copies of a new nine-chapter novella written by Koji Suzuki, the Japanese author of the horror story "Ring," which has been made into movies in both Japan and Hollywood.
"Drop," set in a public restroom, takes up about three feet (90 centimeters) of a roll and can be read in just a few minutes, according to the manufacturer, Hayashi Paper.
The company promotes the toilet paper, which will sell for 210 yen ($2.20) a roll, as "a horror experience in the toilet."
Toilets in Japan were traditionally tucked away in a dark corner of the house due to religious beliefs. Parents would tease children that a hairy hand might pull them down into the dark pool below.
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
By Guy Roberts
Sat 23rd May, 2009
Cherry Kiss Burlesque, visiting the 2009 Prague Fringe Festival for the first time from Hollywood, California, provide a retrospective of the twelve major works of iconic film-maker Stanley Kubrick explored through the lens of traditional burlesque. Using Kubrick’s films as the frame, directors Crystal Swarovski and Polly Peabody, employ a bevy of beauties, colorful, elaborate costumes and fast-paced, charming musical selections as they salute the female form and challenge popular conceptions associated with such canonical films as 2001, Lolita, Spartacus and the Shining among others.
One thing that is really hard to do is to be both funny and sexy at the same time and Kubrilesque often succeeds at both. This is a thinking person’s burlesque and the hordes of men prowling the streets as part of Prague’s ubiquitous stag parties will be well served to go straight to Darling Cabaret and leave this performance to people who actually like their sex served with a good dose of irony and playfulness.
The performers vary in skill, body types and ability. It seems no accident that two of the three most successful solo acts feature the directors. Crystal Swarovski’s “Killer’s Kiss” sets the standard with a routine featuring some traditional ballet and some not so traditional gloves and underwear. Smartly and humorously teasing the audience with scarves coming from places that would put Salome to shame, Swarovski playfully engaged one lucky audience member in a unique tug-o-war that will not be forgotten.
Director Polly Peabody is clearly both the most accomplished and comfortable performer in the burlesque. Sensuously slim and curvy, her coquettish singing in “Paths of Glory” almost stole the entire show and as Master of Ceremonies in the most suitably erotic portion of the evening “Éyes Wide Shut”, she lent a poise that kept that particularly infamous proceeding both appropriately bizarre, classy and sexy.
The most fun is without a doubt to be had during the “2001” sequence between the dancing gorillas and the Esther Williams inspired swimming sequence complete with perfectly synchronized eye-lash batting. A few slight wardrobe malfunctions seemed to inhibit one of the better and more seductive dancers in “Killing” where a terrifying clown excites us and then expires us in the best traditional of le petite morte. Bioloxi Brown in “Lolita”, with Woody Allen photo, lollipop and hula hoop gave the performance most resembling a modern strip-tease minus the nudity (there is none in the entire production). In “A Clockwork Orange”, we are given a terrifically spunky dance perfectly channeling the spirit of Malcolm McDowell (complete in white jock strap jumpsuit), so captivating it was almost a disappointment when the dancer began taking off her clothes. However when the clothes did start to fall away, followed by a burst of gorgeous red hair hidden underneath a wig, the sensuous contortions transformed the piece into a new realm of sexuality that the audience was sorry to have end. The smartest and one of the most electric moments of the evening came in “The Shining” when the girl behind the mirror comes to life, reaching across dimensions to embrace the possibility ever-present in the air of girl-on-girl action.
Overall, this will sure to be a hit of the Fringe Festival and the production was smart and sexy, but would benefit from a little more blatant sex appeal to balance the comedy and commentary. Kubrilesque is at its best when straddling (sometimes literally) the irony of the event and Kubrick’s work without apologizing for the sexuality of the performers.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Monday, May 25, 2009
Your Three Second Window
Changing Everyday Moments into Extraordinary Opportunities for Success.
In bookstores soon.
He is the author of three novels and the upcoming non-fiction title Your Three Second Window, Changing Everyday Moments into Extraordinary Opportunities for Success.
He currently lives and works in Seattle.
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Though my first official trip to the Cannes Film Festival was filled with business highlights--meeting the folks at Industry-Works and sealing our two-film deal that begins shooting this summer, attending the PGA beach party and meeting Stu Levy on the International Committee, attending the Louisiana Party and catching up with Chris Stelly of the Governor's Office of Film & Television and discussing the progress of Shreveport Studios, saying hello to Ehud Bleiberg and receiving my personal copy of his brilliant film "Adam Resurrected," meeting director Renny Harlin (thanks to an intro by Shreveport Mayor's Office Arlena Acree) and discussing potential projects, running into Emma Korvin who was interning at the Hollywood Reporter, running into AEI client Adria Lang, meeting actress Portia Lipton and her protégé Carol Lee, meeting the Bavarian Film Commissioner Anja Metzger re "Dracula: The Un-Dead," meeting Roy Tijioe and Ricardo Galindez of the Island Film Group to discuss "Surf Lessons," meeting Sam Blan of Stoplight Pictures, meeting Jan Susta of Czech Republic's Barrandov Studios, meeting Ondamax's Eric Mathis re "Hittin' the Bricks," meeting Mark Lester of American World Pictures, visiting Ami and Marcy Artzi and their lovely daughter re "Dracula," meeting Carola Ash via Judy Cairo of Future Films on their yacht re "Dracula"--there was still time for sidewalk cafes and a little enjoyment, including seeing the premiere of Pedro Almodovar's "Broken Embraces"--an outstanding film I highly recommend as one of his best yet.
Close encounters included Monica Bellucci, Jim Carrey, and Brad & Angelina.
Croissants and café consistently good, along with pommes-frites and wi fi availability. High point of culinary experience was the Italian restaurant, Il Viaggio, where we were hosted by Evan Tylor of Industry-Works. More pix to follow.
Saturday, May 23, 2009
Friday, May 22, 2009
AdaptAbility: How to Survive Change You Didn’t Ask For (Broadway Books; On
We all know how hard it is to make the changes we want to see in our lives, like losing weight or getting in shape.
But how do we deal with the changes that difficult times thrust upon us, like losing a job or living on less? How can we adapt when our industry suddenly becomes unrecognizable, when we’re unexpectedly forced to rethink a set career path or job?
AdaptAbility shows us how to get past our fear and resistance to change and, ultimately, re-train our brain to master new challenges.
Hailed by publications such as the New York Times, Women’s World, and the Wall Street Journal, M. J. Ryan is firmly positioned as a foremost expert on what it takes to create lasting change. As a consultant and executive coach with Professional Thinking Partners, renowned for their unique approach to helping people recognize, utilize, and develop intellectual assets, M. J. travels around the world advising individuals and large corporations (Frito Lay, Microsoft, Chevron, and the Department of Defense) alike on how to adapt during what is proving to be the greatest period of transformation human beings have ever experienced.
Combining the latest brain science, organizational/positive psychology, and spirituality, AdaptAbility offers the tools, techniques, attitudes, and behaviors required to adjust to changes in the workplace and in life.
M. J. realizes that our first reaction to unwanted change is usually negative. We tend to resist. We say: “I don’t want to.” “This isn’t fair.” “I don’t have the energy.” “I don’t have the time.” We feel fear and anger. In her book, she teaches the fundamentals needed to become a master of change.
These essentials will allow you to accept the need to adapt and become aware of your internal resources, including the innate thinking talents you bring to any situation, and learn how to get your brain on your side.
AdaptAbility is organized in compact chapters, each offering a quotation, a story from M. J.’s coaching practice, and a practical tool for becoming more flexible, more creative, and more agile in your thinking when provoked by change. We learn:
Our bodies’ physical and emotional reactions to change
Why self-care is crucial
How to live with uncertainty
How to identify new opportunities
How to align our thinking with our talents, values and purpose
We are all being called on to stretch mentally, emotionally, and spiritually into the future. AdaptAbility offers you both comfort and practical support as you take on this challenge, giving you the confidence to face whatever life sends your way. I highly recommend this book.
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Monday, May 18, 2009
Sunday, May 17, 2009
Demonkeeper is a young adult horror novel by Royce Buckingham that is as dark and light as a Tim Burton fairytale. For most children, living in a house inhabited by monsters would be the stuff of nightmares; but for teenager Nat, it is his job.
Left an old, creaky house and all its pesky occupants by his now deceased predecessor and mentor, Dhaliwahl, Nat is charged with becoming the new Demonkeeper. Things quickly go awry when, on the one night he leaves the house, the most violent and lethal of the demons escapes. Nat must track The Beast down, with the reluctant help of his new (human) friend, Sandy, a bookish, neat, and frankly desperate girl who is even worse at parallel parking than yours truly.
To make matters worse, a former pupil of Dhaliwahl’s who had fallen out of favour arrives back in town with a score to settle. Initially known only as The Thin Man, he has his own plans about catching and using The Beast.
Despite being billed as horror, there is a healthy dose of humour that would not look out of place in a Pixar movie. From the description and antics of two young boys who get caught up in the melee, to the characters of Nat’s three little “helper” demons, even The Thin Man’s real name unintentionally made me laugh. Perhaps not everyone will agree with Dhaliwahl’s assertion that “Marriage is attempting stability. To be a keeper is wrestling always with chaos”. For some, they may be one and the same.
Although there is a good deal of comedy and wit, there is also some undeniably horrific, primeval action. Even the delicacy of choice for The Beast is tragic, in a way. Buckingham’s book covers the not so subtle fears like demons under the bed and noises in the basement, and the darker, ultimately more frightening fear of simply being alone - making it a much more wholesome tome than your average Goosebumps.
Saturday, May 16, 2009
NURTURING THE CREATIVE SPARK
I spend a lot of my time on a daily basis re-inspiring and coaching clients. Thought I might share the wisdom I come across on the blog.
Here’s one from Kim Wright Wiley I saw in Selling Power (the same issue that interviewed me, below - May 2nd):
1. You always have a choice.
2. If you choose to complain, you’ll feel worse.
3. If you choose a positive outlook, your world will be full of possibility.
My advice: Put your moods aside and go back to work. Put your thoughts aside and go back to work. Put your feelings aside and go back to work. Put your sleeplessness aside and get up and go back to work! Creative work makes you feel better, act better, cope better, deal with your allies better!
As Shakespeare said, “Action is eloquence.”
Friday, May 15, 2009
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
GREAT GETAWAYS…. ROMANCE IN THE SEYCHELLES
By Lisa McCubbin
It was to be our first vacation without our kids in more than fifteen years—a romantic getaway to celebrate twenty years of marriage—and I was determined to find the perfect place. I scoured TripAdvisor for weeks and talked to everyone I knew, hoping to find a beach destination with a direct flight from Doha that would replicate our idyllic honeymoon in Tahiti, back in 1989. We finally decided on the Seychelles, an archipelago about a thousand miles off the coast of East Africa, and booked seven nights at the Banyan Tree Resort and Spa. It looked like the ideal spot for my husband and I to relax, re-connect and rekindle our passion. But would it live up to our expectations?
The Banyan Tree Resort and Spa sits on what is perhaps one of the most beautiful pieces of property in the world, overlooking the pure white sand of Intendance Beach on Mahé Island in the Seychelles. With the villas, restaurants and spa scattered across the hillside and along the long beach, the main mode of transportation around the resort is via “buggies” (chauffeured golf carts) that drive along steep, windy, cement paths, built unobtrusively into the landscape.
From the moment my husband and I stepped through the gates of our private villa, it was as if we’d entered another world. Perched on a hillside overlooking the turquoise sea was a huge outdoor living area complete with a pavilion, dining area, two-person lounger and a private infinity pool that beckoned you to skinny dip under the stars. Surrounded by coconut palm trees and lush vegetation, with only a mere hint of one other rooftop below, it felt like we were all alone on a tropical island.
We walked through the heavy sliding glass doors from the teak deck into the bedroom suite. Decorated in colonial plantation style with dark mahogany furniture and white fabrics, the room was elegant, without being opulent, like we’d entered the Kenyan home of a 19th century British explorer. The vaulted ceiling and oversized picture window looking through the jungle to the sea below gave the feeling that you were nestled among nature, while the mirrored wall behind the king sized bed, draped in luxurious linens, was a clear sign that romance was all part of the design.
Soft music emanated from tiny speakers hidden in crevices of the ceiling and scented candles had been lit for our arrival. I quickly understood why the Banyan Tree calls itself a “sanctuary for the senses.” We’d only just arrived, and already my mind felt clearer, relaxed.
The bathroom was yet another sight to behold in what are considered “standard” accommodations at the Banyan Tree. At one end of the room was a sunken bathtub and shower flanked by a floor to ceiling window that had a framed view through the ferns and palms, to the picturesque beach, at the bottom of the hill. I later learned that the founder of the resort group had hiked up the hillside and paced out the plans for the villas, making sure that each had breathtaking views, while maintaining a feeling of utter privacy. And that is exactly what you get.
It became our habit to have breakfast delivered to our villa each morning—it’s included in the room rate—and sit on the veranda, sipping coffee, eating fresh pineapple and other fruits from the resort’s own gardens, before heading down to the main pool area, near the beach. A teak deck surrounds the hotel’s long rectangular infinity pool, dotted with padded lounges arranged in pairs, far enough away from each other so you don’t feel as if you’re right on top of the other guests. The friendly pool staff would come by with cold bottled water and fresh fruit skewers—no charge—just when you felt like you needed some refreshment. From the cute brown and white beach bag provided in the room as a gift (how practical and fun!) to the cold, scented cloths brought to us as we sat by the pool, it was these constant small touches that made me feel as if somebody was anticipating my every need. We didn’t have a care in the world, it seemed—giving us the time and space to talk like we hadn’t talked in years, time to sit in silence and read, time to rediscover each other.
There were few children at the resort and, frankly, that’s the way the Banyan Tree management likes it.
“We don’t cater to children,” Rheinhold Johan, the general manager, told us. “Most people come here looking for a romantic getaway, and that’s what we provide. We have no Kids Club, no children’s menus.” In other words, if you’re looking for a family vacation, please, by all means, go elsewhere.
Speaking of menus… with three different restaurants, plus the poolside bar, there was plenty of variety and every meal we had was delicious. Au Jardin d’Epices offers a varied international menu with a stunning ocean view, while Chez Lamar prepares local Creole specialties in a colonial style house tucked into the jungle, overlooking a small pond. But the resort’s star restaurant is Saffron, offering a large selection of authentic Thai cuisine in an elegant and cozy atmosphere. The crab coconut soup, made with coconuts grown on the property, was undoubtedly one of the best things I’ve ever eaten, in my entire life. On our last night, we signed up for the Thai buffet upon the recommendation of another guest, and were treated to a dizzying array of fresh fish, shrimp, curries and satays, grilled to perfection.
I’d read that the beach was too rough for swimming, but during our stay, in April, the sea was calm, clear and ideal for snorkeling along the rocks. Rarely were there more than two or three other couples on the beach and, again, we felt like we had it all to ourselves.
One of the reasons we’d chosen the Banyan Tree was for its renowned spa and I was eager to see if it would live up to its reputation. Each treatment room is actually a stand-alone villa. Like the guest villas, the treatment rooms are nestled in the jungle, open to the sounds of birds and the waves crashing on the beach below, positioned so that you have a stunning view, with complete privacy. The spa menu offers a wide selection of massages, body treatments and facials, without being overwhelming, and the highly trained therapists will happily guide you to the treatment that best suits your needs. Most of the therapists are from Thailand, exotically beautiful, and exceptionally well-trained. Every spa therapist undergoes three months of formal training at Banyan Tree Spa Academy Phuket in Thailand, to ensure that each spa experience is of the same high level of consistency and quality. After the first three-hour Banyan Tree Royal Treatment in which my skin was gently scrubbed and massaged until I felt like someone had literally removed every ounce of stress, I signed up for massages every other day for the rest of the week.
It was each evening, when we returned to our villa, after an exquisite meal and a fine bottle of wine, however, that I really came to appreciate the exceptional level of service at the resort. Our private infinity pool would be lit up, a shimmering blue reflection in the darkness. And inside the bedroom, the bed would be turned down, with magenta flower petals scattered across the luxurious white sheets, as flickering candles gave the room a soft, romantic glow. The smell of amber or sandalwood or rose, permeated the room from the scented oil the housekeeper had chosen for the evening, as the soothing sound of a harp played from the CD player. It was indeed a “sanctuary for the senses.”
The Seychelles and the Banyan Tree Resort turned out to be everything I’d hoped for, and more. After twenty years of marriage, the ambiance of the Banyan Tree made it the perfect place to remember why we fell in love with each other all those years ago.
Monday, May 11, 2009
Straight out of the bayou! From the pen of renowned Louisiana moviemakers Glen Pitre & Michelle Benoit and under the direction of acclaimed master of the stage Perry Martin, a world premiere play…
In a hilarious love letter to the naughty comedy of burlesque, during the Roaring ‘20s, when a down on his luck impresario sees his paddlewheel showboat run aground in a forgotten Louisiana bayou, he uses the interlude to rebuild his vaudeville troupe. With his pockets empty, all he can offer is love, as he simultaneously romances the local piano teacher, a Cajun farmer’s daughter, and his own high-strung, ready-to-quit diva of a headliner. Whose heart will he win? More to the point, which woman will murder him first?
BAYOU PLAYHOUSE IS NOT AS FAR AS YOU THINK!
This new, already-acclaimed regional theater --- dedicated to only Louisiana works --- sits hanging over the water in historic old Lockport, a picturesque one hour drive from downtown New Orleans, a little more than half an hour from Houma or Thibodaux. Across from the Bayou Lafourche Folklife Museum and cattycorner to the Center for Traditional Louisiana Boatbuilding, yes, it’s true, during intermission from the theater’s outdoor deck, you can often spot alligators swimming in the bayou. For directions, go to http://www.bayouplayhouse.com/id25.html
MEET THE PLAYWRIGHTS!
Glen Pitre and Michelle Benoit will try to attend each performance the first two weekends, so if you can make it, please come say hello and chat with them. But make your reservations soon (www.bayouplayhouse.com )! Performances at the Bayou Playhouse often sell out.
May 15/09: Come and join us for a party hosted by the Bayou Lafourche Folklife and Heritage Museum! Our opening night parties include a chance to meet and greet the cast and crew. We hope to see you there!
The Bayou Playhouse is also showing some of the favorite films by Glen Pitre and Michelle Benoit each Sunday after the matinee performance of Floating Palace (separate admission: $5.) including some of the rarely seen, early Cajun language dramas (subtitles provided) as well as their most recent Gumbo Western starring Billy Zane, Oscar winner George Kennedy, and Emmy-winner Eric Braeden (Victor Newman from The Young and the Restless). See the complete list and schedule below.
May 15 - June 14, 2009, Friday and Saturday nights at 7:30, Sunday Matinees at 2:30
Featuring the films after Sunday shows. For tickets or information
call 1-888-99-BAYOU (22968) ext 1
or visit: www.bayouplayhouse.com
All films by Glen Pitre and Michelle Benoit
All showings are at Sunday, 5 PM at the Bayou Playhouse
Program 1: Sunday, May 17th, 2009 - La Fievre Jaune & Huit Piastres et Demie! In Cajun French with English subtitles. Two movies both shot on Bayou Lafourche: La Fievre Jaune about a family battling quarantine during a yellow fever epidemic and Huit Piastres et Demie! about the Shrimp War of 1938. “Moviegoers were caught from the first scene... Scenes on the bayou are beautiful and dramatic.”- New Orleans Times-Picayune. Unrated but family safe.
Program 2: Sunday, May 24th, 2009 - Belizaire the Cajun. Award-winning romantic adventure set in 1859 Louisiana. Belizaire Breaux (played by Armand Assante, in what many say is his best performance) must save a friend's life, win a woman's heart, outfox a crooked sheriff, stop marauding vigilantes, expose an evil villain, and rescue the inheritance of three orphaned children in a picture that blends suspense and humor. Called "a wonderful movie, two thumbs up" by Siskel and Ebert and credited with “the looniest hanging scene ever” by the Hollywood Reporeter. Rated PG-13.
Program 3: Sunday, May 31st, 2009 - Haunted Waters & Good For What Ails You The award-winning Haunted Waters, Fragile Lands follows immigrants to the Louisiana wetlands to show how history and ecology transform each other. Good For What Ails You goes along with respected "treaters" as they gather wild teas, brew home-made cough syrup, invoke the saints at their home altars, and most of all, heal the sick. Unrated but family safe.
Program 4: Sunday, June 7th, 2009 - The Scoundrel's Wife Rated R. As young men leave to fight World War II, German P.O.W.s arrive to work in the Louisiana sugarcane fields. Night after night, explosions light up the sky as enemy U-boats just offshore torpedo American merchant ships. Against the real dangers and explosive paranoia of this besieged home front, a fisherman’s beautiful widow (Academy Award-winner Tatum O’Neal) somehow find love. Grand Prize Winner, San Diego Film Festival. Filmed in Lafourche Parish, including scenes in the building that is now the Bayou Playhouse! Rated R.
Program 5: Sunday, June 14th, 2009 - The Man Who Came Back Inspired by the Thibodaux Massacre, when thousands of former slaves went on strike against plantation owners, the film stars Emmy Award-winner Eric Braeden, Billy Zane (Titanic), Sean Young (Blade Runner), Armand Assante (American Gangster), Academy Award-winner George Kennedy, Carol Alt (for whom the word "supermodel" was first coined), and --- out of retirement --- former heavyweight champ and star of Mandingo, Ken Norton. Rated R”for disturbing violence, sex, nudity, language, and racial slurs in a historical setting.