Flashback Weekend Chicago Horror Convention

Flashback Weekend

Chicago Horror Con

August 2-4, 2024

Hyatt Regency O'Hare Chicago
Rosemont, IL


Nick Castle

John Carroll Lynch

Naomi Grossman

Stuart Gordon

Jeffrey Combs

Dean Cundey

Nancy Loomis

Charles Cyphers

Will Sandin

Dick Warlock

Tommy Lee Wallace

Tom Atkins

Stacey Nelkin

Alan Howarth

Danielle Harris

Scout Taylor-Compton

Kristina Klebe

George Wilbur

Erik Preston

Don Shanks

Tamara Glynn

William Forsythe

Jeffrey Kramer

Pat Healy

Jeff Daniel Phillips

Carolyn Purdy-Gordon

Richard Band

Barbara Magnolfi

John Russo


Sean ClarkIn 2003 Sean was one of three principles that put on the Halloween Returns to Haddonfield 25th Anniversary Convention in Pasadena, California. Soon after he began working on the documentary Halloween: 25 Years of Terror, which he was a co-creator and co-writer of. The documentary was released on DVD in July of 2006 from Anchor Bay Entertainment. He also hosted the Halloween 30th Anniversary Convention in 2008 called 30 Years Of Terror.

Sean created an article called Horror’s Hallowed Grounds featured in each issue of Horror Hound Magazine that takes a look at the filming locations of famous horror and cult films. The article was an immediate success and a television version of Horror’s Hallowed Grounds was soon in the works. The first two episodes are available as a bonus features on the Halloween 25 Years of Terror and Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy DVDs. 


Sal LizardSince 2003, Sal has appeared in over three dozen movies, which included playing three different zombies as well as ???Dr. Scott Shannon??? in Richard Griffin???s FEEDING THE MASSES (2004). He has also appeared in CREATURE FROM THE HILLBILLY LAGOON (2005), ABE'S TOMB (2007), I AM LEGEND (2007), HILLBILLY BOB: ZOMBIE (2009), THE BOX (2009) and HOOKED (2011) to name but a few. Last year, he produced the haunted house film, NEXT DOOR (2010), with Lynn Lowry, and will be producing "THE LAST EXIT" and "LONGWOOD" in 2012. Several years ago, while living in Southern Ohio, Sal created ???Abner Zombie: the Standup Comedy Zombie... and part time gravedigger??? while working at a haunted Halloween attraction; telling jokes to visitors of the Gates of Terror. He is also a professional Santa who typically appears as "the Vampire Santa" for photo ops on Saturday for the fans.

He had his first book published, ???Being Santa Claus??? in November 2012 to rave reviews. His book tour lead him to many appearances around the country during the holiday season. He also has a weekly internet radio show, ???The Wacky World of Sal Lizard???, every Wednesday night.




SVENGOOLIE will appear Saturday and Sunday for twice the fun so make this a weekend getaway for your whole family!

Saturday, August 8

  • 2:00PM ??? 4:00PM - Svengoolie autographs & photos
  • 4:15PM ??? 5:00PM - Svengoolie hosts the Sinister Visions Costume Contest

Sunday, August 9

  • 1:00PM ??? 3:00PM ??? MONSTER FAMILY FUN DAY Svengoolie live on stage ???MAD MONSTER PARTY??? (1967) The Rankin Bass stop motion classic starring Boris Karloff Audience participation & surprises.

Every year at Flashback Weekend we look forward to the annual visit from Chicago Television Legend "SVENGOOLIE". Rich Koz has portrayed the popular character since 1979, and is now seen nationally Saturday nights on the Me-TV network, as well as on Chicago’s WCIU, "The U!" Also featured are "Doug Graves" the laid back musical sidekick, Tombstone the talking skull, and Kerwyn the prehistoric rubber chicken , along with Sven’s popular musical numbers and commercial parodies wrapped around films from the classic Universal Studios library.

Svengoolie/Rich?? has received 8 regional Emmy Awards, and was inducted into the prestigious Chicago Television Academy's 2004 "Silver Circle" for outstanding contributions to Chicago television. He has won the national Rondo Award as ‘favorite horror host’ numerous times, and the Illinois legislature?? has officially namedOctober 31??(Halloween), 2014, as “Svengoolie/Rich Koz Day” in the state- and his original TV coffin will be on display permanently in Chicago’s Museum of Broadcast Communications.

Svengoolie will be signing autographs, posing for photos, and will take to the Flashback Stage for a Q & A and to MC the costume contest on Saturday. Get your costumes ready!


J. Anthony KosarJ. ANTHONY KOSAR

Syfy's Face Off: Season 4 Champion

FACE OFF??Season 4 Champion J. Anthony Kosar specializes in Fine Art, Illustration, Sculpture, and Special Effects through his company Kosart Effects Studios, LLC. On??FACE OFF, the biggest competition for Make-Up FX on the Syfy Channel, Kosar won 6 of 11 Spotlight Challenges, setting the record of most consecutive wins in a row and most wins by a single contestant on a single season. Of his Spotlight wins, he won the DC Superhero challenge where his winning character "The Infernal Core" appeared in the DC comicJUSTICE LEAGUE DARK #16, and also won the??DEFIANCE??challenge where he shadowed the FX make-up crew on set in Toronto, Canada. In 2007, he interned at legendary Stan Winston Studio creating effects for??INDIANA JONES 4??and James Cameron's??AVATAR. Kosar designs and sculpts Halloween masks, creates special effects for theater, film, and commercials, and teaches the Art of FX through his studio in Westmont, IL. Besides FX, Kosar designs and sculpts prototypes for toys, collectibles and medical anatomical models, illustrates for novels and comic books, curates art gallery exhibitions, and creates his own fine art paintings and sculptures. His paintings have appeared in??Watercolor Artist Magazine??and??SPLASH: Best of Watercolor, and his sculptures have appeared in??SPECTRUM: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art. Kosar was Valedictorian of the class of 2008 at the American Academy of Art in Chicago, IL earning his BFA in Illustration. Visit Kosar's Website: www.kosarteffects.com



Flashback Weekend Master of Ceremonies

Daily Herald film critic Dann Gire has been a member of the Flashback Weekend cult since the very beginning. He serves as the president and founding director of the Chicago Film Critics Association, and has won the prestigious Peter Lisagor Award for Arts Criticism six times. (His mentor/rival Roger Ebert has won it only four times.) Gire has also been an adjunct faculty member in William Rainey Harper College’s English and Journalism departments since 1984, teaching courses in drama, film & literature, journalism, short stories & novels, mass communications and feature writing. He put both Zack Snyder's remake of "Dawn of the Dead" and the family feature "The Incredibles" on his top 10 list of best movies of 2004.



Flashback Weekend Co-Host

Talk Show Host/Film Critic for WGN Radio. Nick has been reviewing movies for over 23 years on WGN Radio in Chicago. He also hosts a highly-rated weekend talk show on 720am that covers everything pop culture and news related. He has also written, acted in and directed over thrity plays in and around the Chicago area including the horror classics "Among the Dead" (in which he played an insane?redneck who killed zombies) and "Operation Infiltration: An Experiment in Terror" (which was a salute to great genre films like Romero's "The Crazies" and Philip Kaufman's "Invasion of the Body Snatchers"). He has LOVED horror films for his entire life and is incredibly excited to be co-hosting the Flashback Convention for yet another exciting year.

Top Five Horror Movies of All Time:

  1. John Carpenter's HALLOWEEN
  2. George A. Romero's DAWN OF THE DEAD
  3. Dario Argento's SUSPIRIA
  4. Don Coscarelli's PHANTASM

(but, of course, this list changes constantly depending on his mood).



Flashback Weekend Co-Host

Steve Prokopy is the Chicago Editor for Ain't It Cool News (www.aintitcool.com), where he has contributed film reviews and filmmaker and actor interviews under the name "Capone" since 1997. In 2005, he also joined the staff of the Chicago-based media outlet GapersBlock.com as the site's Friday film critic with his Steve@theMovies column. Steve has been a horror fanatic since he was a youngster, and was even suspended from high school for a day after a presentation he gave his classmates on his hero, make-up master Tom Savini. He has been a Flashback Weekend co-host since it began in 2002 and is thrilled to be back again this year.

Top Five Horror Movies:

  1. Sam Raimi's THE EVIL DEAD
  2. George A Romero's DAWN OF THE DEAD
  3. John Carpenter's THE THING
  5. Herschell Gordon Lewis' BLOOD FEAST



Flashback Weekend Co-Host

Horror Journalist and Daily Dead contributor Heather Wixson can pinpoint where her love of the horror genre started exactly: At age three she saw An American Werewolf in London in the theater and was immediately hooked.  Heather currently serves as a one of the judges for the prestigious Shriekfest International Horror/Sci-Fi Film Festival. Heather also established her own independent production company in 2009 called Final Girl Films and is currently producing several independent genre films.  A Chicago native, Heather is beyond thrilled to be co-hosting Flashback Weekend this year.

Top Five Horror Movies:

  1. Tom Holland's Fright Night
  2. Chuck Russell's A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors
  3. Fred Walton's April Fool's Day
  4. Andrew Kuehn's Terror In the Aisles
  5. Scott Glosserman's Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon




John is a stage actor who trains at The Artistic Home in Chicago and co-stars in The Mole Man of Belmont Avenue with Mike Bradecich, which he also co-wrote and co-directed.  He has co-produced two other feature films (The Art of Pain and Squeal). As an actor, John has fought ninjas and zombies as a lead in the feature film The Art of Pain, been killed by a Pigman in the feature film Squeal, performed the motion capture movement for the video games Stubbs the Zombie and BioShock and had very small roles in very small commercials that only his mother seems to have seen.

John is also the founder and director of Zombie Army Productions, a production company that produces Chicago’s largest haunted house (Statesville Haunted Prison & City of the Dead).



Ron Fitzgerald (AKA Master Ron Fitzgerald) is an award-winning Actor, Gothic Illusionist and Host for dark, sticky fun! Fitzgerald has appeared as an actor in numerous feature films and has recently portrayed Dracula in "Dracula's Orgy of the Damned". Ron has just completed his own film project, which he co-wrote and co-produced, with director Vincent Bilancio, titled "Dark Realm" which combines his acting abilities with his Gothic illusion show.

Master Ron Fitzgerald will be performing live on stage at Flashback Weekend Saturday August 8, 2015 in the late night Spookshow featuring Babes, Blood, Burlesque, and the Baddest movie of all time ???MANOS: THE HANDS OF FATE???.



Chad Savage is a dark artist/designer and the owner of Sinister Visions inc., a dark visual design company that caters to the horror, Halloween & haunted attraction industries. Besides providing branding, art and websites for hundreds of haunted houses around the world, he manages a series of genre websites including ZombiePinups.com, PumpkinCult.com and the DarkChicago.com series of sites, and is the Art & Marketing Director for Flashback Weekend and The Zombie Army.

Sinister Visions inc. is an official sponsor of Flashback Weekend, and will host/sponsor the Costume Contest and Zombie Pinups Beauty Pageant on Saturday - details HERE!

To learn more about Chad Savage and his work, visit SinisterVisions.com and ChadSavage.com.



Jim Sorfleet is the owner of SnS-Photo located in Chicago. Jim has been creating visually stimulating images professionally for over five years and his portrayals of the eerie and macabre has been described as disturbingly titillating.

His work has been featured in numerous gallery shows including those at Horrorbles in Berwyn and the 1901 Gallery in Chicago. He is an internationally published artist whose magazine credits include features and covers of Gothic Noir Magazine, Dark Parlour- Magazine and others. His work has graced the covers of fine novels such as Electric Angel by Author Sue Dent, Indiana Horror 2012 by James Ward Kirk and Train Gone Sorry by Melissa Skyer.

SnSPhoto (Jim Sorfleet) is the official event photographer for Flashback Weekend.
To find out more about Jim and SnS-Photo, visit his website at www.sns-photo.com.


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Celebrity guests subject to change without notice
due to unforseeable filming/scheduling conflicts.

John Michael Graham, Charles Band and Matthew Walker unable to attend.