Jean Rollin is one of long unsung heroes of European art cinema. His career, which spanned five decades from the late '60s through the early '00s, saw him tackling horror, sexuality, and violence from a unique point of view that often placed teh focus squarely on women. As such, it seems entirely appropriate, and in fact overdue, that superstar film programmer Kier-La Janisse and Canadian film scholar Paul Corupe's micro publishing imprint Spectacular Optical are releasing a brand new book of essays about Rollin by women this summer.
The book, Lost Girls: The Phantasmagorical Cinema of Jean Rollin, is edited by Diabolique Magazine editor Samm Deighan is currently up for pre-order on IndieGoGo with a wealth of perks available for early buyers. The book is to feature essays from some of film criticism's best known and most well-respected experts on genre cinema including Deighan's Diabolique colleague Kat Ellinger, and a number of other excellent authors and essayits including Alexandra Heller-Nicholas, Alison Nastasi, Heather Drain, Kier-La Janisse, and many others.
Over the last twenty or so years, Rollin gained the recognition that he deserved thanks in large part to not only to the re-emergence of his films in programs around the world, but also a new generation of scholarly writing on the subject, centrally the indespensible Immoral Tales by Cathal Tohill and Pete Tombs. However, as is the case across the film writing world, the contributions of women to the canon of scholarly work on Rollin is sparse, and so a project like this is more than exciting, it's a necessary step in a very welcome direction and worthy of all the support we can give.
Follow this link to pre-order your copy of Lost Girls, and maybe grab a cool tshirt while you're at it.
Check out more details below:
Canadian micro-publisher Spectacular Optical has just launched pre-sales for its newest book focused on the career of French fantasy and horror filmmaker Jean Rollin, LOST GIRLS: THE PHANTASMAGORICAL CINEMA OF JEAN ROLLIN, penned by all women critics, scholars and film historians.
With a campaign running on Indiegogo through May 17th at https://www.igg.me/at/lostgirlsbook, Spectacular Optical is offering genre fans an early opportunity to pick up this limited-edition book, as well as a slew of additional perks such as Blu-Rays, soundtracks, books, festival passes, a Rollin Mystery Boardgame designed by cover artist Jessica Seamans (limited to 100 copies!), and – most exciting of all - the ‘Tour de sang’: an immersive tour through eight Rollin film locations in the French countryside!
This collection of essays covers the wide range of Rollin’s career from 1968’s LE VIOL DU VAMPIRE through his 2010 swansong, LE MASQUE DE LA MÉDUSE, touching upon his horror, fantasy, crime and sex films—including many lesser seen titles. The book closely examines Rollin’s core themes: his focus on overwhelmingly female protagonists, his use of horror genre and exploitation tropes, his reinterpretations of the fairy tale and fantastique, the influence of crime serials, Gothic literature and the occult, as well as much more.
Curated and edited by Samm Deighan (DIABOLIQUE), contributors to LOST GIRLS include some of the most important critical voices to emerge over the last decade of genre journalism: Alexandra Heller-Nicholas (SENSES OF CINEMA), Kat Ellinger (DIABOLIQUE), Virginie Selavy (ELECTRIC SHEEP), Alison Nastasi (SATANIC PANIC: POP-CULTURAL PARANOIA IN THE 1980s), Marcelline Block (ART DECADES), Rebecca Booth (DIABOLIQUE), Michelle Alexander (CINEMADROME), Lisa Cunningham (THE LAUGHING DEAD: THE HORROR-COMEDY FILM FROM BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN TO ZOMBIELAND), Heather Drain (DANGEROUS MINDS), Erin Miskell (THAT’S NOT CURRENT), Kier-La Janisse (HOUSE OF PSYCHOTIC WOMEN), Gianna D’Emilio (DIABOLIQUE) and veteran genre journalist Marcelle Perks (SHIVER, EYEBALL).
The cover art and chapter headings (as well as the Rollin Mystery Boardgame!) are being created by illustrator Jessica Seamans, known for her work with Landland and posters for MONDO. The artwork features Rollin regulars the Castel Twins among a combination of imagery from his films Fascination and La Rose de Fer:
LOST GIRLS will be a beautiful perfect-bound book, roughly 400 pages and heavily illustrated throughout with stills, posters, ads and other visual ephemera related to Rollin's films. A successful campaign will ensure that the book can be printed in full colour, as Rollin’s iconic imagery so rightly deserves.
LOST GIRLS is the third book in Spectacular Optical’s ongoing series of limited run film and pop culture books, which includes KID POWER! (2014) and SATANIC PANIC: POP CULTURAL PARANOIA IN THE 1980s (2015) and will precede the previously announced YULETIDE TERROR: CHRISTMAS HORROR IN FILM AND TELEVISION, which will be released in fall of 2017. Supporting partner organizations on the campaign include Kino Lorber, Finders Keepers, Headpress, Shudder, The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies London, Fantastic Fest (Austin), Monster Fest (Melbourne) and The Fantasia International Film Festival (Montreal), where the book aims to launch in July.
About Spectacular Optical:
Owned and operated by film writer and programmer Kier-La Janisse (HOUSE OF PSYCHOTIC WOMEN) with managing editor Paul Corupe (Canuxploitation.com), Spectacular Optical is a Canadian indie press that specializes in film and pop culture books, in addition to featuring articles, essays and interviews on the Spectacular Optical website on a year-round basis. www.spectacularoptical.ca