"Mad Monster Party" is an incredible film by Rankin Bass, the creative team behind classic TV specials; "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer" and countless others. These specials spawned characters, who have earned cult status, such as "Hermie" a.k.a. "Herbie" (the toy making elf who really wants to be a Dentist, who performs oral surgery on the Abominable snow monster!), "Heat Miser and Snow Miser," and the Vincent Price voiced evil metallic Rabbit "Irontail" to name a few. "Mad Monster Party", was Rankin Bass' full length feature film released in 1968 starring ALL the classic movie monsters in twisted puppet form as designed by top "Mad" Magazine artist Jack Harris. The process was called "Animagic" and it revolutionized the stop motion medium , which influenced multiple generations of artists. The film stars Boris Karloff as himself, in puppet form announcing his retirement from the monster community and naming a successor to his horrific empire. He calls on all the monsters from around the world to attend a party at his castle, to meet the new successor. The film features songs by a skeleton band, a headbanging Mummy and lots of great monster cameos.
The film was a major inspiration to Tim Burton who created the now classic, Nightmare Before Christmas, and it's predecessor a stop-motion animated short called "Vincent". The Rankin/Bass team was also a source of inspiration to Corky Quackenbush's incredible "homage" shorts "Raging Rudolph" and "The Reinfather" (All of which were aired by "Mad TV"). Mad Monster Party's character designs, unusual movement and beautifully created horror puppets are a perfect cross over of Rankin Bass' infamous style and the monster world. The film was shown on TV annually, around Halloween and Thanksgiving in the 1970's on East Coast stations like New York's channel 5 (long before it was FOX) and New Jersey's WOR channel 9. (In fact, the giant TV on stage in the opening of Misfits shows, is always tuned to channel 5!) These were the very same stations that regularly ran "Creature Features" and "Chiller Theatre".
The "Mad Monster Party" releases are being done independently, so limited quantities will be available for a short time. The book, CD and home video are distributed by indie companies that are devoted fans (which means they have very little funds to do this at all!), but Horror Fiends should be able to find "Mad Monster Party" items in some major chains like Tower. If you can't find them you can order direct from the companies themselves. For direct ordering info on "Mad Monster Party" items click on the rare lobby card (below) from the film's initial 1968 release and learn about a special discount for Fiend Club members only!