FALLS CITY -- The sequel to the film considered the king of all "B-movies" will begin filming in Falls City this week.
It's no joke.
"Manos: The Search for the Valley Lodge" starring Falls City resident Jackey Raye Jones is the sequel to "Manos: The Hands of Fate," which has developed a cult following as the worst movie ever made. Jones starred in the 1966 film as a 6-year-old with her father, Tom Neyman (The Master), who helped cast the first film, mostly from actors in the local theater group he directed.
Jones was contacted last June by Rupert Talbot Munch Sr., who was interested in directing a sequel. At first Munch asked Jones to be a consultant on the film, but once she expressed interest, her involvement expanded to a starring role.
Munch seems to have made it his personal mission to make "Manos: The Search for the Valley Lodge." Jones said he has adopted the persona of one of the Manos characters, "Torgo," and has been attending Comic-con Conventions in character.
Munch managed to find everyone still living who was involved in the first film. From there, he assembled a cast of people who starred in the original film and actors new to Manos to be part of the sequel.
This is all in spite of, or maybe because of, the film's bottom-of-the-barrel rating.
It's bad enough to have "B-movie" enthusiasts consider it a rite of passage to be able to sit through it, Jones said.
"It's known as the worse movie ever made," Jones said. "If you look it up, it's pretty undebatable."
The film has a family, including Jones' character, "Debbie," as the young daughter, heading to a vacation spot called "Valley Lodge." As in many horror films, they take a wrong turn and end up in a compound occupied by a polygamous cult that worships a god named "Manos." The family is assisted by the compound's caretaker Torgo, but when "The Master" comes back, things do not go well for Torgo or the family.
The Internet Movie Database user reviews for the original Manos collectively give the film 1.5 stars out of 10. Other sources put it in close competition with director Ed Wood's spectacular flop "Plan 9 From Outer Space."
Even Jones admits the film is pretty cringe-worthy and some of the acting is so awkward that it is actually painful to watch.
"A few of my friends actually sat through the whole thing," Jones said. "That really attests to how much they love me."
The sequel picks up with Debbie as an adult who recovers her memory of the vacation gone horribly, horribly wrong and goes back to explore the mystery of her past.
Two scenes of the sequel will be filmed in Falls City, using the Falls City Arts Center, where Jones is the executive director, as the set. The rest of the movie will be filmed in Texas, on the same ranch as the original. Jones said she is not sure when filming in Texas will begin.
But if there is one thing Jones has learned not to doubt, its Munch's determination.
"It going to be amazing," Jones said. "I don't know how he is going to get all these people to Texas, but he will."
Another crew will be in Falls City this week filming preparations, the shoot and an audition for two Manos roles for a documentary film about the making of the sequel.
Many may ask why anyone would want to make a sequel to "Manos: The Hands of Fate," but Jones is undaunted by the film's badness. It's actually a source of pride -- of a sort.
"Because it really is the worst," she said. "I wasn't just in a bad movie, I was in the worst movie. How cool is that?"
* Munch is looking for local actresses to fill two parts in an audition this weekend.
A casting call for two roles in the feature film, "Manos: The Search for the Valley Lodge," will take place at the Falls City Arts Center on Saturday, May 21, at noon.
Auditions will be held for nonunion girls ages 7 to 10 for the feature part of "young Debbie" and for girls ages 4 to 6 for the cameo role of "adult Debbie's daughter."
Those auditioning for the parts must be accompanied by an adult. The audition will be filmed by a documentary film crew and require the signing of a consent and release form.
For more information: email@example.com or call 503-559-6291.