2021 Rondo Awards

Rondo Awards administrator David Colton presided over the “19th Annual Rondo Hatton Classic Horror Awards Virtual Behind the Mask Stay Away From Me Don’t Touch Ceremony!” on May 3.

The Rondo Awards, named after Rondo Hatton, an obscure B-movie villain of the 1940s, honor the best in classic horror research, creativity and film preservation.

Colton says this year’s e-mail vote, conducted by the Classic Horror Film Board, a 25-year old online community, drew more than 6,000 ballots, a 27% increase from last year’s vote and the largest survey of classic horror fans and pros in history.

On Saturday, June 5 in Louisville, with Covid protocols in place, Colton will hold a two-years-in-one Rondo Awards Ceremony at WonderFest in Louisville.

Below is a photo of Hatton in the 1946 film, House Of Horrors, an inspiration for the distinctive bust given to winners.

BEST FILM OF 2020
Due to the pandemic, includes wide release, video-on-demand and streaming

  • THE INVISIBLE MAN, directed by Leigh Whannell (wide)

BEST TV PRESENTATION

  • THE MANDALORIAN, ‘The Rescue,’ 12.18.20, Disney+. Baby Yoda finds a master. ‘I’ll see you again. I promise.’

BEST DVD/BLU-RAY OF 2020

  • WAR OF THE WORLDS (1953; Criterion)

BEST DVD/BLU-RAY COLLECTION

  • FRIDAY THE 13TH DELUXE COLLECTION (Shout!) 12 movies and extras on 16 discs.

BEST RESTORATION OR UPGRADE

  • WAR OF THE WORLDS (1953; Criterion). Saucer wires gone; extensive visual and audio improvements throughout.

FAVORITE COMMENTATOR 

  • Sam Irvin (Frankenstein: The True Story)

BEST DVD EXTRAS

  • DAWN OF THE DEAD SPECIAL EDITON (1978; Second Sight). Four feature length documentaries; new interviews.

BEST INDEPENDENT FILM OF 2020

  • SEEDS, directed by Skip Shea. A pagan cult takes hold in New England. See trailer here

BEST SHORT FILM

  • THE THOUSAND AND ONE LIVES OF DR. MABUSE, directed by Ansel Faraj (17:23 mins). Third installment of modern take on Mabuse. See film here.

BEST DOCUMENTARY

  • CURSED FILMS, five-part Shudder documentary on mishaps and deaths surrounding Exorcist, Omen, Poltergeist, Crow, Twilight Zone.   See trailer here.

BOOK OF THE YEAR 

  • RAY HARRYHAUSEN, Titan of Cinema, by Vanessa Harryhausen (National Galleries of Scotland, softcover, 208 pages, $37.50). Stories behind models and effects in a planned exhibition.

BEST HORROR ART BOOKS 

  • ROD SERLING’S NIGHT GALLERY: THE ART OF DARKNESS, by Scott Skelton and Jim Benson (Creature Features, hardcover/softcover, 316 pages, $75/$95). Commentary and reproductions of every painting used in the series.

BEST MAGAZINE OF 2020

  • Scary Monsters

BEST ARTICLE

  • ‘Black Horror; History on the Big Screen,’ by Ernie Rockelman, HORRORHOUND #84. Tracking black horror milestones.

BEST INTERVIEW 

  • Bruce Campbell by Dr. Gangrene, Scary Presents Monster Memories (#116)

BEST COLUMN

  • Scene Queen, by Barbara Crampton, FANGORIA

BEST MAGAZINE COVER

[Tie]

  • Scary Monsters #118 (Glow in the Dark) by Scott Jackson
  • Classic Monsters of the Movies #21 by Daniel Horne

BEST WEBSITE OF 2020

BEST MULTI-MEDIA SITE

BEST VIRTUAL EVENTS OF 2020

  • BLOBFEST: Virtual events included Best Theatre Runouts of the past, Blob screenings, Miss Blobfest contest, online vendors.

FAVORITE HORROR HOSTS OF 2020

  • Svengoolie (Me-TV)

BEST GRAPHIC NOVELS OR COLLECTIONS

  • BRAM STOKER’S DRACULA STARRING BELA LUGOSI, by El Garing, Kerry Gammill, Richard Starkings, Robert Napton (Legendary Comics hardcover). Authorized by the Lugosi estate, he stars in a retelling of the classic tale.

WRITER OF THE YEAR 

  • Kelly Robinson

BEST ARTIST OF 2020

  • Mark Spears

BEST FAN ARTIST OF 2020 (The Linda Miller Award)

  • Noufaux – Adele Veness

MONSTER KID OF THE YEARRondo’s highest honor: Who did the most in 2020 to advance the cause of classic horror scholarship, film preservation or genre creativity?

  • From UCLA, the magic-making Scott MacQueen, who cajoled, pushed and insisted on Mystery Of The Wax Museum and this year’s Doctor X

SPECIAL RECOGNITION — for achievements that may have been overlooked or don’t fit into other categories

  • George Feltenstein, the longtime Warner Bros. executive who not only pushed Wax and Doctor X but Curse Of Frankenstein and a lifetime of DVDs and restorations. He left WB last month.
  • Monsters Holding B—–S, a very unique Instagram Site based on monsters and their victims. It not only features thousands of stills and paprodies, but also is a lab for young aspiring artists. And maybe the name will change someday!
  • Dick Klemensen for his work not only on Little Shoppe but his recent min-documentaries on ‘The Men Who Made Hammer.’

THE MONSTER KID HALL OF FAME (See full list of Hall of Famers here.)

  • Stacie Ponder, whose Final Girl blog was among the first to show women have a rich stake in horror and horror appreciation.
  • Derek M. Koch, whose Monster Kids Radio was one of the first podcasts to be devoted entirely to classic monsters, and the kids who love them.
  • Joe Kane – posthumously — an original Monster Times editor, who became The Phantom of the Movies…
  • Robert ‘Bobb’ Cotter
  • Svengoolie 

2 thoughts on “2021 Rondo Awards

  1. Congratulations to the winners. Thanks to syndication, I’ve started watching Svengoolie. A combination of bad jokes and knowledge.

    I’m not sure I would call Rondo Hatton obscure. But maybe II’m just a lover of the obscure… Although younger fans might not have heard of him, most of the Boomer and Gen X horror movie books I grew up with were full of opinions about his movies. Usually negative opinions about his acting — and those opinions might have turned people off before they saw the movies. And some people probably avoid his movies because they feel he was being exploited because of his disability.

    The prevailing opinion was that just when he was becoming a better actor. (Hedied tragically young because of acromegaly.) I wasn’t hugely impressed with The Brute Man, but I’d like to give it another try.

    From what I have read, Rondo Hatton had a great reputation among those who knew him. The recent biography “Rondo Hatton: Beauty Within the Brute” looks great!

    Why no one has made a biopic about Rondo Hatton is beyond me. There is a documentary called “Rondo and Bob” that looks cool.

  2. And now I have come to realize that the Rondo Award site and press release refer to Rondo Hatton as “obscure.” Well alrighty then.

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