National News

October 21, 2013

‘Walking Dead’ inspires new convention in Atlanta

ATLANTA — Cable TV’s “The Walking Dead” has inspired a new convention, a podcast, and a one-man play.

The podcast and Atlanta-based convention are the creations of Eric Nordhoff and James Frazier, also known as the “Walker Stalkers” because of a road trip they made last fall from Nashville, Tenn., to Georgia to see the AMC show being filmed.

The convention, Walker Stalker Con, is expected to draw 10,000 or more participants when it’s held early next month, Nordhoff said.

“The Walking Dead” characters battle zombies known as “walkers” in the streets of downtown Atlanta and in forests, small towns and a prison south of the city.

The convention will feature appearances by some of the show’s actors, including Norman Reedus, who slays walkers with a crossbow as Daryl Dixon; Andrew Lincoln, who plays Sheriff Rick Grimes, and Lauren Cohan, also known as Maggie Greene on the show.

The series returned for its fourth season this month with its biggest audience ever. The 16.1 million people who watched the Oct. 13 series premier shattered the show’s previous record of 12.4 million, the Nielsen company said.

Nordhoff and Frazier are neighbors in suburban Nashville, and had gathered every Sunday in Frazier’s basement to watch “The Walking Dead.”  They’d heard talk of a big day of filming in Senoia, the town south of Atlanta where much of the show is produced, so they got up before sunrise and made the trip to Georgia.

“It was our dream day,” recalls Nordhoff, 42.

“We got to meet I think eight members of the cast,” he recalls. “Somebody called us the ‘Walker Stalkers’ when we were there.”

The two decided to develop a podcast that has become popular with fans of the show. The podcast features discussions of many aspects of the show’s storyline and interviews with people behind the scenes, such as special effects makeup expert and show producer Greg Nicotero.

In April, Nordhoff and Frazier came up with the idea of holding the convention, which will take place Nov. 1-3.

The show has also inspired one of its actors to stage a one-man play.

Robert “IronE” Singleton, who played “T-Dog” in the first three seasons of the show, will portray 18 characters in “Blindsided by the Walking Dead,” which tells the story of how he grew up in the Perry Homes housing project during Atlanta’s crack cocaine epidemic before he found work as an actor.

A key scene of “The Walking Dead” was filmed on a downtown Atlanta rooftop just a few miles from the project, where violence was ever-present during Singleton’s childhood and teenage years.

“Blindsided by the Walking Dead” is a work of drama, comedy, dance, spoken word and rap. Its characters include a thug, a crack addict, Richard III from Shakespeare, God and Singleton’s deceased mother.

“I think it could inspire people and save lives,” said the 38-year-old actor, who also will take part in a panel discussion during the convention.

“It’s about embracing truth and love through everything you do.”

———

Online:

Walker Stalker Con http://www.walkerstalkercon.com/

 

1
Text Only
National News
  • 10 Things to Know for Monday

    Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Monday:

    April 20, 2014

  • Ukraine, Russia trade blame for shootout in east

    Within hours of an Easter morning shootout at a checkpoint manned by pro-Russia insurgents in eastern Ukraine, Russia’s Foreign Ministry issued a statement blaming militant Ukrainian nationalists and Russian state television stations aired pictures of supposed proof of their involvement in the attack that left at least three people dead.

    April 20, 2014

  • In West Bank, teen offenders face different fates

    The boys were both 15, with the crackly voices and awkward peach fuzz of adolescence. They lived just a few minutes away from one another in the West Bank. And both were accused of throwing stones at vehicles, one day after the other.

    April 20, 2014

  • Study: Fuels from corn waste not better than gas

    Biofuels made from the leftovers of harvested corn plants are worse than gasoline for global warming in the short term, a study shows, challenging the Obama administration’s conclusions that they are a much cleaner oil alternative and will help combat climate change.

    April 20, 2014

  • Fracking foes cringe as unions back drilling boom

    After early complaints that out-of-state firms got the most jobs, some local construction trade workers and union members in Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia say they’re now benefiting in a big way from the Marcellus and Utica Shale oil and gas boom.

    April 20, 2014

  • In Colorado, a pot holiday tries to go mainstream

    Once the province of activists and stoners, the traditional pot holiday of April 20 has gone mainstream in the first state in the nation to legalize recreational marijuana.

    April 20, 2014

  • ‘Capt. America’ tops box office for third week

    Captain America continues to vanquish box office foes, triumphing in ticket sales for the third consecutive week and dominating over megastar Johnny Depp’s new movie.

    April 20, 2014

  • Probe could complicate Rick Perry’s prospects

    Texas Gov. Rick Perry has spent a record 14 years in office vanquishing nearly all who dared confront him: political rivals, moms against mandatory vaccines for sixth graders, a coyote in the wrong place at the wrong time.

    April 20, 2014

  • NASA’s space station Robonaut finally getting legs

    Robonaut, the first out-of-this-world humanoid, is finally getting its space legs.

    April 19, 2014

  • Documents detail another delayed GM recall

    Government documents show that General Motors waited years to recall nearly 335,000 Saturn Ions for power steering failures despite getting thousands of consumer complaints and warranty repair claims.

    April 19, 2014