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Not So Fantastique

March 23, 1986

I think Calendar missed the point about Cinefantastique magazine ("The Little Magazine That Could," by Pat H. Broeske, March 16).

To paraphrase the movie "Absence of Malice," the story may be factually accurate, but it's not "true."

Cinefantastique publisher/editor Fred Clarke is not a courageous journalist who's been unjustly boycotted by a clique of powerful film makers, nor are the film makers acting out of pique. There is a difference between an objective review and a malicious review. There is also a difference between genre news and the unauthorized revelation of the details of a work in progress. The "boycotting" film makers know the difference, Clarke does not.

Cinefantastique could illuminate important genre issues and record interesting behind-the-scenes history, but it's too biased to be effective in either area. Events, quotations and facts that do not fit Clarke's sensationalized preconceptions simply do not find their way into his magazine.

After many years of seeing myself and others savaged in the pages of Cinefantastique, I feel that the only way to deal with him is not to deal with him at all.

When there are so many who strive to use the written word and the arts to enrich the human spirit, why did the prestigious L.A. Times waste its space on Cinefantastique magazine?


Van Nuys

Danforth is a stop-motion effects animator who received kindly notices in a 1971 Cinefantastique issue for his dinosaur work in "When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth." The magazine also chronicled his problems in 1981 with "Caveman," when he departed the set over "creative differences."

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