For anyone who knows me (or even just knows me on Facebook), I have a intervention-level obsession with two things...Lord of the Rings (but that's another story) and Living Dead Dolls! I have been collecting these little wonders of gore and art since I was 15 years old, my first dolls being Killbaby and Jubilee. I'm 23 now and can barely see my bedroom walls because I have dolls stacked on top of each other! These dolls started out as just handmade craft toys sold at horror conventions and have now become the IT toy for horror and toy collectors alike. With 15 years and hundreds (yes, hundreds!) of dolls under their belts, the team of Ed Long and Damien Glonek have put in a hell of a lot of time and effort into getting Living Dead Dolls to where they are today and graciously gave me and Chriss Wright, my best friend and camera woman for the day, a few minutes of their time to ask a few questions.
I'm not even going to lie...I was SCARED AS HELL to do this interview, being it was my first ever face-to-face one! I have looked up to Ed and Damien since I was 15. I have even tried to paint stuffed animals like roadkill and sold them around high school because of them (had a three legged dog called tripod...)! So when Damien said yes to the interview about 2 weeks before, I freaked out right there at my computer!
Yesterday, I kept having to walk laps around the convention to calm my nerves. Yes, I met them last year...but this is different! This was something I could make myself look like an idiot to the two men who's dolls surround me everyday! But once Chriss and I went over to their booth, It became very clear I had nothing to be afraid of. Why? Because these two guys aren't just wonderful artists who just so happen to make my favorite thing in the whole goddamn world, but are both just awesome people! Damien was so gracious and understanding of our strange fangirling (and even saved a Samhain doll for me!) And Ed...well we ending up at the bar with Ed, and his beautiful wife Becky, for an hour just chatting away and having a good time! It was literally a dream come true, having a beer with one of your favorite artists. So I just want to say a HUGE thank you to Ed and Damien for making my first ever face-to-face interview one that I, and definitely Chriss, will NEVER forget!
And now on to the interview already! The video was shot on my cellphone so it's a little hard to hear, but I recorded full audio of it all and that will be played on Sunday's episode of Dollar Bin Horror Radio. Right now though, I transcribed the entire interview below so you can read along. The interview is in two parts because my phone decided to cut off half way threw, but the full interview is up and I really hope everyone enjoys it! It was a dream come true to do it and I again have to thank Ed and Damien for sparing some of their time at a busy convention!
DBH: So how did you guys get started making Living Dead Dolls?
Ed: We hang out and watch horror movies and I guess we…I don’t know I guess we accidentally started making them.
Damien: I was like really into model kits at the time, like building resin model kits from garage kits, horror stuff and stuff like that. His (Ed’s) mom had blank dolls and we were just like making creepy little dolls that were just more or less looked at as like just another model kit, you know?
DBH: With 26 series of dolls, you guys have a LOT of dolls. How do you keep coming up with new ideas and where do you even get inspiration for the dolls?
Damien: Everything! Music, movies, just everything out there, you know? There’s always something that jogs an idea, you see something, you know? It’s getting harder and harder the more we’ve done to try and stay fresh and original but apparently series 26 was a big hit so I guess we’re still doing something right.
DBH: That actually ties into the next question, 2011 was your 13th anniversary. How far do you see Living Dead Dolls going and do you have any special plans for maybe a 15th or even 20th anniversary?
Ed: Yeah we’re Barbie. I mean at this point I think we’re gonna be around for the next 50 years cause we’re the alt[ernative] doll for the cool kid.
DBH: I sure hope so! These two questions are from another one of your fans, Susan Zeilder, are there any dolls that you wanted to make but were turned down and how much artistic freedom do you have?
Damien: Like a licensed doll or?
DBH: Any doll. Is there a doll you really wanted to do but just couldn’t for some reason?
Ed: There’s a few
Damien: Yeah I mean you know I would like to do The Exorcist , it’s just stuff like that it’s just licensing issues.
Ed: Children shouldn’t play with dead things would be good
Damien: It’s just you never know, you know? Time will tell, nothings ever out of the realm of possibility but…
DBH: Now this is a hard question. I know for me it’s definitely Eggzorcist, what is your favorite doll if you…like could you pick one or a favorite series?
Ed: It’s like asking us to pick what are favorite child is. It’s not fair. I mean I have a couple dolls that really mean the world to me, Rain being one. It’s a tribute to my mom. But other than that I love them all so much. Like when you do something, and I’m sure Damien will back me up on this, when you really work on something and you see it and it happens, it’s awesome. Ideas are the best things going and sometimes we have so good ones. I can say there are some ones we don’t like, you know? Something I’d love to take back.
DBH: This is another one from Susan, With “The Conjuring” that just came out with the possessed doll, do you think that it’s even possible? Do you believe an object could be possessed?
Damien: Sure! Definitely! I’m always a sucker to try to find like, some haunted something
DBH: Just food for thought, the person recording this video, Chriss, says she has a ghost in her house that looks like [your doll] Cracked Jack. She bought Cracked Jack to try to get him to come out.
Damien: That’s awesome!
Ed: I think you just brought him home! Cause like, to be honest, I think 80% of what we put out there is possessed.
DBH: This last question is just a personal question for me. You guys have a Tiffany and Chucky set coming out in 2014, February…Will there be a Glen?
Damien: Probably not
DHB: Cause I’ve been looking for a Glen or Glenda doll, well I have Glen but
Damien: You’d probably have a better chance at Glen or Glenda from Ed Wood!
DBH: Well thank you so much for your time!
Damien: Yeah, thank you!