Hollie O'Connor

Premiere of Evil Dead remake gives ‘audience something real’

Demonic possession, dismemberment and over-the-top gore were the subjects of one of South By Southwest’s scariest film debuts, Evil Dead.

Evil Dead is about Mia, Eric, Olivia, David and Natalie—five friends who go to a cabin in the woods to help Mia kick her drug habit. They find a mysterious book in the cabin. It’s wrapped in barbed wire and someone has scribbled warnings all over the book not to read it out loud. Despite this, Eric clips off the barbed wire and does just that. He unwittingly unleashes a demon, who possesses Mia.

The movie that premiered March 9 is actually a reboot of the 1981 cult classic of the same name. Bruce Campbell, Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert, who were involved in the original, produced the reboot.

Pixar short features umbrella love, premieres at SXSW film festival

An umbrella on a dangerous adventure to reunite with the love of his life is the subject of Pixar’s latest short animated film “The Blue Umbrella,” which debuted at South by Southwest last week. 

In the film, which will appear before Pixar’s Monsters University, a blue umbrella in a sea of black ones is happily keeping his owner dry from the rain. He then notices a beautiful red umbrella next to him. The red umbrella notices him and gives him a shy meaningful glance back, but before they know it, their owners are headed in different directions. 

Sand ceremony symbolizes destruction, renewal


After four days of hard work and painstaking attention to detail, Tibetan Monks on Texas State’s campus finished colorful artwork made entirely of sand that spanned about 2 feet in diameter. 

Then on Friday, they destroyed it. 

The artwork, a traditional Buddhist mandala, is a symbol of the universe. The monks are from Drepung Loseling Monastery near Atlanta, Ga. and created the mandala as part of this year’s Common Experience program. Lobsang Dhondup, one of the visiting monks, explained the ceremonial destruction of the symbol to a crowd of more than 100 people in the LBJ Student Center.

Alumnus hits New York Times Best Seller List

Texas State alumnus Ross Bolen’s account of wild, rowdy fraternity life has made the New York Times Best Seller List. 

“Total Frat Move” comes in at spot No. 10 on the list of Nonfiction Hardcover Best Sellers for Feb. 3. The book is just two spots below a Pulitzer Prize-winning author’s biography of Thomas Jefferson and one spot above the memoir of Stanley McChrystal, retired United States army general.

It also came in No. 8 on the list of E-Book Nonfiction Best Sellers. 

Bobcat alumnus makes launch into spotlight career

Danny Lutman got his first big break with the help of a can of soda and an exercise ball.

The audition was in 2007 for a Pepsi commercial, which started out ordinary enough. The people casting the commercial handed Lutman a can of Pepsi and asked him to act like he was “really enjoying it,” but the situation took a bizarre turn.

“They throw me this exercise ball and are like, ‘ride it,’ and I said ‘okay,’ so I take the ball and I do goofy things with it and make these ridiculous facial expressions,” Lutman said. “As absurd as it sounds, that’s only one-tenth of how absurd it actually was.”

Q&A: Ross Bolen

Monetizing outrageous anecdotes of fraternity life in a classy blue book. TFM. The Total Frat Move book, authored by Texas State alumnus Ross Bolen, is the newest product born out of the funny and often offensive content of TotalFratMove.com. The website is one where users can submit their own “total frat moves” about topics such as patriotism, drinking, beautiful women and fraternity life in general.

The book follows protagonist Townes Prescott, a freshman who rushes a fraternity and finds it to be everything he hoped for and more. In the first chapter alone, he winds up at a wild “paint your toga” party, gets incredibly drunk, snorts some cocaine, gets laid and avoids the cops.

Bolen spoke to The Star about the book, which hits stores Tuesday.

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