Michael Cartel‘s parents stopped in Pasadena, California long enough for him to be born while moving to a county fair with a traveling carnival. Cartel grew up and worked on the carnival until finishing high school when he was employed as a film actor. A graduate of California State University, Cartel began writing after returning from the military draft (U.S. Army) and combat in 1970. The same year he worked as a scriptwriter and later as a filmmaker. Cartel served as a reserve Los Angeles Police Department officer in North Hollywood and was editor and owner of a weekly newspaper, The Valley Vantage for ten years. After his media sale, Mike was honored to be a Los Angeles Unified School District teacher (and a Los Angeles Teaching Fellow). Today Cartel produces unwatchable documentaries while writing unpublished novels. He resides in a L.A. suberb with his wife, Mari Cartel and their two sons.
(Top L-R) Airplane in Bitter Heritage, 1978; Fight in Pets, 1974; Fight in Runaway Nightmare, 1979 (Next L-R) Shotgun blast in RN; Bottle hit in RN; Glass door crash in RN
Visit Mike Cartel’s Carnival for more
Bought new by my father in 1957, given to me by my mother in 1975 and finally restored by my father and myself in 2015.
RUNAWAY NIGHTMARE is featured in 17 (at the moment) IMDb Best Lists at See all related lists »
RUNAWAY NIGHTMARE HAS FINALLY ARRIVED!
RUNAWAY NIGHTMARE has been accepted as an official article in WIKIPEDIA as a ‘notable’ and ‘worthy’ subject for inclusion while ‘verifiable’ with ‘significant coverage about the subject in reliable sources.’
Check it out here: RUNAWAY NIGHTMARE in WIKIPEDIA
Runaway Nightmare actually had a shooting script, although it was often used as a sketch.
Q & A – EVERYTHING YOU WERE AFRAID TO ASK UNTIL NOW If you can’t corner me at a cinema appearance, this is the only place you can ask a serious question about this rediscovered masterpiece. I’m a carny, so you can’t hurt my feelings, but just keep it (somewhat) on the subject – Your pal Mike “I don’t pretend to know anything about art. I make cartoons. Later, the professors tell me what I did.” – Walt Disney
“Is Gone With The Wind art?” “No. Not at all. But it is entertainment.” – GWTW producer, David O. Selznick
Are there nude scenes in Runaway Nightmare?
The original 1982 VHS release had mismatched B & W video inserts of bare-breasted, torso-framed models spliced into the film. All this was done by a second party distributor without the knowledge of me. New DVD and Blu-ray (and 35mm positive print) formats from the 1981 negative began production in mid-2013, and do not include the counter-sexy nudie grotesques.
What was the original title of Runaway Nightmare?
Platinum Bombshell is the title name first registered with WGA/West in 1978 for the shooting script later known as Runaway Nightmare. All of the camera reports and movie slates during the first week of shooting bear the Platinum Bombshell title. The Platinum name was never intended to be the release title since it was too closely associated with actress Jean Harlow. The Runaway Nightmare name was invented by me during the second week of filming and refers more to the making of the film.
Where in the hell did you get the idea for this movie?
I want to give you an honest answer but it will take a while. I’ll have to get back to you on this.
Why do some of the cult girls disappear while different ones seem to take their place?
Some actresses in the two-and-a-half week principle photography phase simple didn’t show up after the first days and had to be replaced, using angles/shadow/tricks while new players merely entered and exited as was the nature of the bizarre commune sequence. As the movie dragged into endless week-ends, some of the actresses stayed to help me out, while others were hired in as extras who were often bumped into speaking parts. Seeska (Fate) actually saved the film by coming back after several months to complete her critical scenes. She also did her own dialogue looping in post. The important scene where Fate is getting my trust through romance as we look at the stars was filmed with Donna Paris wearing a blonde wig doubling for Seeska. There’s a lot more to this story, but you get the idea.
What was the “platinum-plutonium suitcase bomb” that Fate opened suppose to really be?
It was an upgraded (20 years advanced) ‘backpack nuke’ based on the 1964 U.S. Army’s Special Atomic Demolition Munition (SADM) with a M45 warhead (below) that was light and small enough to fit into a suitcase. And able to ignite when foolishly opened.
How many actual shooting days did it take to finish Runaway Nightmare?
Although the actual wire to wire finish was about three years, the number of days spent shooting the movie was only about 70, or a bit over two months. I’ll have to go over the camera reports for an exact accounting, but the movie was shot (after the nearly three-week principle photography phase with a fairly large crew) only on weekends where camera, equipment rentals were very cheap, with only one to four person crews. There were also weeks where I simply stood down.