Forrest J Ackerman passes away at 92

Forrest Ackerman, the world's #1 science fiction fan died today. He's probably best known for his magazine Famous Monsters of Filmland, although I first heard about him through Starlog when they talked about the making of the War of The Worlds. Ackerman was a huge collector of sci-fi memorabilia, and owned at least one of the spaceship models from the 1953 movie. Unfortunately, quite a bit of his collection was destroyed in a fire.

He recently said: "I aim at hitting 100 and becoming the George Burns of science fiction". His MySpace page is still going, however.

Here's part of a good profile of Forry from 2002 from the Daily Mirror (via the LA Times Weekly):
Born and raised in Hollywood, Forrie is the ultimate fan. He is still an eager 12-year-old boy trapped in a gangly, 86-year-old man's body. He delights in bad puns and very silly jokes. He points to a casket covered in embroidered pillows in the front of his living room. "That's my coffin table," he says with a wink. "Room for one more ... "
He is well-spoken and a master storyteller. He has an encyclopedic mind that holds data like a computer. He can rattle off obscure movie titles, forgotten movie stars, esoteric movie lore. His stories are what make his objects, much of which look like junk in an adolescent's bedroom, come alive.
There is Bela Lugosi's cape in the corner, from the 1932 stage performance of "Dracula" in San Francisco. And there, over the dining room doorway, are the seven great faces of horror cinema in life-size 3-D molds: Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Lon Chaney Jr., Tor Johnson, Glenn Strange, Vincent Price and Peter Lorre.
Where others display china, Forrie displays models of dinosaurs, monster heads and a skull holding a serving bowl. Where others might hang paintings, Ackerman hangs a wall-size comic strip of Vampirella, which he created in 1958.

One item I didn't realize was that Ackerman is responsible for "discovering" Ray Bradbury. I'm reading "October Country" by Bradbury right now.

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