[Exclusive Pics] Legendary Indie Director J.R. Bookwalter Returns Behind The Camera For SIDE EFFECTS MAY VARY – Trailer And Roadshow Info Revealed

Here in Northeast Ohio J.R. Bookwalter is the stuff of legend. Back in the late 80’s the area was abuzz as news broke that a teenager from Akron Ohio was making a zombie flick and rumor had it that Sam Raimi was involved in some way. The film was THE DEAD NEXT DOOR and as fate would have it – myself and two of my friends (what’s up Check and Heath) ended up as extras – playing zombies in a scene – if you look, really, really close at just the right moment – you’ll see me – that film secured Bookwalter a spot as indie horror royalty and launched him into a career that would take him across the country but around 2003 he stepped away from the director’s chair – until now.

After over 20 years he’s back behind the camera – and the blood is spewing again.

SIDE EFFECTS MAY VARY is set to be unleashed upon the world and today I’ve got the trailer, some exclusive pics, and the first round of screening info for all you gorehounds. First things first – let’s look at that trailer.

From the press materials:

“Side Effects May Vary,” tells the fictional story of a world gripped by a deadly pandemic, as science
denier Glenn Rollins turns to an experimental vaccine as treatment for a lingering sickness. Much to the surprise of his doctor, wife, and friends, the remedy immediately fixes what ails him. But Glenn will soon discover the only thing more fatal than the virus… is the cure.

Bookwalter returns to the director’s chair after a 23-year absence from the indie scene to direct, shoot, and edit “Side Effects May Vary,” which stars writer/producer James L. Edwards (“Bloodletting”), Tina Krause (“Witchouse 3: Demon Fire”), Floyd Ewing Jr. (“Skinned Alive”), Drew Fortier (“Her Name Was Christa”), Sasha Graham (“Addicted to Murder”), Tom Hoover (“Polymorph”), and a special appearance by legendary “scream queen” Brinke Stevens (“The Slumber Party Massacre”).

The grassroots tour kicks off January 27, 2024, on the East Coast, with stops in Pittsburgh, Harrisburg, and Philadelphia PA, Callicoon NY, Worcester MA, and Baltimore MD. Additional dates throughout Ohio are scheduled for February before heading west to Minneapolis, Kansas City, Wichita, New Orleans, Dallas, Austin, and other cities in March and April. The roadshow culminates with an international premiere at the Weekend of Fear festival in Erlangen, Germany on June 28-29, 2024.

Each stop on the theatrical roadshow will feature giveaways, a pop-up shop with collectible
merchandise plus the opportunity to purchase Blu-rays & DVDs of the filmmakers’ previous work, and a live post-show question-and-answer session with director Bookwalter, writer/star Edwards, and other special guests.

For a limited time, attendees will receive a free surgical mask featuring full-color
artwork from the movie’s poster, a collectible promotional giveaway with every ticket sold.

Sounds like a kick-ass time – thinking you should do whatever you need to do and make it to a screening!

J.R. was kind enough to send along some exclusive pics – enjoy!

One last thing – check out this killer poster art.

Dave Dreher
Co-Founder / Lead News Reporter at Gruesome Magazine
Dave is co-founder and lead news reporter for Gruesome. Dave has built his resume working for Diabolique Magazine, The Horror Channel, Horrornews.net, House of Horrors and Creature Corner. He has worked with Tom Savini on his official site since 1997 and is also co-host of the popular podcast Horror News Radio.