Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Bill Barounis of Onar Films in hospital

Unfortunately, I received bad news yesterday from Miltos in Athens, Greece regarding our friend Bill Barounis of Onar Films.

Bill was hospitalised over a week ago for a condition I don't have much info about but according to Miltos it's stress related and serious. However, Miltos did actually speak to Bill over the phone yesterday and Bill said he would have to stay in hospital for a few more days but that he is all right. I don't wish to sound pessimistic but as I'm sure you know lots of people minimise their bad situation when they speak to someone else in order not to make them worry. I hope he's right, of course.

In contradiction to Miltos who is also located in Athens, I live far from Greece (at the other end of Europe) but even so it's no secret Bill burns his candle at both ends with his hectic life that includes a fulltime job, tons of work with Onar (and if anybody thinks it's "just" a cheap hobby they'd be in for a major surprise. Buying film rights and putting out DVDs is a very costly and time consuming affair), and not least Bill has a family to take care of.

So if you get to read this, Bill, it goes without saying thateveryone at Cinehound, Miltos, and myself, are crossing our fingers hoping you're gonna get well soon and have a complete recovery.

The photo is one of the rare ones of Bill that I've seen; It's from last year and Bill is standing outside an old closed down cinema on the isle of Crete. Here's what he said about it on Cinehound in August of last year:

Hey, I still can't forget my recent vacation on the MAGICAL island of Crete for dozens of reasons.
One of them is an unexpected discovery.

While passing from a mountain remote little village I discovered an abandoned CINEMA! I stopped there and wanted to cry.

I immediately asked around and managed to find the owner!

It was an old widow woman, now running a local small coffee house for old people.

I even took a small "interview" from her.
The village has 1000 (one thousand) inhabitants.
They opened the Cinema in 1970 and closed it down in 1987.
It had 250 seats and in some cases, when they screened some greek commercial film there were long queues and people were even standing in the theater!

Now, she uses it as a storehouse.

She looked so enthusiastic about it and I know she thought I was crazy for looking so excited about this.

Next time I go there I'll take pictures from the inside etc etc.


  1. Sorry to hear about Bill's stay in hospital.Hope he makes a quick recovery and everything goes smoothly for him after he comes out of hospital.Like you said it must be very stressful juggling all those tasks at once.

  2. Thanks for your comments and yeah I'm crossing my fingers too for the poor chap.

  3. HOLY SHIT! Keep me updated man! That sucks hardcore!

  4. I will indeed and yes it does. :-(

  5. Jack J,I read that Onar has almost run out of the Cellat dvds ? I haven't got my copy yet,i'll have to get it with a couple of other dvds of his that I don't have.Get well Bill.Cheers.

  6. Hey there,

    Yes, Cellat is listed as running quickly out of print. I don't know how many are left but if you wanted to make sure to get one you can order it via Bill's eBay store:

    Altho he's not there to send out the order the eBay thingy will remove your copy so you'll be sure to get one.

  7. Thanks,
    When all the Onar dvd releases eventually sell out,a lot of people will regret that they never bought these obscure gems.When that Mondo Macabro double bill went OOP,the next day a couple of ebay sellers were selling it for over a hundred dollars each.

  8. Jack J,Check the link below for MM tarkan/deathless devil dvd selling for big dollars :-

  9. You're right, Anonymous. And they'll regret it cos they won't be reprinted!

    And those prices are indeed insane!! When I tried to find Mondo Macabro's THE NUDE PRINCESS about 18 months ago it was £60 on Amazon, and I've just checked again and now it's £80!!! Used copies are £30!

  10. those two listings for the tarkan/d.devil were for used copies were $116 each.MM must be a very desirable dvd label for cult film enthusiasts.btw how's korkusuz turkish rambo doing sales wise ???

  11. $116 for new copies!! @_@

    Yeah, MM is a desirable label. Pete Tombs is a member over at Cinehound and last year when I mention the Amazon price for THE NUDE PRINCESS he's response was that maybe he ought to sell that box of N.P. DVDs that he had sitting at home. LOL.

    KORKUSUZ on the other hand isn't doing very well at all which is quite unfortunate! Ed Glaser who's behind the company wanted to put out other Turkish films if the first one sold alright but the last I heard from him (this was a few months back) was that KORKUSUZ hadn't even made even. So no more Turkish films from DarkMaze. :o(
    Glaser blamed illegal downloads.

  12. I was hoping that dark maze was going to put out a cuneyt arkin movie with english dialogue and with a new soundtrack.Damn those illegal downloaders !!! The only cuneyt arkin flick that's officially out there with english dialogue is ninja killers but arkin isn't even mentioned on the cover, even though he's the main star.You can still get this one cheap :-

  13. Yeah, it would have been nice if they'd put out some more stuff. A couple of night ago I was watching Arkin in a Kara Murat film that was shown on UK tv with subs and it was just soo intertaining and you're thinking why doesn't anybody put out these cool films on DVD???

    Btw, I'm sure you mean NINJA KILLERS is the only official DVD that's out there in English. There are several of this films that exist in English dubs on VHS. LIONMAN is one. My own version of NINJA KILLERS is actually a VHS (at least he's on the cover and his name is there too, altho I think he's called George Arkin, LOL).

    I don't know if you know this but the English dubbed version has a lot of stuff with Bolo Yeung in it, and there are some scenes set in HK at the beginning. All this isn't in the Turkish version (KARATECILER ISTANBULDA). I'm aware it IS a real HK/Turkish co-production so I'm not sure which one is the real version. Or maybe they're both equally "real". I have a (4th generation) German dubbed dupe of the Turkish print. It would be interesting to watch the Chinese print.

  14. I've got that ninja killers dvd with the honk kong collection title, dubbed in english.Haven't seen the turkish version(karaticilar istanbulda) or the hong kong version.Yes, bolo is in the version i've got.He's got an unusual way of fighting !! He looks away from his opponent while he's kicking and chopping like the guys with the funny socks over their heads with the cut out eyes.Cuneyt actually splits his pants in one scene in a warehouse wheN he attempts a flying kick.hahaha.With the english dub, they made the arkin character's sister his wife,which makes the story seem strange cos soon after his wife who's suppose to be his sister dies he's in love with the chinese woman.I like the fight scene at the end on the roof at the topkapi palace.Don't have lion man eng.dub but i've got kilic aslan(sword lion) off a turkish ex rental vhs tape from a turkish store here in australia which is better than the version on the recent fanatik dvd/vcd reissue from turkey on the fanatik label.

  15. Don't have that karamurat with the english subtitles.This was shown after the turkish pop cinema doco wasn't it ? SBS tv in australia use to show some good turkish films with eng. subs in the early to mid 80s but then they started showing boring art/house and political films which hardly anyone liked or watched.

  16. Hey again,

    Are you Tombei or ANOTHER reader in OZ? Anyway, cool that you have a copy off a Turkish LIONMAN tape and interesting that it's better than the new(ish) Turkish DVD.

    I've got that DVD and yes it's a quite scratched print. The dubbed tape looks much better. However, the two versions aren't the same as the dubbed version begins with a fight scene from an entirely different film (Ayman Kole told me the title but I forget) and the intro scene from the Turkish version has been cut out.

    My version of KARAMURAT, THE SULTAN'S WARRIOR was indeed taped with the Mondo Macabro Turkish Pop Cinema program. Actually, it was the people from MM who were behind the screening. I posted some scans from the film today.

    Yeah, SBS used to be cool. When I was there it was certainly heaps better than the commercial stations (this was before satellite tv was really introduced in Australia). I've still got some of the stuff I taped from there, not least the full HK version of ARMOUR OF GOD which you couldn't get on DVD or VHS at the time (other than the shorter international print). I know it's available now but I'll keep my old tape as it has an intro by Jackie Chan that he did especially for SBS. xD.

  17. yep this is tombei from australia,sbs use to be great for foreign cult movies in the 90s and early 2000s but since des mangan's cult movie show went off the air there hasn't been much in the way of cool movies mainly new (F)art house movies from around the world.Recently about 5 years ago there was a danish made documentary on the great russian sci-fi filmaker pavel klushantsev followed by his movie planet of storms/planeta burg in russian with eng subtitles.Channel 31 has got a program called the schlocky horror show hosted by a skeleton called nigel honeybone.This show's pretty good for public domain cult horroR and sci-fi flicks.
    the tape of lionman/kilic aslan that I have is a vhs taped copy off the original with no cover,even though it's second generation It's still much better than the recent dvd reissue on fanatik.

  18. Yeah, as I said that LIONMAN DVD isn't all that good. It's tragic that my dubbed tape is much better. Hmm, I haven't even seen that docu you mention! I know Andrew Leavold does a film show in Brisbane but I guess it's only local.