For the majority of the United States, spring has officially sprung. The weather is getting warmer, flowers are blooming, and the promise of new life is all around us. Death and darkness are in our seasonal rear view mirror. But one of the best things about being a horror fans, is that you have something to watch throughout the cycle of the year. We also often keep our horror viewings relatively seasonal. So what is there for a horror fanatic to watch during this time of oppressive cheerfulness?
With the breakout success of Stranger Things and the plethora of 1980’s inspired genre fare popping up recently, it seems as though we have been indulging in a certain level of what I like to call "nostalgia porn". These 80’s throwbacks have saturated the genre over the past several years and don’t seem to be stopping any time soon. But what is it about this era of horror that we all find so appealing, even to those of us that were not even alive yet? Horror films in the 80’s benefitted from a very special window of freedom.
Long before the days of film festivals and conventions, even before the days of celluloid, the primary medium of entertainment was theater. Now I’m not talking about the high class productions found in London’s West End or the black tie affair of the opera; I’m talking about something much more objectionable. If you had visited Paris at the tail end of the 19th century, deep in it’s notorious Monmarte district, and you had walked along it’s cobblestone streets, past it’s illicit sex trade operations, you would have come upon an old gothic looking chapel.
The first time I ever heard about The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, my mother was talking about how it was the most brutal, gory movie she had ever seen. By the time I got around to actually seeing the film, it was much to my surprise, although brutal as it was, it had little to no blood. Even the majority of the violence is implied. So what was it that had my Mom so convinced that she had seen a bloodbath? The biggest contributing factor was the power of sound design. As a horror fan, I have come to appreciate the importance and potential of sound design in a very unique way.
Often considered to be the master of “body horror”, David Cronenberg has spent the last four decades constructing a signature style that is often copied but rarely matched. His visceral visual style and directing talent make for a great filmmaker but Cronenberg’s ability to creatively and critically observe humanity through his films make him as close to a contemporary philosopher as filmmakers really get. Exploration seems to be the goal of his films.
All right folks, as promised, I wanted to follow up last week’s list with five more picks of films that take place in movie theaters. Just a warning, I do go off the rails a bit on this list. A couple of the films are not single location and stray quite a bit from the theater setting, but bear with me.
As the largest and longest running horror film festival in the United States, we here at Screamfest are no strangers to the power of the theater going experience. Most of us cinegeeks recall some of our best memories as those spent in the darkness of movie theaters. Even now, as streaming becomes the standard, I’m optimistic for the staying power of the theater. Watching films at home, although convenient, does not quite compare to the energy of a crowd, especially in regards to genre films.
Seeing as how we are counting down the last few days of February, I’m going to take this opportunity to celebrate one more woman who has recently popped back into the zeitgeist, cult film extraordinaire, Jackie Kong. At this point the difficulties women face in Hollywood have been more than expressed, but as an Asian American woman making sleazy horror comedies in the 1980’s, writer/director Jackie Kong sure as hell had her work cut out for her. Despite her relatively few directorial ventures, she quickly established a signature style all of her own.
What’s better than a scary movie? A much shorter scary movie! Well okay, maybe not, but it will impinge on your highly coveted spare time much less. So, in honor of the weekly releases of short films on the Screamfest Youtube page, and of course Women in Horror month, here are five spine-tingling short films directed by women:
Growing up with the admittedly ambitious dream of becoming a horror filmmaker, I accepted pretty early on that female role models were few and far between. Not that I was particularly seeking them out, I idolized all the great male directors just the same, however I would still find myself subconsciously scouring the credits of scary movies for potentially female names because, for me, that made my goal that much more attainable.
It’s that time again! It is time for the Twisted Twins’ annual Blood Drive PSA. For those who are unfamiliar, The Massive Blood Drive PSA is the brainchild of filmmaking duo, Jen and Sylvia Soska. Each year the twins and a handful of other talented up and coming filmmakers, release a series of blood-centric, NSFW shorts throughout February in honor of Women in Horror Month.
Although January may not be a month most people associate with horror, it can be credited with ushering in some very special people onto our plane of existence. So as the month comes to a close, I would like to extend a very heartfelt Happy Birthday to five people who have contributed largely to the genre and filmmaking as a whole.
Fear was viral at the LA Premiere of Bedeviled on October 22, 2016 at the 16th annual Horror Festival. The Nicholl Felloship winners directors Abel and Burlee Vang were in attendance along with some of the cast members and an almost sold out crowd!
Five teenagers receive an invite to download a Siri-like app. Once they accept this app which calls itself Mister Bedevil, it begins to torment each of them by tapping into their worst fears. To stop this malevolent force, the teens must learn to trust and depend on each other’s wits and courage.
Found Footage 3D made its Los Angeles premiere at Screamfest on October 26, 2016 in 3D!
The Director Steven DeGennaro; actors Carter Roy, Alena von Stroheim, Chris O'Brien, Jessica Perrin, Scott Allen Perry, Scott Weinberg; Producer Charles Mulford and the Cinematographer Drew Daniels were in attendance at the premiere.
Found Footage 3D is about a group of filmmakers sets out to make the first 3D found footage horror movie, but find themselves IN a found footage horror movie when the evil entity from their film escapes into their behind-the-scenes footage.
Screamfest had an amazing six blocks of short films and one block of student short films premiering at the 2016 festival. We were fortunate to have some short filmmakers in attendance for the majority of the festival who supported their fellow filmmakers. It was great getting to know these filmmakers and making new friendships. They also had the opportunity to network with other filmmakers during the ten day festival run. The winner of the Best Short award was A NEARLY PERFECT BLUE SKY by Quarxx. The winning student short was PIGSKIN by Jake Hammond.
Murdering psychopath Mick Taylor (John Jarratt), one of the most terrifying killers ever depicted on the big screen, attended Screamfest on Wednesday, October 19 at 8:30 PM for the special screening of the WOLF CREEK television series: www.poptv.com/wolfcreek. Fans joined John for a complimentary cocktail reception at Sid's Bar in the theater lobby while playing horror trivia.
The revenge thriller, MY FATHER DIE celebrated its Los Angeles premiere at the 16th annual Screamfest Horror Film Festival as the closing night film.
The movie’s L.A. premiere at the TCL Chinese 6 Theatres took place October 27, 2016. In attendance were director Sean Brosnan, who made his feature film writing and directing. Other special guests at the screening included the cast and crew from the film. A Q& A followed the screening.
Boozing it up at bars is fun and all, but even that can get boring after awhile. The antidote is the Fears & Beers screening of SCREAM on Thursday December 8th at 7:30PM at the TCL Chinese Theatres 6 in Hollywood & Highland. Join us for a fun evening of SCREAM trivia with PRIZES!! A Q&A follows the screening.
The imaginative fantasy horror movie, ‘The Master Cleanse,’ celebrated its Los Angeles premiere at the 16th annual Screamfest Horror Film Festival.
The movie’s L.A. premiere at the TCL Chinese 6 Theatres took place October 22, 2016. In attendance were actor-executive producer Johnny Galecki and filmmaker Bobby Miller, who made his feature film writing and directing. Bobby Miller is a Screamfest alumni with his short film Tub that premiered in 2010. Other special guests at the screening included actors Chris Hardwick who moderated the Q& A following the screening.
Screamfest Horror Film Festival celebrated the Los Angeles Premiere of TRASH FIRE on Tuesday, October 18th, 2016 at the TCL Chinese Theatre.
In attendance from the film: Angela Trimbur (The Final Girls, “The New Girl”), Ray Santiago (“Ash vs Evil Dead,” In Time), Sally Kirkland (Bruce Almighty, JFK), Molly McCook (“The Ranch,” “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.”), director Richard Bates Jr. (Excision, Suburban Gothic) and more.
America’s largest and longest running horror movie festival, Screamfest, awarded the top movies, filmmakers, and actors of the festival. The festival, which ran from October 18-27, 2016, at the TLC Chinese in Hollywood, has launched careers – providing a platform for filmmakers and actors to showcase their latest work to enthusiasts and general audiences.
HOLLYWOOD – Sept. 7, 2016 – America’s largest and longest running horror film festival, Screamfest Horror Film Festival, announces the first wave of its official 2016 film line up. The festival, which will run from Oct. 18-27, 2016 at the TLC Chinese in Hollywood, has launched careers - providing a platform for filmmakers and actors to showcase their latest work to enthusiasts and general audiences. Actress Lydia Hearst (Condemned, #Horror) will serve as ambassador for the festival.
Screamfest Horror Film Festival runs for ten days in October and although films are the main attraction during the festival, we do have a few other tricks up out sleeves. This year we added additional attractions to the festival, including a wonderful dark art show featuring a different artist each day. Check out some of the photos of the art that was displayed. On Saturday October 17th, 2015, the talented artist Peter Goode painted live in the theater lobby.
HOLLYWOOD – Oct. 23, 2015 – We are pleased to announce the 2015 Festival winners at last night's Awards reception that took place at the TCL Chinese 6 Theatres. The award winners were presented the coveted Screamfest Skull Award last night for winning in the following categories.
Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension premiered as the closing night film of the festival to over 700 attendees, playing in RealD 3D at the TCL Chinese Theatre Thursday, Oct. 22, the day before its wide release.
The premiere featured a red carpet with an impressive pre party held in the orange courtyard. Those fortunate enough to have the right ticket in hand got access to trendy food trucks, a pop up candy store, free tee shirts, and a dj pumpin the jams and handing out some killer raffle prizes.
The USC’s School of Cinematic Arts class co-taught by James Franco, Vince Jolivette and SCA Faculty John Watson, had its premiere screening of 'THE LABYRINTH' at SCREAMFEST on October 18th, 2015. 'THE LABYRINTH' is a bold new feature-length film produced by James Franco and Vince Jolivette’s Rabbit Bandini Productions, made in partnership with USC’s School of Cinematic Arts.
The feature film Condemned premiered on Sunday October 18th, 2015 at Screamfest. The stars of the film graciously signed posters for fans in the theater lobby. After the screening, Chris Hardwick of Nerdist (Talking Dead) moderated a Q & A with Lydia Hearst, Dylan Penn, Honor Titus, Genevieve Hudson-Price, Perry Yung, Kevin Kirkwood Smith and Ronen Rubinstein. Sean Penn was in attendance supporting his daughter Dylan Penn who stars in the film.
Feast had its 10 year anniversary at Screamfest on Friday October 16th, 2015. A Conversation with director John Gulager, Diane Gulager, producer Clu Gulager, Chris Moore, writers Marcus Dunstan and Patrick Melton, actresses Krista Allen and Jenny Wade, Nick Phillips, Duane Whitaker, Gary Tunnicliffe and Judah Friedlander followed the screening. Take a look at this great article by Jonathan Weichsel of MoreHorror.com.
Hangman premiered Wednesday October 14, 2015 at Screamfest. The Hangman (Eric Michael Cole) made his appearance in the theater unnerving some audience members in good fun. A Q& A followed the screening with Jeremy Sisto (Law and Order), Kate Ashfield (Shaun of Dead) and Eric Michael Cole (The Hangman). Fans took selfies with Jeremy and the Hangman (Eric Michael Cole) following the Q & A.
After the sold out screening of Tales of Halloween, guest walked across Hollywood Blvd to Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium for an evening of epic oddness & good times! Guest dined on a shrimp cocktail brain, prosciutto eyeballs, ghostly puffed pastry with goat cheese, tapenade & olive face, stake through the heart caprese skewers, bocconcini eyeballs with prosciutto, olive & parma ham and sweet mummy berries of white chocolate, cupcakes with body parts, an amazing Freddy Krueger cake and drinks from the fully stocked open bar.
The scary movie will close out the horror film festival. Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension will premiere as the closing night of the Screamfest Horror Film Festival, playing in RealD 3D at the TCL Chinese Theatre Thursday, October 22, the day before its wide release.
Enter for your chance to RSVP for tickets to the INTO THE FURTHER 4D experience (while supplies last) in Los Angeles taking place Friday 5/15, Saturday 5/16, Sunday 5/17.
Experience the world of INSIDIOUS like you never have before. The “Into The Further 4D Experience” is a fully-immersive experience that will take you physically and virtually into the world of INSIDIOUS: CHAPTER 3.
Take a peek at the closing night awards ceremony & reception that took place Wednesday October 22nd. Video courtesy of John Elfers. Closing night awards & reception photos by Angelica Ulloa. We were honored to screen each film selection in the festival this year and to celebrate the winners. The 14th annual Screamfest Horror Festival concluded on the evening of October 22nd with an Awards Ceremony and Reception.
"Fear Clinic" Premiere-- Black Carpet on Sunday October 22nd at Screamfest Horror Film Festival. Check out the exclusive interview with Fear Clinic star Corey Taylor by Sean Decker of Dread Central. Video courtesy of John Elfers. SPOILER ALERT! Don't watch until AFTER you've seen the film! The Q&A with Corey Taylor, Writer Aaron R. Drane, fx gurus Bob Kurtzman (Predator, Army of Darkness) and Steve Johnson (Predator, Spiderman) will be posted soon.
We were fortunate to have many filmmakers of short films attend the 2014 festival. The quality of these short films is astounding! Click on the photo link to see photos of some of the amazing short filmmakers that attended the 2014 festival. SEE MORE PHOTOS HERE. Take a look at the “Shorts to Die For” lineup of 40 short films from all across the globe--
"And you thought the 80's were dead!" In this clever homage to 80's slasher films, a group of teenagers looking to party get stranded when their ride breaks down, and end up being stalked by a cannibalistic killer.
"Lost After Dark" Premiere-- Black Carpet with the film director Ian Kessner, cast and crew on Monday October 20th at Screamfest Horror Film Festival. Exclusive video courtesy of John Elfers. Lost After Dark black carpet photos by Angelica Ulloa.
"GirlHouse" Premiere-- Black Carpet and Q&A on Monday October 20th at Screamfest Horror Film Festival. Exclusive video courtesy of John Elfers. Spoiler Alert! Don't watch until AFTER you have seen the film. Watch the Q&A with producer/co-director Trevor Matthews, producer-writer Nick Gordon, actresses Elysia Rotaru & Zuleyka Silver that followed the film, moderated by Garrick Dion - Bron Studios and co producer of Drive and Whiplash. GirlHouse black carpet and Q&A photos by Angelica Ulloa.
"The Creep Behind the Camera" Premiere-- Black Carpet and Q&A on Sunday October 19th at Screamfest Horror Film Festival. Video courtesy of John Elfers. The Q&A that followed the screening with Director Pete Schuermann, Producer Nancy Theken, Actors Josh Phillips & Jodi Lynn Thomas. Introduced by Trace Beaulieu and Frank Conniff of MST3K (Mystery Science Theatre 3K). The Creep Behind the Camera black carpet photos by Angelica Ulloa.
"I Survived a Zombie Holocaust" Premiere-- Black Carpet and Q&A on Saturday October 18th at Screamfest Horror Film Festival. Exclusive video courtesy of John Elfers. Spoiler Alert! Don't watch until AFTER you have seen the film. See director Guy Pigden, DP Jon Wilson and stars Harley Neville & Reanin Johannink walk the black carpet. Watch the Q&A that followed the film, moderated by Fred Topel of Craveonline. I Survived a Zombie Holocaust black carpet and Q&A photos by Angelica Ulloa.
Screamfest celebrated the Los Angeles Premiere of Suburban Gothic on October 18th, 20146 at the TCL Chinese Theatre. Suburban Gothic is director Richard Bates Jr's second film following Excision, his gruesome horror about a disturbed teen's mental state.
In attendance from the film were Ray Wise (Twin Peaks), Ray Santiago (“Ash vs Evil Dead,” In Time), Sally Kirkland (Bruce Almighty, JFK), along with director Richard Bates Jr. (Excision, Suburban Gothic) and more. Actor Matthew Gray Gubler won the Best Actor award for his performance.
"The House at the End of Time" winner of the Best Picture and Best Director award this year with the short film "The Good Samaritan" and "Refuge" Premiere-- Black Carpet and Q&A on Saturday October 18th at Screamfest Horror Film Festival. Video courtesy of John Elfers. Spoiler Alert! Don't watch until AFTER you have seen the film.
A sudden and mysterious inheritance brings Danny and his friends to Hobb Springs, a forgotten resort deep in the West Virginia hills. Hobb Springs is being looked after under the watchful care of Jackson and Sally, a socially and awkward couple who introduce Danny to the long lost family he's never known. Soon, Danny is forced to choose between his friends and his bloodline.
Screamfest "Dark Was the Night" Premiere-- Black Carpet and Q&A on Thursday October 16th at Screamfest Horror Film Festival. Video courtesy of John Elfers. Dark Was the Night red carpet and Q&A photos by Angelica Ulloa.
We were honored to screen each film selection in the festival this year and to celebrate the winners. The 14th annual Screamfest Horror Festival concluded on the evening of October 22nd with an Awards Ceremony and Reception. The hosts for the evening were Sean Decker of Dread Central and actress Bel Delia of The Tunnel a 2011 Screamfest Selection. Awards were given out in 14 categories including the Best Screenplay Award. Congratulations Festival Winners!
The world premiere of Jen and Sylvia Soska’s feature See No Evil 2 took place October 15, 2014 at the TCL Chinese Theaters in Hollywood.
In attendance for the event were the film’s directors, Jen and Sylvia Soska (American Mary), and cast members WWE Superstar Glen “Kane” Jacobs, Danielle Harris (Halloween, Hatchet II), Lee Majdoub, and Kaj-Erik Eriksen as well as actress Paula Lindberg (American Mary) and rockers Slash and Glenn Danzig.
Have a look at some of the Screamfest Opening Night fun that took place on Tuesday October 14th, of the SOLD OUT world premiere of Parlor. Check back often for updated photos and video of the events over the ten days of the festival. Video courtesy of. Opening night red carpet photos by Angelica Ulloa and Sean Decker of Dread Central. Parlor Q&A photos and Opening Night Party photos by Angelica Ulloa.
Spoiler Alert! Don't watch THE Q & A video until AFTER you've seen the film! This was the Q&A following the sold-out screening--
Alone (Seule) (France) – Directed by Didier Philippe - Claire, a young woman, lives alone in a large apartment. Her fear of the outside world stops her from going out and letting people in. One day, she discovers evidence revealing that a man lives in her home. The presence of that man becomes more and more apparent and eventually threatening...
Screamfest Announces First Wave……More Fun Than A Chainsaw!!
Hollywood, CA., August 18, 2014 – Screamfest®, from the festival that brought you such films as Trick ‘r Treat, Paranormal Activity, The Human Centipede and American Mary, announces the first wave of the 2014 festival. Screamfest® kicks off its 14th annual event in Los Angeles on October 14 through October 23 at the TCL Chinese 6 Theatres (6801 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, CA 90028).
What a great time we had at our mixer at Delphine in Hollywood, CA Thursday night. Check out our photos from the mixer and see all the fun we were having. If you couldn't make it, be sure to join us next time. Like us on Facebook or Check back on our site for the next date.
Look like a blood bath butcher at the grill this summer with a killer bloody Screamfest Apron. This Apron features realistic blood stains and hand prints. Make sure you answer the door in this apron when someone comes over, their facial expressions are priceless!
What a wonderful evening we had at the FEARS & BEERS screening of Bride of Chucky with special guest Jennifer Tilly, Brad Dourif & Alexis Arquette, held at the sleekMGN Five Star Cinema in Glendale on April 24th.
Ten years ago, tragedy struck the Russell family, leaving the lives of teenage siblings Tim and Kaylie forever changed when Tim was convicted of the brutal murder of their parents. Now in his 20s, Tim is newly released from protective custody and only wants to move on with his life; but Kaylie, still haunted by that fateful night, is convinced her parents’ deaths were caused by something else altogether: a malevolent supernatural force unleashed through the Lasser Glass, an antique mirror in their childhood home.
Congratulations to talented artist Stephane Le Brethon of Villeurbanne, France for creating the Talenthouse winning design of the 2013 Screamfest Horror Film Festival recyclable keepsake bag distributed at the Opening Night Party.
We would also like to congratulate Becky Doyon of Maine for winning the Talenthouse People's Choice for her design.
Thank you to all the artist that took the time to create designs for our collaboration with Talenthouse.
The feature film Beneath opened the 13th annual Screamfest Horror Film Festival held October 8th, 2013 to a sold out crowd. Our Screamfest photographer Angelica Ulloa captured the excitement of Opening Night. Click on the link below to see all the festival photos.
13th ANNUAL …………… Screamfest Announces Next Wave of Films
Hollywood, CA., September 24, 2013 – Screamfest®, premiering films from around the world. Screamfest takes place October 8 through October 17 at the Laemmle NoHo 7 (5240 Lankershim Blvd, North Hollywood, CA 91601).
Hollywood, CA., September 13, 2013 – Screamfest®, the preeminent horror festival in the country, and what the LA Weekly calls “the best place to get a jump on tomorrow’s cult hits” kicks off its 13th annual event in Los Angeles on October 8 through October 17 at the Laemmle NoHo 7 (5240 Lankershim Blvd, North Hollywood, CA 91601).
Hollywood, CA., September 4, 2013 – Screamfest®, the preeminent horror festival in the country, and what the LA Weekly calls “the best place to get a jump on tomorrow’s cult hits” kicks off its 13th annual event in Los Angeles on October 8 through October 17 at the Laemmle NoHo 7 (5240 Lankershim Blvd, North Hollywood, CA 91601).
First Wave Screening Highlights at Screamfest 2013
It was a packed fun filled night at Skinny's Lounge last night. Thanks to the Son of a Bun food truck for the delicious food. Don't forget to check our website and Facebook every month for Mixer announcements. If you are in the industry or simply a fan of horror this is a great place for networking and just having a great time talking about Horror movies. We have introduced Horror Pictionary into our mixers for added fun. Do you have an awesome horror game idea?
Screamfest title THALE just completed its theatrical run in last month. It played in Boston, San Francisco, Seattle, Portland, Denver, New York and Los Angeles. If you were not lucky enough to be in one of these cities to see it on the big screen, you can check it out on iTunes and VOD. It is also available on DVD (Walmart, BestBuy, Amazon etc.) and still in the top of the Amazon charts as of this post.