Tuesday, 11 August 2020

Interview with Alastair Orr

Ahead of the UK premiere of TRIGGERED, his cat-and-mouse slasher, Alastair Orr talks about being inspired by old console games and why he loves working in South Africa.

We last saw you at FrightFest with FROM A HOUSE ON WILLLOW STREET, how’s life been treating you since that time?

It’s been great. I got married, had a kid, got into massive amounts of debt with Bitcoin - I’ve made a lot of great life decisions since FrightFest 2016.

How did David D. Jones’ TRIGGERED script end up in your capable hands?

I was working on a bigger film with David that we couldn’t raise the money for. So he pitched something way cheaper that we could do. It’s eleven characters in the woods, so it seemed super easy on the page, but was quite a nightmare to shoot,

Was the script really inspired by retro video games from the 1990s?

Yes, it’s definitely inspired by the old console games where you get to steal time from your opponent, there were a couple out there back in the day. Then to some extant even your Street Fighter and Mortal Combat games had the element where you have to kill your opponent before your time runs out. Things have come full circle now with Battle Royale games like Fortnite, but we wanted to make something with old-school graphics and sound effects and music, so we feel our film is definitely a throwback to our childhoods as opposed to the new wave of these type of games.

What do you think you brought to the project or was everything very much in place in the final draft?

David did an awesome job getting it over the finish line and shoot ready. It was only on set when things bombed out that I was able to step in and make decisions on the set. If he was down in South Africa I’m sure he would’ve been right there next to me making those decisions. Script-wise…his original idea was to have you get rewarded with time by doing certain activities like helping your friends out, or getting closer to solving the murder mystery that runs throughout the film. We decided to simplify the gamification a lot once we got closer to shooting.

Give an insight into how you assembled the cast: what qualities were you mainly looking for?

We were looking for actors that just wanted to be there and didn’t bring a plethora of demands and attitude. We knew it was going to be a tough shoot so we looked for kids that had a great attitude and were up for anything. We also tried to cast the actors as close to the characters as possible so that we could improves if necessary.

Just like with your past four movies you edited the movie yourself. Do you direct knowing in your mind how exactly you want to cut it together, or is it a more organic process than that?

I edit my movies because there isn’t money to hire an editor, so it’s definitely not a control thing.  The editing on Triggered was harder because we had less footage. While we were shooting at night, I would do a rough cut of scenes during the day, so there wasn’t a lot of sleep going on. The pros of editing your own film are that you get to do things your way, but a serious con that worked against me on this one was that some insecurities that festered with me on set made their way in to the edit suite. I had to constantly get reassurances from the producers that this was the right way to go - where as if I had an editor, he/she probably would’ve convinced me straight away that things weren’t as dire as I thought.

And just like your past four movies TRIGGERED is once more in the horror thriller fantasy arena. Why is it you gravitate towards the genre?

These are just the kind of films Ariye (my producing partner) and I want to make. We’re just not drawn to stories that don’t have some kind of genre spin on them

What was the hardest aspect of making TRIGGERED?

I know every filmmaker says time and money, but we really were in short supply on both on this. We got so tired of waiting for investors and finding distributors to invest in us that we decided to fund it ourselves. We (Ariye Mahdeb and I) just had to make a film. We shot for fifteen days, four of which were probably completely lost to rain, but the crew and cast never once dropped the ball. Our vests were pretty problematic also, we had to keep bringing our buddies with electrical engineering degrees onto set to keep wiring them and programming them. You really get a sense of who your real friends are when you ask them to come out and help you at midnight on your indie film.

How is working in South Africa and what do you see as the future for genre filmmakers in the country?

Working in South Africa is the best. People are so willing to help out and jump on board that you really do get to play with awesome tools even if you don’t have the budget your overseas contemporaries are playing with, and the government really helped us with some funding on this one also. South Africa is really exploding with Genre films now. When I started with my first film in 2010 it really was a lonely club, but now South African genre films are popping up at festivals around the world and guys are making some really awesome stuff. It’s really exciting and a lot of the directors who would usually only make drama films are now seeing how commercial Genre fair is and what an appetite the rest of the world has for it.

Finally, what’s next?

We’re busy with a big action movie that was scheduled to shoot this year, but with Covid hitting that doesn’t look likely. It’s a way bigger budget to what I’m used to and I’m loving the freedom a bit of extra money allows. I’m also really digging the way my horror background can tie in with the action scenes and how the two can play nicely together.

TRIGGERED is showing online on Friday 28 August, 9.30pm in the Horror Channel screen, as part of the Arrow Video FrightFest August Digital event.

Thursday, 6 August 2020

Arrow Video FrightFest announces August 2020 Short Film Programme

Available to watch on demand from 6pm Thursday 27th to 9pm Monday 31st August

The films may be short, but there is no shortage of scares as Arrow Video FrightFest 2020 showcases the best new short films from the UK and around the world, with six countries representing three continents. From under-the-bed monsters to monsters in front of your eyes, from the sinister and the creepy to the wickedly human and the not-so-human, this year’s selection shines a spotlight on upcoming filmmakers.

The UK is represented with a record eleven entries. There are world premiere screenings for WEREWOLF, where game night just got dangerous, A BIT OF FUN, where a girls’ night in brings out the dead and THE BEHOLDER, in which you’d be wise to beware the eyes of strangers…

Homeland talent is further highlighted with FLESH Control, which will surely bug you and in THE AFTERLIFE BUREAU who says there is no paperwork when you’re dead? Staying indoors has its drawbacks in THE GIFT and domestic issues take on a whole new, monstrous meaning in KEITH. Keeping your eyes shut won’t keep him out in GUEST and your senses can possibly drive you mad in FUEL. You might want to be careful when you get your camera phone out in OUZO AND THE BLACKCURRANT and revenge takes on a twisted form in THE MOTORIST.

Internationally, there is plenty of madness and mayhem on offer, whether it be the savagery of Canadian entry BARK, the ferocious hunger of Australian offering BREAKFAST or the passionate zombie love tiff in LOVE BITE from the States. Spain brings us an unwanted sexual hologram in the surreal POLOVOTRON 500, whilst Sweden brings us unnerving family tension in WASH. There are four further deathly premieres from the US – JEFF DRIVES YOU, where death is in the driving seat, SUBJECT 3, where death always seems to be just around the corner, DEATH WALKS ON NITRATE, in which a photographer experiences a giallo-esque nightmare and finally, the world premiere of TARRARE, which is based on the terrifyingly true story of a man afflicted with unceasing hunger.

Programmer Shelagh Rowan-Legg said today: “With a 30% increase in submissions for the 2020 season, it’s been a joy to find the gems to screen for our audience. As some press articles have noted, fans of horror and science fiction films seem to have a better time coping with our current global crisis, both through our community connections, and our familiarity with all the things that can go to a state or horror or strangeness. There’s no limits to the creativity of our filmmakers, or the dark corners they are willing to explore.”

The full line-up:


Bark (European Premiere)
Director: Ryan Irving. Cast: Ryan Irving, Alexia Lavigne, Anna Barker. Canada 2019. 6 min.

It’s a beautiful day in the park, one that our hero usually enjoys. And he could, except for the terrible event he will have to witness, helpless to intervene.

A Bit of Fun (World Premiere)
Director: Florence Kosky. Cast: Elizabeth McCafferty, Roxana Chakrabarti, Tess Annan, Tallulah Bond. UK 2020. 9 min.

It’s just another fun girls’ night in, to talk about school, sex, and raising the dead. You know, the usual.

Breakfast (European)
Directors: Paul Beattie, Melanie Rios. Cast: Rebecca Smee, Brendan Donoghue, Jaxson Dimitrov. Australia 2019. 11 min.

After being bedridden for months, Katherine is finally awake. And she’s hungry. And not just for bacon and eggs.

FLESH Control (European Premiere)
Director: Christopher McSherry. Cast: Clark Chambers, Joseph O'Hagan. UK 2019. 9 min.

It’s a typical day of fumigation for these two exterminators. But who is being exterminated and what is doing the job?

Subject 3 (International Premiere)
Director: Teresa Decher. Cast: Teresa Decher, Steven Cox, Paul Greene. USA 2019. 12 min.

A young woman needs to say her last goodbye to an old friend, as she traverses a world in the midst of a pandemic.

Jeff Drives You (UK Premiere)
Director: Aidan Brezonick. Cast: Addison Heimann, Tanner Rittenhouse. USA 2019. 17 min.

David thinks he just got lucky when he gets to take a fancy driverless car to a wedding. But the AI has more to offer than just a smooth ride.

Ouzo and Blackcurrant (UK Premiere)
Director: Nat Luurtsema. Cast: Cherelle Skeete, Sara Huxley. UK 2020. 7 min.

Esta and Jeanie just want to reminisce about the good old days; but they weren’t all good, as something wants them to remember.

Tarrare (World Premiere)
Director: Brian Gillespie. Cast: Ian Lassiter. USA 2020. 6 min.

Based on the terrifyingly true story of a man afflicted with unceasing hunger...

Guest (European Premiere)
Director: Finn Callan. Cast: Melania Crisan, Jessica Munna, Anna Fraser. UK 2020. 12 min.

Something just won’t leave Mary alone, no matter how long she keeps her eyes closed. Drastic measures must be taken.

The Beholder (World Premiere)
Director: Shaun Clark. Cast: Melvyn Ternan. UK 2020. 1 min.

The eye is the window to the soul. That is why it terrifies us.


Werewolf (World Premiere)
Director: Markus Meedt. Cast: Will Seaward, Katie Redford. UK 2020. 10 min.

It’s game night for a group of friends, and while the rivalry is light, the dangers are increasing.

The Motorist (London Premiere)
Director: Ciaran Lyons. Cast: Douglas Russell, John Cooke. UK 2019. 10 min.

After a man accidently hits someone on a lonely country road, a group forms to exact an odd form of justice.

Love Bite (UK Premiere)
Director: Charles de Lauzirika. Cast: Carlee Baker, Cuyle Carvin, Bella. USA 2019. 16 min.

A weary couple bickers over how to survive the zombie apocalypse. Not everyone is surviving the night.

The Gift (UK Premiere)
Director: Laura-Beth Cowley. Cast: Rowan Carmichael. UK 2019. 3 min.

Monthly cycles may be a literal and metaphorical pain, but through that comes power.

Wash (UK Premiere)
Director: Kristofer Kiggs Carlsson. Cast: Amelia Clay, Ida Lungqvist. Sweden 2019. 7 min.

It’s laundry day for this single mother. But this might be a far more dangerous activity than she fully realizes.

Fuel (International Premiere)
Director: Hermione Sylvester. Cast: Olivia Vinall, Angus Wright. UK 2019. 9 min.

The lines between art and reality are blurred as a woman copes with an uninvited man from her past, and dangerous strangers in the present.

Polvotron 500 (London Premiere)
Director: Silvia Conesa. Cast: Nuria Deulofeu, Gerard MatarĂ­. Spain 2019. 11 min.

Charly just wants a quiet night’s sleep. Maybe he shouldn’t have chosen a holographic booth that provides intimate services.

Keith (International Premiere)
Director: Alex Baro-Cayetano. Cast: Bear Winter-Perreau, Mia Hemerling. UK 2019. 3 min.

A little girl is about to discover more than she dreamed about the monster under her bed.

Death Walks on Nitrate (European Premiere)
Director: Kevin Fermini. Cast: Katie Carpenter, Sasha Friedman, Anna Bishop. USA 2020. 8 min.

A photographer is about to enter a giallo-esque world where nothing is as it seems.

The Afterlife Bureau (London Premiere)
Director: Dimiter Dimiroff. Cast: Sue Appleby, Gordon Peaston, Richard Cunningham. UK 20219. 13 min.

No one appreciates how hard it is to be a civil servant. Especially on the other side.


To access tickets: https://frightfest2020.eventive.org/welcome

Monday, 3 August 2020

Interview with Brea Grant Ahead of the FrightFest UK premiere of 12 HOUR SHIFT

Ahead of the FrightFest UK premiere of 12 HOUR SHIFT, director Brea Grant talks about her ‘Valentine to East Texas’, the heroism of nurses and being a child of the 90s.

You’ve said 12 HOUR SHIFT is a valentine to East Texas and the hospital staff who looked after your elderly father, could you elaborate?

I grew up in East Texas and most people will say that in spite of not living there since I was 18, I have a lot of very small town Texan qualities. My hometown is full of no-nonsense, hard-working people, so I took these characters and combined them with something that was very much on my mind when I first started writing the film - nurses in hospitals. There has been this sudden worldwide awareness of the importance essential workers since the start of COVID-19 but anyone like me with an elderly parent, sick loved one or health issues of their own can attest to how much we rely on nurses and hospital staff.

These nurses are superheroes. My dad had had a fall when I started writing this and we went through hospital, rehabilitation, and extended care all while he is battling Alzheimer’s. The hospital workers take care of everybody through what is the most stressful time of all our lives. They have to deal with life or death situations. It’s just an incredible person who goes into that profession. 12 HOUR SHIFT is funny and silly but at its core, I wanted to show the stress of being in a line of work where there is no downtime and you have people’s lives on your hands.

Why the 1999 New Year Y2K setting?

I’m a child of the 90s so my brain still lives in the pre-Y2K era whether I like it or not. Y2K was what I now think of a global urban legend. We were all convinced the world was going to suddenly turn into an apocalyptic landscape at the stroke of midnight. I have always been fascinated by urban legends and 12 HOUR SHIFT’s jumping off point is the urban legend about the person waking up without a kidney in a bathtub full of ice.

Brea Grant on the set of 12 HOUR SHIFT

Did you always have Angela Bettis, star of the extraordinary MAY, in mind for the lead role?

I didn’t, but I have always loved Angela’s work. I keep a running list of actors I’d love to work with and she has always been at the top. I named the lead of Lucky, another film I wrote, May as a nod to that movie. When I brought the idea of her as Mandy up to my producers, they were also huge fans and thought she had the right gravitas for the role. I sat down with her and begged her to be in the film. It’s a tough role because it’s an underplayed lead surrounded by all of these heightened characters all while dealing with a very intense drug addiction and she pulls it off beautifully.

You filmed in a working hospital, how difficult was that to navigate?

I thank my producers for that over at HCT Media. Two of them are from Arkansas and my producer, Tara’s dad (shout out to John Perry who also has a cameo in the movie!) knew of a hospital in their town that had an empty floor that hadn’t been updated since the 90s. They were about to redo it and my producers asked them if we could shoot in it first. Occasionally, we would have patients stumble in looking for directions but overall, it was a dream for an indie because we had the entire floor to ourselves.

The movie is one of constantly shifting tones, from stark realism to horror, from comedy to anxiety, did that evolve organically while you filmed or was it always part of the plan?

Most of that was in the script. I ended up hiring a lot of improvisors in the supporting roles so the movie ended up being more bizarre and funny that I imagined originally but I was happy with where it went. They took the characters I had written and ran with them in the best way. Overall, I gravitate towards projects that are tonally interesting. I like a comedy. I like movies that are fun and escapist. I wanted it to feel like a heightened world while still having this very dark center. I want to keep the audience constantly on the edge of their seats. They don’t know what’s going to happen next.

You have become such a fixture on the global fantasy festival circuit with your past genre work, how important is that in your estimation?

That’s really nice of you to say. I love the genre community. Early on in my career I was mostly working in television and got a little taste of what it was like to be in the indie genre world. The community was so nice and supportive and I realized it was something I wanted to pursue. We don’t make a lot of money making indie genre so it has to be something you are really passionate about. In my personal life, most of my friends don’t like horror, so having a festival community has been a really nice way to be able to talk about the things I love.

What did actress Brea bring to the director Brea table with respect to 12 HOUR SHIFT?

I try to see what actors need from me and make a comfortable place for them to play. As an actor, I love constant feedback but some actors don’t want that. I check in early and often to see if they are getting what they need. On film sets (it’s not as possible when I’m directing TV) I also make sure we always do an “actor take.” That’s a take where they can throw away the script, throw away my notes, and do it how they see it. I end up using these takes so much. At the end of the day, as pretentious as this will sound, I’m a storyteller no matter what role I’m in. I want to do what serves the story best. I think about that before every scene no matter what my job is that day.

Will you continue to work in both fields or do you prefer directing over acting?

I still like acting. I just acted in a movie earlier this year for director Jill Sixx called THE STYLIST. But if you made me choose, I would choose writing and directing. My heart is in it no matter what I’m working on. Filmmaking as a profession fits my personality and personal goals much more.

You represent a double whammy this year what with 12 HOUR SHIFT and staring in LUCKY, which you wrote. Do you share the same creative values and work ethic?

Definitely. Our work relationship came so easily it was almost scary. She is just as passionate about what she does as I am but I prefer to work with people who can balance passion with professionalism. Natasha always did that. She had faith in my script from the beginning and I had faith in her vision as a director. We had met before and had one call before I agreed she was right for it. I was a fan of IMITATION GIRL and knew she could elevate LUCKY in the same way. Once she was on board to direct, it was Natasha’s vision 100%. I wanted to do whatever I needed to do to help her achieve that as an actress and a writer. And I think we were able to come out with an incredible film.

Finally, what’s next?

Like I said, I did some acting this year in THE STYLIST across from Najarra Townsend, who is so amazing to work with. I believe it will hit fests next year. I have a graphic novel called MARY that is coming out in October. And I’m working a bit more in the television space. During quarantine, I got the opportunity to write on two different shows, one called UNCONVENTIONAL and the CW show, PANDORA. I am also headed out to direct more episodes of Pandora next month.

12 HOUR SHIFT is showing online on Friday 28 August, 8.45pm, in the Arrow Video Screen, as part of the Arrow Video FrightFest August Digital event.

Tickets: www.frightfest.co.uk

Friday, 31 July 2020

A Night of Horror : Nightmare Radio - 10 of horror’s hottest rising filmmakers unite to tell 8 terrifying tales

Available On Demand and DVD September 1

10 horrifying tales directed by 8 of horror's most talented filmmakers

A Night of Horror : Nightmare Radio, premiering on Demand and DVD September 1, is a new anthology from brothers Luciano Onetti and Nicolas Onetti. Joining the Onettis are filmmakers Sergio Morcillo, Joshua Long, Jason Bognacki, Adam O´Brien, Matt Richards, A.J. Briones, Pablo S. Pastor and Oliver Park.

Rod, radio DJ, hosts a popular horror-themed show packed with tales of terror for eager listeners. When he receives alarming calls from a horrified child things start to feel off. What ensues is a roller-coaster ride of horror stories…

Ian Costello, Clara Kovacic, and James Wright help make up the cast.

A Night of Horror : Nightmare Radio is being distributed by Uncorkd’ Entertainment.

Tuesday, 28 July 2020

Interview with Theresa Halvorsen - By David Kempf

When did you first become interested in writing?  

I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t creating stories in my head or on paper. My first written story when I was about six, was about a princess who survived a plane crash with her maid and wandered around in the forest chatting with the animals. She eventually found her way out of the forest and returned home. As you can see, Disney was huge in our house.

How did you get involved in fantasy/horror? 

Again, this goes back to childhood, but after my princess phase. For fantasy, I read Frank Baum’s Oz books so many times I could’ve recited them. Then I read everything I could get my hands on about ‘true’ ghost stories. This was pre-internet so the only place I could go was the library. From there it was an easy transition into Stephen King, and Raymond Feist. Of course I continued to make up my own stories, which is as is so often the case, borrowed from the authors I was currently reading.

Tell us about your publisher. 

I’m currently working with S&H Publishing, a small press. I’ve very much enjoyed working with them as they’ve allowed me to have a significant say in the publishing process. They’re quick to respond and very willing to work with their authors.

How would you classify the genre you write? 

Oh jeez--I struggled with this one for Warehouse Dreams. For Warehouse Dreams, I landed on soft sci-fi romance. But because it’s set in contemporary Chicago, it definitely has urban fantasy connotations. But since it deals with genetic manipulation, telepaths and psychokinetics, that moves it a little more into sci-fi. I have another series coming soon about haunted houses in Sacramento and those are in the paranormal romance genre. If I had to choose one genre that encompsses all that I have or will write, I’d say I’m a spec-fiction writer.

Buy Warehouse Dreams from Amazon at

Why do you think horror and fantasy books remain so popular? 

I think at the end of the day, humans just want to be entertained. Horor is entertaining; it makes our hearts pound, it makes us groan and wince or makes us hide under the blankets. Good horror makes us think because it should have some psychological elements as well. Fantasy is popular for people who want to exist in a different world. Fantasy tends to be hopeful, at least in the end--the good win and the bad are vanquished though good vs bad has become increasingly gray in the fantasy realm. 

What inspires your stories? 

My primary goal is to entertain. I want people to take a step away from their lives into stories and characters they love and root for. But I also want to normalize characters with mental health issues as well. All of my main characters are dealing with or have dealt with some level of depression or anxiety.

What do you think the main differences between American horror and British horror are? 

Uhhhhhhh….I’m definitely not an expert in British horror. I think American horror tends to have more gore and British horror tends to have more atmosphere.

What are your favorite horror books? 

Stephen King’s Bag of Bones is one of my favorite all time books. I also really enjoyed Mira Grant’s Into the Drowning Deep.

What are some of your favorite horror movies? 

I have a love/hate relationship with horror movies. I love the creepy build-up, but generally don’t feel like the pay-off is worth it. I loved Get Out and did enjoy the Haunting of Hill House, both of which have huge psychological elements.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment as an author? 

As of this moment, I would say the release of Warehouse Dreams. Depending on how you look at it, Warehouse Dreams either took me a year or ten years depending on how you look at the story’s evolution. I’m so very pleased that it’s available for readers who will hopefully love this world and characters as much as I do.

Do you have any advice for new writers? 

Yes! Don’t stop writing. And there’s no ‘right’ way to be a writer or become published. Every person’s path is different, so what worked for one person may or may not work for another. Find out your path and don’t let anyone tell you, your way is wrong. And remember, if you write, YOU ARE A WRITER regardless of publication.

What is your opinion of the new self-publishing trend? 

I know many self-published writers with fantastic works and self-publishing is a great way to get a writer’s vision for their story in front of readers much quicker than traditional. However, there is a risk of self-published writers moving too quickly and putting out books that lack a coat of polish.

What are your current projects? 

I’m currently working on the sequel to Warehouse Dreams and a paranormal romance trilogy based in Sacramento.

Please in your own words, write a paragraph about yourself & your work. 

Theresa Halvorsen has never met a profanity she hasn’t enjoyed. She’s generally overly caffeinated and at times, wine soaked. She’s the author of both nonfiction and speculative fiction works and wonders what sleep is. When she’s not writing or podcasting at Semi-Sages of the Pages she’s commuting through San Diego traffic to her healthcare position. In whatever free time is left, Theresa enjoys board games, geeky conventions, and reading. She loves meeting and assisting other writers, and being a Beta reader is a particular joy. Her life goal is to give "Oh-My-Gosh-This-Book-Is-So-Good" happiness to her readers.

She lives in Temecula with her amazing and supportive husband, on occasion, her college age twins and the pets they’d promised to care for.

Find her at  www.TheresaHauthor.com and on Twitter and Facebook.

Buy Warehouse Dreams from Amazon at

Also available.
The Dad's Playbook to Labor & Birth: A Practical and Strategic Guide to Preparing for the Big Day Kindle Edition

Thursday, 16 July 2020

Horror Channel highlights six summer weekend shockers in its August premiere line-up

August is a wicked month on Horror Channel, as the UK’s most popular small-screen destination for genre fans presents six summer weekend shockers, five FrightFest hits including the UK TV premieres of Julian Richards; REBORN, a Carrie for the Z Generation, starring horror icon Barbara Crampton, Jordan Barker’s WITCHES IN THE WOODS, an unrelenting assault of pure terror, Alistair Legrand’s highly unusual genre-blending chiller, THE DIABOLICAL and Milan Todorovic’s sharp-teethed, seductive KILLER MERMAIDS. All these films received FrightFest premiere screenings.

There is also a channel premiere for another FrightFest title, THE WINDMILL MASSACRE, where Friday The 13th goes Amicus in the Dutch countryside. Plus the mind-bending, twisty thriller IDENTITY gets a first showing on the channel.

Full film details in transmission order:

Saturday 1st August @ 23:15 – THE WINDMILL MASSACRE (2016) *Channel Premiere

A coach party of tourists embark on a tour of Holland’s windmills. When the bus breaks down, the strangers are forced to seek shelter in a disused barn beside a sinister windmill where, legend has it, a Devil-worshipping miller once ground the bones of locals instead of grain. As members of the group start disappearing, secrets are revealed that seem to mark them all for doom. 

Saturday 8 August @ 21:00 – KILLER MERMAIDS (2014) *UK TV Premiere

Kelly (Kristine Klebe) and Lucy (Natalie Burn), are on vacation in Montenegro with a group of friends. They decide to visit an abandoned military fortress on the remote island of Mamula. But what they discover there goes beyond all frightening insanity. For it’s the home of a Siren, a mermaid creature of Greek myth, lying in wait to lure men to their death with her enchanting beauty, entrancing song and razor-sharp teeth.

Saturday 15 August @ 21:00 – THE DIABOLICAL (2015) *UK TV Premiere

Single mother Madison and her two children keep being awoken nightly by an increasingly strange and intense presence. Seeking help from her scientist boyfriend, they embark on a hunt to destroy the violent spirit that paranormal experts are too scared to take on. But what is Project Echo and why does that past experiment seem to be impacting on their frightening present?

Saturday 22 August @ 21:00 – REBORN (2018) *UK TV Premiere

A stillborn baby girl is abducted by a deranged morgue attendant and brought back to life by electro-kinetic power. On her sixteenth birthday, traumatised Tess (Kayleigh Gilbert) escapes captivity and sets out to find her birth mother (played by Barbara Crampton), leaving a trail of horrifying violent destruction and chilling chaos behind her.

Saturday 29 August @ 21:00 – WITCHES IN THE WOODS (2019) *UK TV Premiere

A group of students head off for a snowboarding adventure on an untouched piece of land. When their SUV mysteriously stalls in a brutal snowstorm they are not only faced with the reality of freezing to death but a fate even more horrifying. For they have become stranded in Stoughton Valley, home of some Witch Trials even more horrendous than Salem, and are being hunted by a supernatural creature determined to keep them there.

Sunday 30 August @ 21:00 – IDENTITY (2003) *Channel Premiere

Ten strangers with secrets are brought together in a savage rainstorm – among them a limo driver (John Cusack), an ‘80s TV star (Rebecca De Mornay) and a cop (Ray Liotta) who is transporting a killer. They all take shelter at a desolate motel but relief is quickly replaced with fear as the ten travellers begin to die, one by one. They soon realise that, if they are to survive, they’ll have to uncover the secret that has brought them all together.

Tuesday, 16 June 2020

Horror Channel brings suspense and splatter to its July line-up

Horror Channel brings plenty of suspense and splatter to July’s line-up with the UK TV premiere of THE REZORT, where ‘The Walking Dead’ meets ‘Jurassic World’. Starring Dougray Scott and Jessica De Gouw, this fast-paced, gory horror is directed by Outpost franchise helmer Steve Barker.

There are also channel premieres for Damien MacĂ© & Alexis Wajsbrot’s cleverly sinister DON’T HANG UP, where an invisible predator turns the tables on two online prankers, and Paul W.S Anderson’s cult gaming adaptation RESIDENT EVIL, with Milla Jovovich and Michelle Rodriguez in blistering form.

Plus, there are welcome returns for NO ONE LIVES, director Ryuhei Kitamura’s taut, tension-laden cat-and-mouse thriller, starring Luke Evans, alongside Sam Raimi’s unforgettable genre classic THE EVIL DEAD and fans of Arnold Schwarzenegger will welcome the clone-seeker’s top-notch performance in THE 6TH DAY.

Full film details in transmission order:

Saturday 4 July @ 21:00 – THE REZORT (2015) *UK TV Premiere

In the aftermath of an apocalyptic zombie outbreak, rich holidaymakers can visit a luxury theme park where every paying guest has a license to kill the captive undead in organised Zombie Safaris. Such Zafaris are the ultimate blood sport experience and for many much-needed therapeutic revenge for suffering horrendous family losses. When the security system crashes at The ReZort, unleashing hordes of bloodthirsty Zee’s on the unprepared vacationers, it’s up to enigmatic, former zombie hunter Archer (Dougray Scott) to save the day.

Sunday 12 July @ 21:00 – DON’T HANG UP (2016) *Channel Premiere

Two teens devise ever more elaborate prank phone calls to share online for their eager followers into impersonal humiliation. But as their involved practical jokes become increasingly nastier, it never occurs to them they might be playing a very dangerous game. So when a mysterious threatening stranger calls the home landline, they suddenly realise they may be in very real peril, as the caller reveals the violent extremes he’s willing to employ to extract retribution before they’re able to reveal his identity.

Saturday 18 July @ 21:00 – RESIDENT EVIL (2002) *Channel Premiere

Based on the popular video game, Milla Jovovich and Michelle Rodriguez star as the leaders of a commando team who must break into "the hive," a vast underground genetics laboratory operated by the powerful Umbrella Corporation. There, a deadly virus has been unleashed, killing the lab's personnel and resurrecting them as the evil Un-dead. The team has just three hours to shut down the lab's supercomputer and close the facility before the virus threatens to overrun the Earth.

Saturday 11 July @ 23:00 – NO ONE LIVES (2012)

Fourteen students are murdered and the crime scene offers no clues to the whereabouts of the one person who could be the only survivor. Months later a gang of robbers screw up their latest heist and mug a couple in a car instead. What they realise too late is that the driver is the killer responsible for the student massacre. Then it’s Psycho vs. Psychos in a taut, tension-laden cat-and-mouse chiller that sees both sides trying to outdo the other.

Friday 17 July @ 22:50 – THE EVIL DEAD (1983)

Five college friends are holed up in a remote cabin where they discover a Book Of The Dead. An archaeologist's tape recording reveals that the ancient text was discovered among the Khandarian ruins of a Sumerian civilization. Playing the taped incantations, the friends unwittingly summon up dormant demons living in the nearby woods…

Saturday 25 July @ 21:00 – THE 6TH DAY (2000)

A ruthless power broker is using his advanced genetic-engineering technology to clone human beings for personal gain. Adam Gibson (Arnold Schwarzenegger), an old-fashioned family man and decorated fighter pilot comes home one night to discover that his life has been stolen by his clone, and his existence erased. Plunged into a sinister world of murder, corruption and high-tech deception, Adam must fight back in order to reclaim his family and his identity.

Horror Channel: Be Afraid
TV: Sky 317 / Virgin 149 / Freeview 70 / Freesat 138

Tuesday, 2 June 2020

Arrow FrightFest postpones 5-Day August Bank Holiday event / Plans in place to return in October

Due to the continuing COVID-19 restrictions on social distancing, Arrow FrightFest’s traditional five day event in August has been regretfully put on hold. Instead, the organisers are planning to expand their traditional all-day Halloween event at the end of October.

Alan Jones, co-director, said today: 
“Sadly, we won’t be able to come together and celebrate our 21st year in the summer but rest assured, we will make our London Halloween event one to remember. FrightFest has always been about the genre community joining together, not just to embrace films but to demonstrate our unique spirit of supportive closeness”.

The pandemic hasn’t stopped graphic artist Graham Humphreys from creating this year’s stunning Monster art. In fact, it inspirationally reflects the extraordinary and unexpected turn of events.

Humphreys comments: 
“The image presented a huge challenge. Not only had the pandemic erased any hope of a regular FrightFest schedule, but the possibility of a Halloween event needed to be addressed. This year's monster needed to consider his Covid-19 response with a mask and goggles. The poster for 'Halloween II' inspired a way to present the full face without risking infection! Is the bat his friendly familiar - or the bringer of pestilence? You decide!”

Details on dates, venues, films and ticketing for the Halloween event will be made available in due course.

Friday, 29 May 2020

Federico Zampaglione reveals second lockdown horror short BIANCA: PHASE 2.

Italian musician and film director Federico Zampaglione has followed up on his well-received short movie BIANCA, with an even more horrific study of Italy under lockdown - BIANCA: PHASE 2. Again shot on his iPad in three days and starring his ten year old daughter alongside his current partner, actress Giglia Marra, Zampagione, who created, edited and produced the film single-handedly, has cast his former wife, actress Claudia Gerini in a cameo role and, obeying lockdown rules, involved only family members in the location roles – Marco and Giula Chermaz, his cousin and nephew respectively

Phase 2 of the Italian lockdown has begun and Bianca (Linda Zampagilone) and her mother (Giglia Marra) decide to go to the reopened local park to enjoy their new found freedom in the sun. But an evil presence is stalking them and when Bianca is kidnapped, her mother enters a nightmare world trying to find and save her daughter from a terrible danger.

Federico said today: 
“This is the second episode of a planned trilogy, and the action has become more horror-oriented. The biggest challenge was making a beautiful Roman park look like a disturbing and creepy place. I had to make it look completely empty and desolate, so it was all about waiting for silence and using all the camera angles to avoid including other people in the frames.

One of the most interesting aspects to me, being a musician, was not using music that much.  Instead I worked a lot on building up an increasingly unnerving atmosphere using mostly natural sounds, like birds, dog barking, weird animal noises) rather than the classic score”.

Friday, 22 May 2020

Interview with Jeff Oliver By David Kempf

When did you first become interested in writing?

I started really writing when I was just 11 years old. It's was like a bomb went off within my soul. The ideas have flooded my mind ever since then. Think of it like a vortex of letters and words jumbling together 24 hours a day seven days a week. A blessing or a curse? Each day is different for me So the answer is both. I write so much my hands cramp up. The ideas keep coming even if I want to take a break, it's like something is telling me to keep going even if I don't feel like writing...it always seems like I have to.

How did you get involved in fantasy/horror?

I write real-life truths, horror is definitely one of them. I guess I've always written horror and the unimaginable. You know? Places most people are scared to go. Deep down in my mind lies something I can’t explain, voices and visions..childhood traumas and premonitions it’s like my soul will never be forgiven.

Tell us about your publisher.

I was published with Creative Talents Unleashed for my first book titled “Strange Sounds” which is my debut collection of poetry. It rages from love to insanity, Heaven and Hell and everything in between. The book is available on Amazon and is now Self published by me because the publisher has released all contracts to each author. I now have a new publisher “Cosby Media Productions” out of Atlanta Georgia which I have signed a 10 year contract with many great things ahead including another Poetry book this fall. Shortly before signing with Cosby Media, I self-published my debut horror novel “Poetic Fiction: Journals Of Silent Screams” it is a rhyming poetic horror story that talks about abuse and revenge. It is unlike anything out there.

How would you classify the genre you write?

From the soul, from the deepest corners of my mind. I don't label myself in any specific genre, because I never know what to expect when I start to write. One moment it's about my beautiful wife, the next it's the flames of Hell. I'm an unpredictable writer. Is there a category for that?

Why do you think horror and fantasy books remain so popular?

People adore the unknown and unexplainable, a quick rush. Fear is a natural emotion, we all have it in us. If it's triggered just right it opens doors we've never experienced before. Kind of like an escape from the reality of the world around us. Something different, something unreal. We all have that curiosity of the unknown, and reading a good way out of an often boring reality keeps interest in this style.

What inspires your stories?

Could be a word, could be a photo. My stories vary from love to pain. Hate and rage, insanity in its purest form. My stories are unique and people flock to my madness. I write what my soul is feeling at that particular moment.

What do you think the difference between American horror and British horror is?

Horror is determined by what kind of experience you have. I'm not sure this question could ever be answered correctly. It depends on the mindset of the writer, where they have been and where they are going with whatever story they are writing at the moment. In an open mind a horror story can be written in the most horrific fashion. Most of my horror stories are written from experience not fiction. Horror is sacrifice, and it depends on the writer to bring that to life. So I really don't see a difference between the two. I do see the same visions brought to life in their own unique ways though. In the end, it depends on the psyche of each individual writer to really get the hair standing up.

So I think the difference between the two is the mindset and the way they think of ways to make us scream.

What are your favorite horror books?

Stephen Kings IT, The Stand, Pet Sematary, The Exorcist, The Silence Of The Lambs, and The Hunger.

What are some of your favorite horror movies?

The Shining, Doctor Sleep, IT, Saw, The Exorcist, 47 meters Down.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment as an author?

I self-published my unique rhyming horror story ”Poetic Fiction: Journals Of Silent Screams, then shortly after signed with Cosby Media Productions.
Do you have any advice for new writers?

Just be yourself, write for you first. You will always have people that do not appreciate your work and dedication. Keep shining, keep grinding. Never give up on your dreams.
What is your opinion of the new self-publishing trend?

I've just recently self-published, so far it is okay. Sales are coming in and I've been self-promoting and am having some success. The shipping is slow because of what is going on in the world. I am new to it just released in March so I still have to see how it goes.

What are your current projects?

I have a project with Cosby Media that will be released this fall, no spoilers just yet.

Please in your own words, write a paragraph about yourself & your work.

Jeff Oliver was born in Baltimore Maryland on April 6th, 1982. Starting his writing career early at just 11 years old, his mind has always collected thoughts and transferred them to paper. There are thoughts about troubled childhood, thoughts of love and imagination never elude his pen. A poet by passion and a father of seven beautiful children his dedication to his craft is second to none. He resides in New York with the love of his life, Jennie. She is his muse. Madness lives in his mind sparking unimaginable works of art that will never be fully understood or explained. His words are real and provoke insanity through an imaginary portal of nightmares and dreams. A writer of intense emotions. Jeff has written a collection of poetry that was published last year by Creative Talents Unleashed titled Strange Sounds. His first fully published collection of poetry, full of monsters and beasts, love songs and total insanity.

As he evolves from poetry, he has now completed his very first unique hard-hitting novel. He is ready to take on this literary world with every emotion that resides in his soul. ”Madness illustrates what insanity demonstrates, while chaos illuminates what Hell creates”. An example of Jeff’s many styles of writing. Jeff wants to reach audiences of the broken and deranged, the misfits and the caged. He would like to reach the people that society seems to leave in waste. ”The mistakes”, the strange and the hated. The ones that people tend to forget. Jeff will never fit in just like the audience he seeks, he just wants the world to know that it’s okay to bleed.

Recently Signed with Cosby Media Productions with a 10 year contract.

POETIC FICTION: Journals Of Silent Screams


Facebook writer page Words from the soul