ARTICLES

FEATURES | INTERVIEWS | NEWS | FRIGHTFEST | REVIEWS | BOOTH'S BLOG

Booth's Blog: The UK’s Biggest Horror Comp ‘Shortcuts To Hell’ Is Back
By James Whittington, Thursday 22nd May 2014

Emily Booth BladesI am genuinely excited to announce the news that our Shortcuts To Hell film competition is back and on the manhunt for some seriously hot new horror talent. And this time the competition is a lot more focused and driven on YOUR BIG DEBUT HORROR FILM. For those of you who don’t know we launched the competition last year in association with FrightFFest and Movie Mogul which saw 157 submissions all vying for the amazing prize. I, along with the other judges chose our 6 finalists of whom NFTS student Weronika Tofilska was announced as the overall winner claiming her prize of £6,666 and a development opportunity with Movie Mogul.

The result of this devilish competition has seen the event billed as ‘The UK’s answer to the ABC’s of Death’ with the best 26 short films making it into the anthology horror Shortcuts to Hell: Volume 1 available on iTunes and Blinkbox.

This year it’s a little different and even more exciting. But you gotta get your asses in gear! From now you have about 10 weeks to submit a 3-minute short film version of your full-length horror movie idea and must clearly demonstrate the core idea, premise, story and characters in narrative form. A shortlist of twenty-six finalists will then be invited to an interview where you will have the opportunity to pitch your feature film directly to the jury panel. Including me! And as I have just written, produced and starred in my own short film Selkie I honestly know the hard work it takes.

Three finalists will then go forward to this year’s FrightFest 2014 event at the Vue West End in London, and have their 3-minute films screened before the discerning FrightFest audience. An amazing accolade in itself, your film will be broadcast on Horror Channel throughout August and September, where the overall winner will be chosen by public vote! It’s the X Factor of Horror!

John Shackleton of Movie Mogul said this about what your entry should aim for: “Entries must be narrative driven short films, not trailers, scenes, pitches or promos, the overriding criteria is for the filmmakers to illustrate their exciting feature film concept, within a short form. It’s all about the big idea... do you have a strong hook that can be realized on a very restrictive budget?“

John also informed me that it wasn’t just the winner who gained bigtime last year. He is also working with 4 of last year finalists on projects, script writing and development, so doors will open to anyone who makes it to the final.

This really is a remarkable opportunity to find a creative and highly driven individual and change their lives. Receiving exposure at FrightFest and on TV with Horror Channel, the winner will have the opportunity to direct their debut feature film with Movie Mogul and Wildseed Studios on a guaranteed minimum cash budget of £20,000. This year we hope to launch a career, could it be yours?

Remember – that first passionate albeit low budget film can lead to huge things. Just read my blog last week about the success story of Monsters director Gareth Edwards whose second movie was Godzilla! Look at Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead, Steven Spielberg’s Duel, Peter Jackson’s Bad Taste and ask yourself; “Do I want to be up there amongst horror royalty?”

It does happen, it will happen again – but to who?!

Find out all you need to know in the link below. There ARE less film ‘restrictions’ this year but you still need to prove a budget spend of £666 and the film must be 3 minutes or less. The challenge has begun!

Shortcuts To Hell Website

Click here for last year's winning entry.


MORE FEATURES
Top 5 werewolf movie transformations
Posted on Saturday 10th February 2018

Come on, admit it! The biggest reason you watch a werewolf movie is to see the much talked-about transformation. You know, the bit of the movie that usually gets all the film budget (no matter how big or small) and the sequence where the rest of the movie will be measured.

Here's our top 5 but what are yours? Don't forget to catch Horror's Season of the Wolf, Saturdays at 10.55pm?

The Wolf Man (1941)
Though not Universal's first werewolf movie, that was Werewolf of London in 1936, this was the biggie. Unleashed in 1941 it was a major success and made Lon Chaney Jr. a real star. His laconic take of a weary man cursed is truly engrossing but what probably makes the movie famous is the transformation scene, well the lack of it as unlike the sequels the main transformation is of his feet! There is a dissolve at the end, but this is backwards, wolf to man but its ...

SHARE: READ MORE
There's something in the trees... it's coming! Top 5 Werewolf Songs!
Posted on Friday 2nd February 2018

Of all the horror genres out there, probably the Werewolf genre has made the largest footprint on the charts. From Shakira's She Wolf in 2009 to Killer Wolf from Danzig in 1990, the hairy-side of horror has inspired many musical artists, obviously with varying levels of success.

In celebration of Horror's Season of the Wolf, here's our top 5 favourites from the last few decades.

No list worth its fur would start without Werewolves of London from Warren Zevon. Recorded in 1978 and taken from the album Excitable Boy, it's a mainstay of BBC Radio 2, whose listeners incidentally voted that it had the best opening line to a song. Its inclusion on the soundtrack to An American Werewolf in London gave it a cult status but hearing it in the Paul Newman/Tom Cruise 1996 flick The Color of Money gave it a new lease of life. The B-side, Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner was...

SHARE: READ MORE
The Howling - A franchise with bite
Posted on Sunday 28th January 2018

Based on Gary Bradner's novel of the same name, The Howling is one of those werewolf movies that dared to be more vicious than its predecessors and yet still retained a more traditional tone. Horror is proud to be showing this classic on Saturday 3rd February as part of our Season of the Wolf, so here's a quick timeline of The Howling franchise and personal opinions of the movies. Let us know if you agree via email and our social feeds.

Directed by Joe Dante in 1981, The Howling took the young director to new heights after cult hits Piranha in 1978 and Rock N' Roll High School the following year. Though the movie only took some of the ideas from the original story, it was strong enough to earn itself a lastin...

SHARE: READ MORE
Bark at the moon this February on Horror
Posted on Friday 26th January 2018

Horror is taking you deep into the woods during February with a selection of movies that celebrate the finest of fearsome flicks all about Lycanthropy, Season of the Wolf. Each Saturday at 10.55pm we're bringing you tales of terror that are dripping with blood and will have you barking at the moon with delight.

The season starts on the 3rd as Dee Wallace, Christopher Stone, Patrick Macnee and John Carradine battle a brutal beast in Joe Dante's superb feature, The Howling. A female reporter is attacked by a notorious serial killer and to get over her trauma she is sent to 'The Colony', a remote mountain resort. But there her problems really begin, as the residents are werewolves. We bring you contemporary h...

SHARE: READ MORE
Wes Craven - The Nightmare Man
Posted on Thursday 4th January 2018

"Horror films don't create fear. They release it."

Wesley Earl Craven, Wes to his friends, was born in Cleveland, Ohio August 2nd 1939 and became one of the most respected and acclaimed creatives of his generation. When he died on August 30th 2015 it came as a huge shock to all, especially those of us who heard the news whilst attending FrightFest. Gone was the man who gave the world Krug Stillo, Pluto and Horace Pinker as well as the career defining creation of Freddy Krueger. He made stars of Michael Berryman, Johnny Depp and Robert Englund and rejuvenated the horror genre not once but twice.

Horror will be celebrating the work of Wes Craven throughout January so here's a quick look at...

SHARE: READ MORE
Horror's Top 10 Films of 2017
Posted on Thursday 21st December 2017

It's been quite the year for horror. From home invasions to adult nappies and right through to cannibalism and dancing clowns, the genre has seen a slew of critical and commercial success over the calendar year. But which were our favourites?

Below, take a look at Horror's favourite films of 2017. We couldn't bare to rank the excellencies, so we settled for alphabetical order. So kicking off with A, we have:

Attack of the Adult Babies

If you're after a movie that's almost beyond description, then Dominic Brunt's Attack of the Adult Babies is for you. At first this satirical shocker seems like Benny Hill on acid with plenty of leggy nurses dressed in seductive uniforms, but the movie...

SHARE: READ MORE
Wes Craven Season welcomes in 2018 on Horror
Posted on Friday 15th December 2017

Throughout January, Saturday nights at 9pm will be devoted to a Wes Craven Season as Horror Channel presents a retrospective of the late great genre director's career. Four of his supernatural shockers and scream-filled slashers will be broadcast, including the network premieres of serial killer chiller My Soul To Take, his macabre masterpiece The Serpent And The Rainbow, his diabolically electrifying Shocker and the goofy, gory satire The People Under The Stairs.

There are also network premieres for Franck Khalfoun's superior psychological horror Maniac, starring Elijah Wood as a scalp-loving serial killer, David S. Goyer's pulsating possession thriller The Unborn, starring Gary Oldman and Ham...

SHARE: READ MORE
The Evil In Us and P2 receive their UK TV premieres on Horror Channel in December
Posted on Wednesday 22nd November 2017

Christmas nightmares come early on Horror Channel, as the UK's primary TV destination for genre fans serves up the UK TV premieres of Jason William Lee's slick and stylish modern take on the zombie virus, The Evil In Us and Frank Khalfoun's boundary-pushing crime slasher P2, starring Wes Bentley.

There are also network premieres for Adam Egypt Mortimer's deeply-cutting supernatural revenge chiller Some Kind Of Hate, Ruth Platt's astonishingly bravura art-house horror The Lesson, Travis Oates' powerfully disturbing thriller Don't Blink, starring Mena Suvari and Glen Morgan's gruesome Black Christmas, a remake of the classic 1974 seasonal slasher, starring popular scream queen Mary Elizabeth Winstead....

SHARE: READ MORE
Horror Channel devotes November to Bloody Brits and rampaging sharks!
Posted on Thursday 19th October 2017

November on Horror Channel has a distinctive cutting-edge with a Saturday night prime-time Bloody British Season, celebrating the new wave of British horror movies that reinvigorated the UK horror industry in the early 2000s. There are 9pm network premieres for Neil Marshall's sensational werewolf debut feature Dog Soldiers (2002) (Saturday 11th), his monstrous all-female star cast follow-up The Descent (2005) (Saturday 25th), Christopher Smith's underground ghost train journey through hell, Creep (2004) (Saturday 18th), and Nick Hamm's psychologically gripping The Hole (2001) (Saturday 4th), with Keira Knightley in her first significant film role.

And the cuts get deeper with a Sharkmania Marathon...

SHARE: READ MORE
Horror Channel celebrates Stephen King's 70th year and goes Southbound this October.
Posted on Tuesday 3rd October 2017
Works by Stephen King feature heavily this month on Horror Channel, which celebrates the icon's 70th year of one of horror's most prolific and popular authors. There are network premieres for his fearsome feline anthology Cat's Eye, starring James Woods and Drew Barrymore; his darkly weighty cautionary tale Stephen King's Thinner, directed by Tom Holland in his directorial debut; the science-fiction action horror Maximum Overdrive, starring Emilio Estevez; and the 2009 adaptation of his short story Children Of The Corn.

Horror Channel has eleven film premieres in October, including the UK premieres of Southbound, a chiller compendium from the creators of the V/H/S franchise; Mitch Wilson's gruesome...

SHARE: READ MORE
Horror Channel FrightFest announces line-up for Halloween 2017 event
Posted on Thursday 28th September 2017

Horror Channel FrightFest Halloween 2017 unleashes seven choice shockers for the 7th annual West End Halloween chillorama - a wits-end wallow in all things gruesome, gory and glorious.

This year, the all-day shocktoberfest is at the Empire Haymarket on Sat Oct 28, 2017 and embraces one world, one European and five UK premieres, spanning three continents.

From the emotional making of a low-budget slasher to zombie nightmares, Gothic horrors, an outrageously strange mind cult, a sci-fi alien action extravaganza, a comic strip creature feature and the last word in Killer Clowns, this year-s line-up is an eclectic mix of the quirky, unusual and extreme.

Alan Jones, FrightFest co-director sai...

SHARE: READ MORE
Drag Me To Hell, Starry Eyes and Black Sheep amongst nine prime-time film premieres on Horror Channel in September
Posted on Sunday 20th August 2017

Horror Channel has nine prime-time film premieres in September including the UK premiere of Kevin Kolsch and Dennis Widmyer's stunning contemporary occult tale of Hollywood ambition and possession, Starry Eyes.

There are also network premieres for Sam Raimi's ferociously terrifying Drag Me To Hell, Eli Roth's splatter sensation Hostel, Mike Mendes' ultimate B-Movie experience Big Ass Spider, Jonathan King's zombie sheep gore comedy Black Sheep, James Wan's creepy killer-doll horror Dead Silence, starring True Blood's Ryan Kwanten, Robert Longo's cyberpunk action thriller Johnny Mnemonic, starring Keanu Reeves, Bryan Bertnia's home-invasion chiller The Strangers, starring Liv Tyler and John Carp...

SHARE: READ MORE
Features Archive: 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007
PICK OF THE WEEK
Alone In The Dark
ALONE IN THE DARK
Wednesday 28th February
9.00 PM
Prey
PREY
Thursday 1st March
9.00 PM
SeaQuest DSV
SEAQUEST DSV
Tuesday 6th March
8.00 PM