LATEST | FEATURES | INTERVIEWS | NEWS | FRIGHTFEST | REVIEWS

Arrow Video FrightFest 2019 announces 20th year record-breaking line-up
By James Whittington, Thursday 4th July 2019
FrightFest 2019 Banner

The UK's biggest and boldest horror and fantasy film festival is celebrating its 20th bloody year. Since 2000 it has made its indelible mark, not only on the ever-burgeoning horror community but also on the UK genre landscape as a whole. The internationally renowned event leads the way in attesting to the versatility of the genre, its reinvention and its growing importance in the cultural landscape and this year is no exception.

Arrow Video FrightFest 2019 is back at the Cineworld Leicester Square and The Prince Charles Cinema from August 22nd - August 26th. Hosting a record-breaking seventy-eight films, embracing fourteen countries and spanning six continents, this year's five-day fear-a-thon includes 20 World, 20 International/European and 28 UK Premieres.

As previously announced, this year's festivities begin with the UK premiere of Ant Timpson's deviously edgy stunner Come To Daddy, starring Elijah Wood and reaches its bloody conclusion with the World premiere of Abner Pastoll's superbly crafted crime story, A Good Woman Is Hard To Find. Other main screen international attractions include producer Guillermo del Toro and director Andre Ovredal's Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark, producer Sam Raimi and director Alexandre Aja's gruesome 'gator yarn Crawl, the Radio Silence gang's lethal thriller Ready Or Not, director Kiah Roache-Turner's futuristic Ozploitation classic Nekrotronic, Pedro C. Alonso's startling captive chiller Feedback, with a career-defining performance from Eddie Marsan, Kirill Sokolov's splatterpunk action comedy Why Don't You Just Die! and Jason Mewes' insanely brilliant Madness In The Method, starring Mewes, Vinnie Jones, Kevin Smith, Teri Hatcher, Dean Cain and with a final on-screen appearance from Stan Lee.

Making their second, very welcome appearance at the festival will be The Soska Sisters, attending for the World Premiere of Rabid, their eagerly anticipated re-imagining of the Cronenberg classic. The sisters will also introduce a special retrospective screening of the original. Also attending is the legendary Dario Argento, here for a special screening of his giallo masterpiece Tenebrae. He'll also be in conversation with Festival co-director Alan Jones and signing copies of his book, Fear, which Jones has adapted and edited. More attending guests will be announced later this month.

FrightFest's 20th year sees the return of directorial alumni like Adam Egypt Mortimer with his provocative psychological horror Daniel Isn't Real, Christian Alvart with his twisted blockbuster Cut-Off, Lucky McKee with the startling Kindred Spirits, starring Thora Birch, Joe Begos with his terror trip Bliss, Larry Fessenden with Depraved, a post-modern take on the Frankenstein legend, Padraig Reynolds with belligerent creature feature Dark Light, producer Eli Roth with the grindhouse-inspired Haunt, The Pierce Brothers' bring us their chiller The Wretched, Dan Bush is back with seat-edge shocker The Dark Red, Jordan 'Zombeavers' Rubin teases us with tongue-in-chic horror comedy The Drone and 'Level 16' director Danishka Esterhazy gives us her fun-packed body-counter The Banana Splits. There is also the UK premiere of Girl On The Third Floor, the directorial debut from returning producer Travis Stevens and Darlin', the directorial debut of past FrightFest 'darling' Pollyanna McIntosh Plus, those fur balls with teeth are back. Critters Attack!, with original star Dee Wallace, will enjoy its UK Premiere.

FrightFest continues to present the films that are currently shaking up the genre scene and allowing it to transform and continually excite. Like Michael Goi's Mary starring Gary Oldman and Emily Mortimer, the inventive Eat Brains Love from Rodman Flender, Seann William Scott's stunning serial killer turn in Bloodline, Chelsea Stardust's hilarious Satanic Panic, the unforgettable coming-of-ager Knives And Skin, The Black String, marking the comeback of Frankie Muniz, Kelola Racela's lustfully demonic Porno, the incredible animation attraction To Your Last Death, Emma Tammi's critically acclaimed The Wind, Fernando Alle's Troma-inspired Mutant Blast, and the two craziest Midnight Movies you will ever see - Valeri Milev's fabulously inventive Bullets Of Justice and Fabricio Bittar's Brazilian gorefest Ghost Killers Vs. Bloody Mary.

The genre scene in the UK continues to innovate and thrive, reflected in this year's First Blood strand. Life coaches become dead coaches in Staten Cousins-Poe's gem of a feature debut A Serial Killer's Guide To Life and Graham Hughes' viral mockumentary Death Of A Vlogger, gives the found footage format a much-needed shot in the arm. Then there's Samuel Gridley's darkly funny Criminal Audition, Magnus Wake's cleverly plotted and heart-pounding Dark Sense and making up the fearsome five is Fredi Nwaka's Are We Dead Yet, a cleverly crafted supernatural comedy-crime thriller.

Other home-grown selections include the European premiere of Tales From The Lodge Abigail Blackmore's portmanteau shocker, starring Mackenzie Crook and Johnny Vegas, Carl Strathe's disturbing Dark Encounter, starring Laura Fraser and Alice Lowe, and the world premiere of Charlie Steeds' flesh-eating horror The Barge People. There are also world premieres for Justin Edgar's nail-biting suspense thriller Stalked (AKA Unseen), Tom Paton's heightened horror Stairs and producer/director Lawrie Brewster's For We Are Many, in which directors from around the world unleash a legion of demons. And let's not forget director Jack McHenry, who makes a welcome return with his crowd-pleasing Here Comes Hell, which made huge waves at our Glasgow edition earlier this year.

Over the years FrightFest has showcased the best genre films Canada has to offer and this year a special strand has been created - Canadian Chills - to highlight an exceptional bumper crop, which, apart from Rabid, embraces the International premiere of Colin Minihan and director Kurtis David Harder's smart chiller Spiral and the UK premieres of Tony Dean Smith's sci-fi mind-bender Volition, Ray Xue's entertainingly nasty Extracurricular, starring Luke Goss, Chad Archibald's deadly thriller I'll Take Your Dead, Cameron Macgowan's dark comedy chiller Red Letter Day and Jordan Barker's unrelenting assault of pure terror, Witches In The Woods. Then there are World premieres for Jay Dahl's malevolent Halloween Party and Braden Croft's compelling True Fiction. Completing the line-up are Zack Lipovsky and Adam B. Stein's FrightFest Glasgow hit Freaks, the International premiere of Rob Grant's sick, sea-faring adventure Harpoon and the UK premiere of the sinister and challenging Happy Face, this year's Duke Mitchell presentation.

Another country with a fine FrightFest pedigree is Argentina and this year is no exception; with the World Premiere of producer Javier Diment's chilling chamber piece Rock, Paper Scissors, plus the European premiere of Herman Finding's Impossible Crimes and the UK premiere of Pablo Pares' apocalyptic powerhouse I Am Toxic.

The global cabinet of fear holds more...Tunisia is represented for the first time with the UK premiere of Dachra, an intense folk horror that has broken box office records in North Africa and Japan offers up a forgotten musical cult gem from 1985 - The Legend Of The Stardust Brothers. Ireland's entry is Paddy Murphy's The Perished. Mixing horror and pertinent social issues, the film marks the debut of a new Irish genre voice.

Further indie discoveries on the monstrous menu are: Australian chase chiller The Furies, the elegantly scary The Sonata, social media shocker Deadcon, Driven, a smart, meter-running battle against evil, Eric Pennycroft's brooding Sadistic Intentions, with Larry Fessenden, the horrifying Christmas cracker I Trapped The Devil, the quirky, cutting Fingers and The Deeper You Dig, a Coen-Brothers-esque story of grief and survival from Toby Poser and John Adams.

Documentary lovers will enjoy Dima Ballin's The Magnificent Obsession Of Michael Reeves, charting the life and early death of the man who gave us Witchfinder General and two documentaries from director David Gregory, Master Of Dark Shadows, an in-depth look at the talents of Dan Curtis, the "King of TV horror" and Sick! Savage! Sensual! The Reel Life And Ghastly Death Of Al Adamson, which tells the bizarre and grim demise of one of Hollywood's exploitation bad boys.

In a first for FrightFest, there will be a special preview of Man Of Medan, the first game in The Dark Pictures anthology. This will be followed by a Q+A session with the key development talent behind the game. The much anticipated interactive narrative horror adventure, developed by Supermassive Games and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment Europe, brings supernatural horror on board a ghost-ship adrift in the South Pacific. It is set to be released for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One August 30, 2019.

Festival co-director Alan Jones, said today: "Over the last two decades we have tirelessly introduced our committed audiences to every trend, every new talent and every innovation that has put horror back in the collective cinephile conscious. Even after 20 years. FrightFest's August event remains a key destination to see the latest genre movies in the manner for which they were made - on the Big Screen surrounded by fellow fear-mongers. Remember, it's our party and we'll scream if we want to!"

This year's guest list, special events and the Short Film Showcase entries will all be announced in the coming weeks.

Festival passes will go on sale Saturday 6 July at noon and will only be available to buy online.

As ever, Horror will be there reporting on everything FrightFest as well as reviewing and blogging as well as Facebook Live broadcasts.


Related show tags: ROAD GAMES, SOME KIND OF HATE, WITCHFINDER GENERAL
MORE FRIGHTFEST
Interview with Sean Nichols Lynch writer and director of Red Snow
Posted on Sunday 5th September 2021
RedSnow-poster

Final film of Arrow Films FrightFest Online Edition 2021 is a fangtastic (sorry) twist on the vampire movie, Sean Nichols Lynch's Red Snow. We had a quick chat about this blood-splattered shocker which has a deep vein of humour running through it.

HC: Where did the idea for Red Snow come from?

SL: I was trying to get a different horror feature financed and was struggling to get it off the ground. It was a frustrating period for me, and I honestly felt like I'd never get to make another film. I happened to run into Dennice, who I knew from my film school days at San Francisco State. We got to talking and I started to think about how great it would be to just drop everything and ...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Alex Kahuam writer and director of Forgiveness
Posted on Sunday 5th September 2021
Alex Kahuam 1 Forgiveness

Director Alex Kahuam has brought to Arrow Films FrightFest Online Edition a brutal and intelligent film, Forgiveness. Almost devoid of dialogue, it's an excursion into the raw side of reality. Here he chats about this movie and his plans for the future.

HC: Was there one movie you saw when growing up which made you want to go into filmmaking?

AK: When we were kids my brother and I my parents took us a lot to the theaters and this is where everything began for me. I just loved the experience so much and till this day I thank them because they triggered this on me and for many years filmmaking has been my life. While growing up Hollywood films have always be...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Sarah Appleton co-writer and co-director of The Found Footage Phenomenon
Posted on Sunday 5th September 2021
Sarah Appleton

The final documentary of FrightFest Online Edition looks to one of the most misunderstood genres out there. The Found Footage Phenomenon dissects this often over-looked type of movie with interviews from many key players. We chatted to co-writer and co-director Sarah Appleton about this very informative piece.

HC: Have you always been a fan of horror movies?

SA: Yes, I grew up watching Hammer horror movies and Japanese horror because my dad was a film critic, so I used to look through all his VHS tapes he'd taped off the late night tv and pick something to watch. Evil Dead II was one of the first horror movies I ever saw, aged about 8.

HC: Can you recall the first fo...

SHARE: READ MORE
Taxi rides and crumbling hotels - Day 5 of Arrow Video FrightFest Online Edition: Part 2
Posted on Sunday 5th September 2021
NightDrive-poster

As we enter the final evening of Arrow Films FrightFest Online Edition 2021 there's still plenty to look forward to starting with a belter from directors Brad Baruh and Meghan Leon, Night Drive. Ride-share app driver Russell picks up his Hollywood fare Charlotte... and his whole life turns upside down. Slipping him a wad of cash, she hires him for the rest of the evening. Their first stop at her ex's place sees Charlotte running out the door clutching a tiny suitcase being chased. They make their escape, but accidentally run over a pedestrian, setting in motion a chain of gruesome events that will go to places Russell could never have imagined in his wildest dreams. What starts off as a simpl...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Josh Stifter director of Greywood's Plot
Posted on Sunday 5th September 2021
GreywoodsPlot-1

There are a number of monochrome movies at FrightFest this year and one of the stand out ones is Josh Stifter's Greywood's Plot so we had a quick chat with him about it.

HC: Was there one movie you saw when you were younger that made you want to be in the filmmaking business?

JS: Beetlejuice. I saw it when I was 5 years old. My family all got the flu and my mom went and rented it. This was back in the day when you didn't have access as easily to movies so if you rented a movie, it often would get watched a couple times before it was returned. Since we had nothing else to do, we all just laid around sick watching Beetlejuice over and over. I became obsessed. It was the first tim...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Conor Stechschulte writer of Ultrasound
Posted on Sunday 5th September 2021
Ultrasound-1

Based on his own graphic novel 'Generous Bosom', Conor Stechschulte has written a tight and tense script for Ultrasound which is showing today at Arrow Films Fright Online Edition. We chatted to him about the process of bringing his original idea to the big screen.

HC: Did you know from a young age that you wanted to become a writer?

CS: I did! At about 7 or 8 I went from wanting to be a fighter pilot to wanting to be a writer. My formal education is in visual art, but I've always had narratives at the heart of all the creative work that I make and have never really stopped writing in one form or another.

HC: Was there any one person who inspired you?

CS: I can't...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Rob Schroeder director of Ultrasound
Posted on Sunday 5th September 2021
Ultrasound-1

The feature debut of Rob Schroeder, producer of Sun Choke and Beyond The Gates, Ultrasound is a startling puzzle box Sci-Fi mystery and playing today at Arrow Films FrightFest Online Event. We chatted to Rob about this chilling movie.

HC: Did you know from a young age that you wanted to be in filmmaking?

RS: Not really. When I was young, I loved going to the movie theatre every week, but I didn't see filmmaking as a career because in my town I didn't know any filmmakers. The movies were always so special for me and even sacred, so at a young age I did sense the magic.

HC: How did become attached to this project?

RS: I developed the project, by reaching out to Cono...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Peter Daskaloff director and co-writer of Antidote
Posted on Sunday 5th September 2021
Peter Daskaloff Anitdote

Peter Daskaloff has brought his nerve-jangling movie Antidote to FrightFest Online Eidtion 2021 so we chatted to him about this complex and intriguing movie.

HC: What is your writing method when working alongside someone else?

PD: I usually write alone. But for Antidote, I had to hire a co-writer because the subject was complex. I needed another set of eyes to look at it from outside my box. Matt Toronto was recommended to me by my executive producer, Ian Michaels, who has worked with Matt before. The collaboration was a bit bumpy, but the resulting script turned out pretty good.

HC: How did you go about casting the movie?

PD: I had a casti...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Francesco Erba writer and director of As in Heaven, So on Earth
Posted on Sunday 5th September 2021
Francesco Erba As In Heaven director

As In Heaven, So On Earth mixes the found footage genre with incredible animation to deliver a truly unique take on the format. The movie effortlessly moves from its gothic animation to cutting edge technology footage and brings together a tale which is emotional and utterly heart breaking in equal measure. We chatted to its writer and director Francesco Erba as it plays at FrightFest Online Edition 2021.

HC: Where did the idea for As in Heaven, So on Earth come from?

FE: As in Heaven, So on Earth was born not only from one specific idea but, as very often occurs, from many different ones, different influences and life experien...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Casey Dillard actor and writer of Killer Concept
Posted on Sunday 5th September 2021
KillerConcept-2

If you managed to catch Driven the other year at FrightFest then you'll need to catch Killer Concept today. Writer Casey Dillard is back alongside director Glenn Payne but this time serial killers are the target. We chatted to Casey about this movie.

HC: It's been a couple of years since we last chatted, apart from Killer Concept, what have you been up to?

CD: Mostly avoiding Covid and trying to find work-arounds so that I can still perform safely.

HC: Where did the idea for Killer Concept come from?

CD: Glenn wanted to make a simple movie with minimal people while our core filmmaking team was unable to go to work so we kicked around a lot of ideas and KC wa...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Glenn Payne director and actor from Killer Concept
Posted on Sunday 5th September 2021
KillerConcept-poster

If you managed to catch Driven the other year at FrightFest then you'll need to catch Killer Concept today. Director Glenn Payne is back alongside writer Casey Dillard but this time serial killers are the target. We chatted to him about this movie.

HC: It's been a couple of years since you brought the superb movie Driven to FrightFest, how was that movie received across the world?

GP: Thank you for the kind words! We've felt very blessed by how warm the reception's been for Driven. We knew the story was different, given the entire thing takes place inside one vehicle, but the characters really seemed to resonate with people. I think that's a huge testament to the per...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Chad Crawford Kinkle writer and director of Dementer
Posted on Sunday 5th September 2021
Chad Crawford Kinkle Dementer Image 2

A movie which is bold not only with its storytelling but its casting is playing today at FrightFest. Dementer from Chad Crawford Kinkle, is an emotional, raw and very real feeling movie built around a care home which delivers some of the most effective acting you'll see at the event this year. Here he chats about this superb film.

HC: Where did the idea for Dementer come from?

CK: The idea was really years in the making. I had always wanted to do a film with my sister but my mind always went to doing a documentary of some sort. Then one year at Sundance, I watched the movie The Tribe and it sparked an idea that I could set a narrativ...

SHARE: READ MORE
Frightfest Archive: 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007
PICK OF THE WEEK
Aquaslash
AQUASLASH
Friday 10th December
9.00 PM
Let Me In
LET ME IN
Wednesday 15th December
9.00 PM
Lake Placid: The Final Chapter
LAKE PLACID: THE FINAL CHAPTER
Monday 6th December
9.00 PM