Frightfest – The Social Network

“I want to go to Frightfest but I’m afraid I’ll be on my own!”

Don’t be. Just because you’ll be spending hours and hours sitting in the dark having your nerves jangled and ears raped doesn’t mean there isn’t a social aspect to Frightfest.

Frightfest has a vibrant community online and in-person.

Firstly check out the Frightfest forums over on the official Frightfest website HERE. Even if you’re not going to Frightfest these forums are a great place to chat horror, get recommendations and talk to like-minded horrorites.

It’ll also ease off any nerves about the people attending Frightfest. From the forum you can tell they’re all awesome people and absolutely LOVE horror films.


“But what about Frightfest itself? I can’t just wander up to strangers and talk about films… can I?”

God yes! That’s what Frightfest is all about! Just because Frighfest films teach us that talking to strangers will result in our horrible and untimely deaths, it doesn’t mean the cinema foyer is full of nutters wanting to disembowel you!

I remember having heated ‘discussions’ about Martyrs and Inbred over the past few years, with people’s opinions massively divided!

Everyone is approachable (unless they’re total nobbers. There’s always a few) and the festival organizers are always happy to chat, although might have to run off to sort out any emergencies / fight crime!

I’ve only done Frightfest (the full weekend pass) once before, but I now get that sparkle of recognition from other Frightfesters and that uncertain half-nod which says ‘I think I know you, but I’m worried you’re actually just a mental person’.

Just approach people. Chat films. Gain friends. Make babies. Erm…

The ‘talent’ even hangs around before and after their films, with writers, directors, actors, producers, special effects people and endless other “film people” ready and willing to chat the horror. It’s their passion too, so go talk to them!

Regulars include Jake West, Christopher Smith, James Moran, Neil Marshall and Axelle Carolyn, amongst others. Last year Simon Pegg (of Star Trek fame) turned up, alongside Jonathan Ross and his flame-haired wife / uber-scriptwriter Jane Goldman. It’s an eclectic mix of film makers, fans, icons and crazy people. Just dive in.


Those wanting to get their social on early can attend the ‘pre-Frightfest drinks’ which kick off at 3pm on Thursday 23rd. Where?!

The Captains Cabin

4 to 7 Norris Street





It’s a Taylor Walker pub, so you gotta try their vegetarian fish and chips. Man, that stuff is AWESOME.

I know at least seven people who’ll be at this little shindig, so I hope they’ve got a lot of bar staff on… and a lot of drink deals. Four pints for a quid? Awesome!

The Frightfest rulers (or organizers. Whatever) have warned us not to get too hammered, which is probably a good idea, otherwise you might spend The Seasoning House blowing chunks on your neighbours. Which is bad.

Drink in moderation, overdose on horror – that’s the Frightfest way.


Thursday is also OPENING NIGHT and a peculiar tradition has snuck into Frightfest land over the past few years, and that’s for everyone to ‘dress up’.

By ‘dress up’ we don’t mean whack on a hockey mask and grab the nearest machete, we mean actually dress up ‘nicely’: in dresses, suits, ties, actual shoes and maybe something called ‘cufflinks’. Hey, why not wear a hat? I dare you.

I’ll personally be wearing something less casual than my usual faded T-shirt and ripped jeans. I might even polish my shoes. Or at least lick them until they’re a bit shiny.

This dressing up thang is not compulsory, but you should probably be aware it’s actually happening in case you think you’ve fallen into a different dimension.


Gorepress will be out in force on Friday, all boldly wearing our Gorepress T-shirts and hoping any directors I’ve pissed off aren’t there. With knives. I hear the director of The Bunnyman Massacre is flying across the pond specifically to punch me in the face.

Incidentally, the T-shirts are available to buy (you know you want one) from HERE, so you could turn up at Frightfest and pretend to be one of us. I’m the fat one with the face.

Come say hello!


Those lucky enough to have full Frightfest festival passes also have exclusive access to the Phoenix Artist Club, which is nestled gently below the Phoenix Theatre on Charing Cross Road. It’s a bitch to find if you’ve never been there, but just ask someone who knows and they’ll direct you there.


This is the place where the majority of festers end up until the god-awful early hours of the morning, normally finding themselves having a verbal duel with someone who swears blindly Dead Cert was a fantastic metaphor on 1950’s crime dramas. There will also be drink deals available for all Frightfest ticket holders.

It’s a place of drinks, laughter and the occasional outburst of anger followed by weeping and then shame. Like any good funeral. Just remember the next film is at 10am, so being piss-blind drunk at 2am isn’t a great idea…

On MONDAY 27TH AUGUST the Phoenix Artist Club will be open ALL NIGHT. That’s more of a threat than a piece of information. I apologise in advance for anything I do, say or sing.


I think there’s a huge amount of focus on the FILMS at Frightfest, but unlike a lot of other festivals there’s a real community at Frightfest and wanted to highlight it. Frightfest is a place overflowing with like-minded horror film fanatics and (without sounding trite) friends-in-the-making. Don’t just turn up and watch films.

Come along and meet people. Frightfest isn’t just about celebrating horror, it’s about celebrating the people who love it.

See you tomorrow!

Unless you’re not going. See you next year?

3 Comments on “Frightfest – The Social Network”

  1. George Galloway MP says:

    “Ears raped”? I’ll have you know that your ears had entered the sex game – no, what happened was simply poor ear-sex etiquette. This charge of ‘ears rape’ is politically motivated.

  2. Paul says:

    Will you be tweeting and facebooking while there, for those of us not lucky enough to come?

    • Scullion says:

      We’ll definitely be Tweeting anything exciting going on… when we have the time! It’s a crazty, furious ride, but there’ll definitely be a post-Frightfest report with all the gory details.

      Oh and what is this ‘Facebook’ thing you mention? Sounds scary…

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