The UK’s leading festival of horror and cult, Grimmfest is about to unleash itself on Manchester and this year it is bigger than ever before. With a fringe programme in place, panels and signings with stars and authors and exciting premieres of new horror, sci-fi and fantasy including cutting edge shorts and the finest picks of international films, its set to be an unmissable few days. Here’s our lowdown of the best events and a short preview of things to come:
No mention of Grimmfest would be complete with some mention of one of the only screenings outside London of the cult classic The Wicker Man. With the newly restored ‘final cut’ hitting cinema screens, Grimmfest is hosting the Manchester premiere on Wednesday evening followed by a highly anticipated Q&A with director Robin Hardy. Not only that, but also screening on the preview night are black comedy Hansel and Gretel Get Baked and Manchester short film Radio Silence.
Thursday 3 October
Starring Arthur Darvill (Doctor Who, Broadchurch) and Hannah Tointon (The Inbetweeners) short film Crazy for You receives it’s northern premiere today. Director and Writer James Moran will also be in attendance to give his experiences of making the film. The main thrust of the day though will be the Fringe programme at the Lass O’Gowrie, with 7 shorts and films including the brilliantly titled Angst, Piss and Drid and an after party with Mokieoke giving you your chance to act out one of your favourite scenes from hundreds of choices, it’s the ideal curtain raiser to this years events.
Friday 4 October
One lucky attendee will be turned into a zombie by make-up expect Shaune Harrison as he offers a demonstration of make-up and prosthetic and SFX techniques. With Shanune having worked on films such as World War Z and Harry Potter, these are bound be popular and fascinating sessions. Then you can dive into a screening of Hellraiser I, II or III as voted for by you! Introduced by stars of the series including Nicholas Vince (Chatterer) and Barbie Wilde (Female Cenobite), Clive Barker fans will not be disappointed (unless you don’t vote for your favourite Hellraiser of course).
Saturday 5 October
Author Chris Fowler will be appearing for a Q&A at The Lass O’Gowrie (1.10pm) talking about his new book Film Freak, described as a “wonderful and touching” memoir of his attempt to break into the film industry. Shortly after you can catch The Human Race, described as a “a bleak and bloody portrait of humanity” in the vein of The Hunger Games and Stephen King’s The Long Walk. One of my personal choices would be Found, a troubled portrait of a geeky young boy marginalised by his peers and discovers his older brother is hiding some dark secrets. Also not to miss is the world exclusive preview of our very own Grimm Up North’s upcoming film White Settlers. Ending Saturday’s entertainment is another Manchester premiere in John Dies at the End, an adaptation of David Wong’s cult novel from the hands of Phantasm creator Don Coscarelli.
Sunday 6 October
The final day of Grimmfest is no less packed as Ida and Albin find that under the floorboards of their log cabin soul-stealing demons might just be real when Swedish horror Wither receives its premiere. Game of Thrones’ Alfie Allen and Emmerdale’s Dominic Brunt will be answering questions after screenings of their respective short movies The Body and Shellshocked. Grimmfest 2013 will conclude with anticipated sci-fi thriller The Machine that examines the ever increasingly blurring line between man and machine.
Don’t forget that throughout Grimmfest, Manchester’s finest fringe pub The Lass O’Gowrie will be giving 20% off food and drinks offers to all attendees of Grimmfest! The full schedule of events is available on the Grimmfest website with tickets available from there or The Dancehouse. There are also lots of competitions to enter over the festival including prizes such as The SFX Guide to Zombies, Stephen King’s latest novel Doctor Sleep and a signed quad poster for The Wicker Man: The Final Cut!