PopHorror had the pleasure of attending the Warner Bros. Studio’s Horror Made Here: Festival of Frights press preview this week. Fan favorites hijacked Warner Bros’ iconic backlot, transforming it into a Halloween celebration. Fans’ biggest fears from The Conjuring universe, The Exorcist, Camp Crystal Lake and The DC Universe, Batman: Arkham Asylum come to life. Possessed nuns, scary clowns, Jason Voorhees, super villains and other characters rub elbows with attendees as they lurked in the crowds. The carnival atmosphere is lit with a string of lights that illuminated an orange glow from above. It was all tied together with live entertainment from DJ Ricky Rocks who brought the energy and set the tone for the event.
Festival of Frights Mazes
Face your fears as you make your way through the Neibolt Street house and try to escape Pennywise the Dancing Clown. Visitors will be under the Joker’s discretion as acting judge of Arkham Asylum as you see if you can find your way through the deranged institute. Get a peek into the lives of investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, all while escaping the Annabelle’s antics. Tread cautiously as The Nun is hiding in the shadows, waiting to pounce at any given moment. Get an amazing 4D experience of terrifying scenes from The Exorcist, located inside the backlot church. Take a detour through the backlot to see filming locations from some of your favorite movies and television shows. At the end, you’ve arrived at Camp Crystal Lake, where both Jason Voorhees and Freddy Krueger frolic through the woods, wreaking havoc on camp counselors. Can you dodge all the threats from the woods and within the cabins?
When compared to other Halloween haunts, these mazes are a bit minimal in duration. This doesn’t detract from the performances from the scare actors, special effects makeup, or structure throughout. The scare actors did not break character and brought on a major creep factor to the forefront, the nuns especially. The details and story lines were spot on and greatly appreciated. The jumps and scares were definitely present and had me craving for more.
Festival of Frights Food and Beverages
The Fangtasia Bar will quench your thirst with a variety of specialty drinks. The most popular one on the menu is a cocktail served in Blood Bags, very suiting. If you don’t see something you recognize, ask the bartender for something that’s more to your liking. They were very accommodating and friendly. Beer, soda, and water are other options. The Craven Café served an assortment of food: cheeseburgers, fries, chicken tenders, pizza, and snacks. There were a few novelty sweets to purchase there as well. Throughout the venue layout are stands selling other items to ensure all your cravings were satisfied.
Festival of Frights will also offer a series of attractions and activities for horror loving fans, including:
- Devil’s Drop Tower: Adventurous visitors will have the opportunity to take the 90-foot plunge into the air for the scream of their lives.
- Stage 48: Script to Scream: Enter the world of Tim Burton and see authentic props and costumes from his iconic movies Sweeney Todd, The Corpse Bride, Mars Attacks! and for the first time ever on display at Warner Bros., original props from the Halloween classic, Beetlejuice. Stage 48: Script to Scream not only featured work by Tim Burton, it also included a piece from the set of Friends, costumes, set props, and more from infamous movies that won the hearts of fans around the world.
- Horror Makeup Demonstrations: Learn how makeup artists bring terrifying characters to life with our special Horror Made Here SFX makeup demonstrations throughout the night.
- The Lost Boys Arcade: Play iconic games in the retro Lost Boys-themed arcade. Games include titles like Ms. Pac-Man, Tetris, Mario Bros, Space Invaders and Terminator 2 Pinball.
- Horror Made Here Night Tour: Board a quick nighttime tour through the Warner Bros.’ backlot for a guided exploration behind the scenes of beloved titles in horror entertainment, including iconic filming locations like New York Street, where House of Wax was shot.
Festival of Frights is in its third year, and although it may be small, there is a lot of potential horror brewing. The creative team behind the madness is still ironing out the fine details and relying on customer feedback to determine exactly how far they should go, and then push a little farther. The thrills and experiences are invigorating and make for a good time. We definitely recommend it for any horror fan that welcomes good scares and some good times.
Festival of Frights is now open! For more information check out the website for more details.