The high-pitched horror of Ashley Thorpe’s The Screaming Skull will get an airing at top independent film festival Raindance, on Thursday, October 8, at the Apollo West End Cinema, Lower Regent street, London.
The film takes a nightmarish squint at the horror of heritage (amongst other things) and is part of programme 10 of the West End-based international film festival, which kicks off at 4.45pm.
It was made alongside Scayrecrow, the highwayman animation which paved the way for Ashley’s Carrion Films company to pick up the the 2009 Media Innovations Awards Best Independent Filmmaker trophy.
Ashley said: ‘In the light of all the wonderful exposure Scayrecrow has received, its eerie cousin has been somewhat relegated to the shadows a little.
“It’s a very different animal: its purposely slower paced, funereal almost and has that long POV sequence that borders on abstraction, so I’m personally thrilled that Screaming Skull is garnering interest and finding its audience. And its inclusion in Raindance this year is just beautiful.”
This is the first time that The Screaming Skull has been screened in an official capacity in the capital, following its enthusiastic reception when screened in Manhattan in June as part of the Fangoria Weekend of Horrors.
At the moment Ashley is finishing his UK Film Council Digital Shorts-funded The Hairy Hands.
He said: “When I was a kid growing up in Devon I was surrounded by ghost stories, local legends and folk songs about monsters, and I was lucky enough to be surrounded by people keen to tell them, especially to a wide-eyed young child.
“I was fed a constant diet of vengeful ghosts, highwaymen and deals with the devil in the Dartmoor fog.
“I subsequently grew up feeling that everyone else knew stories such as The Screaming Skull. But I soon realised that many of these stories, and the stories that the tellers had been told as children, were slipping away from us.
“As I travelled further afield, it became clear that many people had never heard of these tales at all.
“I’m now aiming to take these neglected aspects of English folklore and re-invent them for the 21st century audience as digital animations.”
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