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Killer Santas, carrot-wielding maniacs, a werewolf musical and David Tennant as a vampire hunter – it can only be Film4 FrightFest, the UK’s premiere event for horror fans, which returns to the Empire Cinema in London’s Leicester Square from Thursday 25 August to Monday 29 August.

Opening the festival will be the Guillermo del Toro produced Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark, starring Katie Holmes and Guy Pearce. The Australian-made horror, based on the 1973 US TV movie of the same name, explores a demonic tooth fairy myth and is directed by comic book artist Troy Nixey.


 Closing FrightFest is the European premiere of the British survival shocker A Lonely Place To Die, starring Melissa George (another Aussie).

This year’s line-up of home grown talent features a record 10 British titles, including Ben Wheatley’s brutal chiller Kill List, Cristian Solimeno’s psychological twister The Glass Man, The Wicker Tree (Robert Hardy’s official companion piece to The Wicker Man) and cyber-space shocker Panic Button. There’s also Alex Chandon’s gore-soaked Inbred, Susan Jacobson’s sinister thriller The Holding, and the trippy terror Guinea Pigs, directed by Ian Clarke.

From America comes zombie comedy Deadheads, slasher movie killer horror Detention, Lucky McKee’s The Woman, Ti West’s The Innkeepers (I loved his House of the Devil last year) and the Adam Green/Joe Lynch anthology Chillerama. Plus, FrightFesters will be one of the first audiences in the world to see the blockbusters Final Destination 5 3D (click here for the latest trailer) and Fright Night 3D, starring Colin Farrell and David Tennant.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alF7parJG_o&fs=1

From Europe comes the killer Santa Dutch sensation Saint and the German subterranean horror Urban Explorer, while two countries who have never made a horror film before are represented here for the first time with Switzerland’s Sennentuntschi: Curse of the Alps and Israel’s Rabies.

Festival and day passes are on sale now, while tickets for individual films go on sale from Monday 1 August. Bookings: call 08 714 714 714 or  visit the Empire Cinema website