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Popcorn Frights Film Fest Adds Salute To Homegrown Florida Horror

Popcorn Frights.com
"Pandemonium" directed by Luis Mendez will be one of the offerings during Popcorn Frights Film Festival's new series featuring work by Florida-based filmmakers.

With a landscape boasting sun, fun, sand and surf, Florida is hardly the land of Edgar Allen Poe-ish gothic horror, right?

Don’t you believe it.

How about that spooky old Riddle House in West Palm Beach? And you don’t REALLY mean to tell us that those tales of the Bigfoot-like “skunk ape” in the Everglades didn’t give you the creeps as a kid.

This year, the 3rd edition of South Florida’s only horror movie festival, Popcorn Frights, is celebrating Florida’s native scariness with a new category: “Homegrown: 100% Pure Fresh Squeezed Florida Horror.”

Popcorn Frights co-founder and co-director Igor Shteyrenberg says the festival promises to deliver the “coolest, most twisted, beautiful, mind-bending, horrifying, and hilarious films to South Florida audiences.” 

The “Homegrown” series is dedicated to reinvigorating the audience's engagement with the state’s homegrown talent. “This platform is designed to be a springboard for new filmmakers from Florida,” says Shteyrenberg.

Among the offerings is a short film set and shot in Key West. “Buzzcut” follows the travails of a young woman who runs headlong into a zombie apocalypse while searching for a stylist to repair her bad haircut.

South Florida-based filmmakers Jonathon Rhoads and Mike Marrero co-directed the movie.

Marrero says the sight of the zombie makeup and gory special effects during the shoot stopped a few mild-mannered Key West denizens and visitors dead in their tracks.

“Our lead actor just running around, completely covered in blood,” he recounts with a laugh. “I think we might have ruined a tour or two.”

Popcorn Frights Film Festival
August 11 to August 17
O Cinema Wynwood
90 NW 29th St., Miami