One of the most successful genres in the world, India, has a great following. India is currently waking up to a whole new world – that of web series and short films. Someone with a great vision came up with a film festival that would celebrate both these concepts – short films and horror films.
The first ever horror short film festival in India kicked off last afternoon. The Sixth Sense Horror Film Fest program was in the making for quite some time. It was the brainchild of Sixth Sense, a company based in Mumbai.
Jeffrey Reddick, the writer behind the world’s biggest money making horror franchise, ‘Final Destination’ was in India to inaugurate the festival. Dressed in what would be a stifling suit given the weather, we asked him how’s the Mumbai weather for him. He replied:
“I have lived in Kentucky, New York and LA all my life, so I have seen such kind of weather.”
Jeffrey has been saying that he wants to know more about the Indian Horror film scene. The Digital Hash introduced him to Bollywood horror by gifting him a DVD of some of the iconic Bollywood horror films. We asked him his idea of the films from the DVD cover. He said
“The Indian Bollywood horror films look much more colourful that what we see in Hollywood. It’s got a richer color scheme. I’m very interested in seeing these films.”
We then proceeded to have a casual chat with Jeffrey at the venue, you can watch the full video below. We asked him about how it felt to be in India. He said
“I am quite excited to be here. It’s the first Horror fest in India, it’s an honour to be here.”
We also asked him why he decided to visit India. He said
“I am a huge horror fan. Every time I see horror getting respect and recognition in foreign countries, it is really exciting for me. I am trying to immerse myself in the horror culture in India and just very excited to be kicking off the first Horror film festival in India.”
Jeffrey is a panel member of the judges. We asked him his take on the films made by the Indian film-makers in the film festival.
“It’s a different style, that I love. I am very excited to see the different aesthetic here. Things are much more colourful. It’s a completely different type of film-making. That’s what I love about horror filmmaking. Some of my favourite stuff is from foreign countries. People bring their own experiences into making a film, that’s what makes it all the more exciting.”
We also asked him what was his take on more and more film-makers taking the short film route. He replied
“I think short films are a great training ground for short film-makers. You still have to make the film. You need to get the story, you need to get the crew together.”
“It is a great way for film-makers to show their talent, without getting into the process of making a 90 minute movie. I think it also allows you to tell a different story.”
“You have to tell a story in 10 minutes, you don’t have an hour and a half. I think it’s the same with filmmakers. When you don’t have a big budget, you have to come with a creative ways to come around that, it’s the same thing with the format.”
The evening itself was a mixture. Horror has a big following in India, but only a handful of people made it to the Auditorium at Ravindra Natya Mandir in Prabhadevi. Maybe it was the sweltering heat that kept people away. But those who did were in for some good entertainment.
Yesterday was the first viewing of the selection of the films, a mixture of films by Indian and foreign film-makers. Some films had good production qualities while others suffered because they are shot on a cell phone.
That didn’t stop the audience from a great experience though. A particular film that had a mute woman as the protagonist caught in the middle of a zombie apocalypse had the audience doing, “Oohs” and “Aahs”.
The screenings are free and went on till 9 in the evening. So, if you are in for some quality horror entertainment, head out to Ravindra Natya Mandir.