Leaving the Mutliplex behind

The Classic Horror Campaign

As well as screening classic light night Hammer Horror and some of the great movies in ‘chiller cinema’ of the past 50 years, The Classic Horror Campaign is on a mission. We caught up with Rick from CHC…

What is the idea behind the Classic Horror Campaign?
I started the campaign in order to persuade the BBC to bring back their iconic Horror Double Bill seasons and to raise awareness of the classic horror films that no longer seem to get an airing on network television (or even cable tv for that matter).

We don’t just tap into the older nostalgia market, we also want to bring these films to a brand new young audience also. These films are part of our cultural heritage and shouldn’t be just abandoned or forgotten about.

classic horror campaign
What memories do you have of late night BBC2 Horror films?
I remember when I was a kid that I’d watch some of the old black & white horror films with my family on Saturday nights then usually have to go to bed before the stronger, more gory film came on afterwards. Eventually I’d watch the films with my older sister as my parents had gone to bed and then finally I’d watch them all on my own while my sister was out with friends.

I’d meet with friends the next day and discuss the previous night’s double bill and get very excited about the following week’s line-up. I’d also avidly read about the movies being shown in various horror film books and magazines.

Would you be happy if they were brought back on say BBC 3 or 4?
Well it would be better than nothing and to be honest either channel could potentially be a good home for this kind of programming, just so long as they were shown in a good prime time Saturday evening slot and received a good amount of promotion and publicity from the BBC. I’d say broadcast the double bill from around 10pm to make it work.

If the campaign was successful what 2 films would you want to see on the first week?
Well we already screened my own personal dream Double Bill with our first screening in London and that was Night of the Demon (1957) followed by Vampire Circus (1972). I think those two films evoke the kind of atmosphere and feeling we’d want to achieve. And they were very popular choices amongst those questioned and those that attended.

classic-horror-campaignAre there plans to expand the events to more places in the future?
Well we’re off to Manchester for a whole weekend of screenings at the end of July and are also hosting a double bill at the Komedia in Brighton at the end of August. We have our regular once-a-month slot at the Roxy Bar & Screen in London but who knows?

We’ve had requests from people in various cities asking if we could organise something in their area so we’ll be looking into viable ideas, including a possible all-day Horror Film Festival based in Brighton.

Who is your favourite Christopher Lee or Peter Cushing?
Peter Cushing, because I felt he was the better actor and played more varied and sympathetic roles. Having said that, Christopher Lee is amazing and in my eyes will always be the best Dracula ever!

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