horror fest

Zombies will be able to enjoy the 2020 Telluride Horror Show “Shelter-in-Place Edition” from the comforts of their own graves, as organizers have announced the annual October festival will move online. (Courtesy photo)

As if the year 2020 wasn’t horrifying enough, this year’s edition of the Telluride Horror Show will be sure to provide some more scares, as Colorado’s first and longest-running genre film festival announced Monday it will proceed virtually.

The "Shelter-in-Place Edition" will take place online Oct. 15-18, though the dates may expand depending on the final lineup, according to a news release. The first wave of films, guests and pass sales will be announced as early as mid-September.

Horror Show head honcho Ted Wilson explained that moving the festival online was necessary, but still a bummer as the COVID-19 pandemic has forced festivals to adapt.

“Pulling the plug on our in-person festival was inevitable this year, but it's still a bit depressing,” he said. “We'll miss seeing everyone in October but we hope to keep the horror spirit alive the best we can and bring everyone together online, and this will give horror fans who haven't had the pleasure of traveling to Telluride yet the opportunity to get a taste of the festival.  And afterwards, we'll hope like hell that all the Telluride festivals can come roaring back in 2021, with a vengeance.”

He added that passes will be affordable, especially given the economic impact the coronavirus has had.

“We'll be keeping virtual passes affordable, in recognition of the economic downturn, and, of course, since it's not the full Telluride Horror Show experience,” Wilson explained, adding that the dates may be more flexible than in years past because the virtual platform, which will be the same as the one Mountainfilm used to move its annual offerings online, will allow organizers “to keep adding films until the last minute.” 

“Attendees will be able to buy passes and individual tickets throughout the actual festival weekend with ease.  We're using Eventive, the same platform Mountainfilm used in May for their virtual festival, so anyone who attended Mountainfilm during quarantine will be familiar with the platform. We've already got an incredible slate of short films, which are always crowd favorites at the Horror Show, and we'll have feature films, author readings, conversations and Q&As, and virtual special events as well. Most of the content will be available to viewers in the U.S.”

In its announcement, organizers said they’re committed to keeping “the spirit alive and stay connected with our diehard and dedicated horror fans.” “We'll greatly miss seeing all of you in person this year but we look forward to seeing you online,” the release reiterated. “In the meantime, start drawing up plans on how you can recreate the Telluride scene in your living room: Build some mountain props, stock up on Colorado microbrews, raise a pig for your own pig roast, find a volunteer to sweep up the popcorn in your living room between movies, stand in line outside your house between shows. … We know you'll make it fun!

“Thanks for your patience as we navigate 2020. We'll have an incredible slate of horror films & guests to share with you. This year's artwork is being drawn up as we speak (and, yes, we'll be printing up new T-shirts and posters so you can keep your collection going!). Our celebration of all things horror will go on and we hope you can join us.”