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Salem Horror Fest Returns With Surprise Premieres and Encores This Weekend

Friday, October 30, 2020 | Events

After weeks of tourist hordes, the city of Salem has transformed from Mayor Vaughn in Jaws to the ominous kook in Friday the 13th seemingly overnight. The new message is clear: “The streets are closed. Turn back now.” But that won’t stop Salem Horror Fest from one last picture show at the now-defunct CinemaSalem.

Starting Friday, October 30 through Sunday, November 1, festival director K Lynch will sneak into an empty theater to stream over 24 hours of virtual programming with premieres of new anthology film Bad Candy and the horror-comedy Murder Bury Win. “Growing up, I lived for the dead and longed for a community of like minds. It feels like I’m finally coming home. Thanks for bringing me into the family,” director Michael Lovan said in a statement.

A selection of festival favorites will also broadcast live and be presented on the big screen as tribute to the filmmakers. “This year has been a nightmare. And depending on how the election goes, things could get even scarier. The closing of CinemaSalem has been a devastating loss for the community. This is our way of keeping the flame alive and assuring everyone that cinema is undead,” said festival director K Lynch.

In partnership with The Satanic Temple TV, the festival will showcase a collection of presentations such as The Fight Against Witch Hunters and Satanic Feminism. Other programs include silent films with new musical scores, trivia game show, drag performances, and an exclusive interview with the directors of the found footage Shudder hit, Host. All programs are online-exclusive. The cinema is not open to the public.

Weekend access to the Halloween Stream is available for $13. Additional programs are available for rent and purchase. Further details can be found at

Rocco T. Thompson
Rocco is a Rondo-nominated film journalist and avid devotee of all things weird and outrageous. He penned the cover story for Rue Morgue's landmark July/Aug 2019 "Queer Fear" Special Issue, and is an associate producer on In Search of Darkness: Part III, the latest installment in CreatorVC's popular 1980s horror documentary series.