Today, Fantastic Fest is proud to announce the final wave of programming for the festival’s 16th edition, featuring the widest selection of weird and wonderful films gathered from across the globe to screen in Austin, TX, from September 23rd – 30th.
“Working on this final wave has been a pure joy for the programming team,” says Fantastic Fest Director of Programming Annick Mahnert. “With films coming from as far as Senegal, Latvia, Iran and Kazakhstan, and topics ranging from teenage assassins, circus freaks, serial killers and eerie children playing with dangerous powers, there is no doubt the program will delight the Fantastic Fest audience. 2021 is definitely a great year for Genre, and we’re really proud to have secured so many fantastic movies. We can’t wait to reunite with the audience at Alamo Drafthouse and to chat with you all about our lineup.”
Leading the studio titles in the announcement is the World Premiere of The Black Phone, penned by Scott Derrickson (Doctor Strange, Sinister franchise) and Austin screenwriter C.Robert Cargill (Doctor Strange, Sinister franchise), based on the short story by Joe Hill. Universal Pictures, Blumhouse, and Crooked Highway’s much-buzzed-about horror film reunites director Derrickson and four-time Oscar nominee Ethan Hawke (Sinister) in one of the most terrifying Blumhouse films ever.
Additional studio titles include the U.S. Premieres of IFC’s A Banquet, a chilling psychological horror where a mother’s love for her daughter is pushed to the limits, and The Innocents (Cannes – Un Certain Regard 2021), a stunning Norwegian drama about children with supernatural powers that will shake you to the core. World Premieres include Netflix’s There’s Someone Inside Your House, a bloody and highly entertaining slasher from director Patrick Brice (Creep), and SYFY’s Slumber Party Massacre, a contemporary and fun reimagining of the 1982 slasher cult classic directed by Fantastic Fest alumna Danishka Esterhazy (Level 16).
Last but not least, Fantastic Fest is thrilled and excited to close the festivities with the U.S. Premiere of Camille Griffin’s pitch-black comedy Silent Night, starring Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode, and Roman Griffin Davis (JoJo Rabbit). In sync with this year’s festival theme, you’re invited to witness the strangest holiday celebration of the year when a family gathers for a high-stakes Christmas dinner in Griffin’s directorial debut.
This final wave of Fantastic Fest films presents 37 feature film titles and 56 short film selections, showcasing world, US, and regional premieres and one pre-fest screening.
Fantastic Fest is excited to offer a special pre-fest presentation on September 22 of Utopia’s brand new 35th-anniversary restoration of Rad, with star Bill Allen in attendance. Arrive early and check out a radical pre-screening bike stunt outside the theater featuring the riders of Austin’s 512 Wheelie Crew, along with some surprise guests sponsored by Rambler Sparkling Water.
Alamo Drafthouse Cinema has partnered with GroundUp Music to present seven silent film classics reimagined by five different artists from the label. The festival will World Premiere the 1924 Soviet silent classic Aelita: Queen of Mars with a new score by Snarky Puppy’s Chris Bullock. Four additional film pairings will play on Fantastic Fest @HOME: House of Waters with the three shorts Menilmontant(1926), Le Voyage Dans La Lune (1902), and Ballet Mecanique (1923); PRD Mais with Waxworks (1924); Sirintip with The Lost World (1925); and Bob Lanzetti with Nosferatu (1922). All seven titles will then be available on Alamo On Demand. Select projects will be presented as live score events at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema’s soon-to-be-opened Manhattan theater later this year.
After a successful virtual event in 2020, the decision to go hybrid in 2021 was a no-brainer. Fantastic Fest @HOME will take place 9/30-10/11 on Alamo On Demand. Rev.com will be sponsoring our new accessibility initiative.
“The first step to creating access was offering a virtual option with an affordable badge price,” says Ahbra Perry, Head of Alamo On Demand. “With help from our friends at Rev.com, we’re going to be able to provide Closed Captions for the films and shorts playing virtually that can’t provide their own. That is a big step in the right direction and hopefully just the beginning.”
Over 30 films from the current festival lineup will be available virtually, including Alone With You, Luzifer, After Blue, and Baby Assasins. Badge holders will have access to films for 48-hour windows. Fantastic Fest is also excited to include a special curation of Fantastic Fest films from years past, many of them hard to find, that will be available for the full duration of the virtual festival, and a virtual closing night party hosted by Fantastic Fest @ Home sponsor Alter.
Kerri is a disabled assistant editor and news writer for BWT. She is motivated by her love of words, commas, comics, and all things geeky