Interview: Robert J. Massetti: “Freakshow Horror Film Festival 2017” By Eileen Shapiro

The 12th annual “Freakshow Horror Film Festival 2017 will be taking place beginning on Friday, October 13th through Sunday October 15th. Horror and Syfy fans will be treated to the very best in international and indie horror films. There will also be a special viewing to open up the festival of “Friday The 13th”, on Friday October 13th.

I spoke with founder and producer Robert Massetti, a horror film fanatic himself about the festival and what can be expected. The scary phenomena will be held at: The Premier Cinema, 14  Fashion Square Mall, 3201 East Colonial Drive, Orlando Florida, 32893. For tickets: 

Tell me a little about the festival, as a matter of fact, tell me everything about the festival.

The Freakshow Festival came about on 2006. Basically I had the idea that I wanted to run a film festival. At the time we were working with this horror convention called, “Spooky Empire”. I ran it past the guy who runs it, and he said “Yeah, start a film festival”. I started it with a tiny little section of the convention just starting out. I started to research film festivals, I tried to make it grow, and by the time 2009 rolled around, we were getting too big for the convention. We were showing it in a small area of the convention and the environment there makes it hard to watch films because of noise. We played the films, and someone is doing things next door, and was really loud. Anyway, my vision for the festival was always to be in a movie theater. So we had the opportunity to do that in 2010. So we moved out of the convention and tried it on our own. The Premier Cinemas were interested in us, and they took us in, and this will be our second year with them. Now that we are in an actual movie theater, we can attract bigger films. Before it was kind of hard to attract films because we weren’t in that environment. That’s the basic overview.

How would one get their film into your film festival?

Basically what we show is independent horror films which means, these films were produced outside the Hollywood system. Usually those films are financed by film makers themselves, or outside financing. Basically we advertise to filmmakers and then they submit their film, we look at the films, and the judging committee decides whether or not these films should be shown at the festival. 

How many films do you show a day?

It depends on the day but in total we’ll be showing 31 films, and that includes shorts and feature films. We have eight features this year and the rest are short films.

You cater to specific fans, do you have a favorite film that’s going to be shown?

There’s a film playing there called “Hostile”. It’s a film that was made in France. It’s an interesting horror/scyfy film. It’s got a couple of stars in it, not big stars, and it’s a different type of horror film than I’ve seen. I’ve seen a lot. It was refreshing to see this film. It looked like it was very polished, the cinematography is great, and it’s got an interesting story to it. It’s not your typical horror film. It has cool monsters in it. The make up affects are really good. 

What kind of work goes in to producing a horror festival? Do you have to work on it the entire year?

We work on it all year. The majority of it is just promotion and looking at films. This year we got over 300 films. We have a committee that looks at the films but I look at them as well. So it’s looking at the films, watching movies, and their are independent films that have a lot of buzz behind them that we look at. Also what I wanted to mention, the festival is on Friday the 13th. We managed to get the original 1980, “Friday The 13th” movie. We will be opening the festival with that original movie. This is the first time we’ve done anything like that where we’ve gotten a special screening of an older horror film. 

It’s the perfect day.

It sure is. I’ve never seen the film on the big screen so this one is going to be a treat for me.

Do you have a favorite horror film of all time?

I’m a big fan of Alfred Hitchcock, so “Psycho” is one of them. My big influence is John Carpenters, “Halloween”. That has always been one of my favorites, and I watch it every year on Halloween. It’s kind of a tradition. Can’t get enough of the film. The film is basically just all atmosphere, no blood in it or anything like that. That’s what I really like about that horror film. It has a great atmosphere and you see the villain in the shadows, and he’s always creeping behind. That to me as a horror film.

Have you seen “It”?

I have. I really liked that film. 

Was it really scary?

 It was. The actor that played “Pennywise” was fantastic. That’s what made the film. He was both scary and funny at the same time. That film was fun. It had a lot of humor in it, and then it was scary. They kind of mixed it up with some comedy and some horror in it too. 

 This festival is a great opportunity for those who like to be scared!

For Tickets or More Info :
Follow on Twitter @FreakShowHorror

Please share this page!