Ghosts are heading to the famous Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colo., this week – and they’re bringing a few zombies, demons and other supernatural beings with them – to entertain amateur investigators and your favorite paranormal celebrities from Ghost Hunters, Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files and Psychic Kids.
In a first for “The Shining” hotel and a paranormal convention of this size, and sponsored by ParanormalPopCulture.com, Beyond Reality Events and TAPS ParaMagazine, three highly-anticipated paranormal films will be shown as part of a “Paranormal Pop Culture Film Fest” at The Stanley Hotel beginning Friday, May 6, 2011, and continuing through Sunday, May 8.
The festival films – Grave Encounters, Ghost From The Machine and The Night Shift – will be shown in conjunction with a weekend event that includes presentations and investigations of The Stanley with TAPS members and Ghost Hunters Britt Griffith, Amy Bruni and Adam Berry; Ben Hansen and Bill Murphy from Fact or Faked; psychic/medium Chip Coffey from Psychic Kids and Paranormal State; and Paranormal Pop Culture historian Aaron Sagers.
“I’m really excited to add another great element to our events,” says Griffith, one of the event organizers. “For a long time our guests and investigators have been able to have fun learning about the paranormal – and actually investigating with us – but now they’ll be able to check out cool new paranormal movies too.”
Each film included in the festival, shown previously in limited releases, has picked up good buzz.
Having only made its world premiere April 22 at the Tribeca Film Festival, the found footage film Grave Encounters, is a buzzed-about movie directed by “The Vicious Brothers.” When the crew of a ghost hunting show, led by arrogant investigator Lance Preston (Sean Rogerson) is locked down with its small team in the abandoned Collingwood psychiatric hospital (which is actually a real facility in British Columbia), they’re filming one another as they seek proof of hauntings from the institution’s dark past. But when the team begins to encounter activity, they learn too late that the building itself is alive and isn’t ready to let the investigators go. Often compared to the smash hit Paranormal Activity, Cinema Blend calls the horror a “scary and enjoyable experience,” while The L Magazine says Grave Encounters is a “f—ed up mindfreak.”
According to the official synopsis, Ghost From The Machine “explores the grey area between life and death and how science may be the bridge between the two.” When his parents die, Cody must raise his younger brother James. To cope with his loss, Cody explores the “science” of the supernatural. While ignoring his duties to his brother, he invents a machine to be a conduit to the afterlife. After befriending engineer Tom, who is dealing with his own grief, Cody’s machine becomes more successful than intended – and has opened a door to something that threatens the safety of the living. Written and directed by Matt Osterman, and starring Sasha Andreev, Variety calls the slow-build intellectual suspense film an “impressive feature debut” and and “reminiscent of The Sixth Sense in its subtle creepiness.”
Holding its world premiere at the “Paranormal Pop Culture Film Fest,” the adventure-comedy The Night Shift asks the question, “What if you could live forever?” Sounds cool, but things get tricky when you have to spend an eternity stuck guarding a cemetery with only a limbless corpse as a friend. Based on the Fighting Owl Films original short film, the feature revolves around night watchman Rue Morgan who spends the nights fighting zombies (and other supernatural scourges) and his days pining for graveyard dayshifter Claire. Fangoria called the short film a “very entertaining effort” with “light hearted good humor.” The star of The Night Shift, Erin Lilley, is also a contributor to ParanormalPopCulture.com.
“These are all great movies on their own,” says Britt Griffith. “They are going to be hits with regular movie audiences, so the fact that we get to show them together as part of our event – to a crowd of paranormal lovers, ghost hunters and fans of all these TV shows – that makes this all the cooler.”
The “Paranormal Pop Culture Film Fest” marks the first time paranormal investigative films have been shown as part of a paranormal investigative event, and the first time each movie has been shown together. An inspiration for Stephen King’s The Shining, the festival is also a first of its kind for the historic Stanley Hotel.
Tickets are still available for the weekend event and film festival at BeyondEvent.net/stanley.
Follow Paranormal Pop Culture expert Aaron Sagers daily on Twitter (@AaronSagers) and contact him through his site, www.paranormalpopculture.com, where he explores the entertainment of the unexplained