Inspired by Halloween and an enduring pop-culture fascination with horror movies, we thought it would be fun to celebrate the spookiest of holidays in a slightly different, cinematic way. Here’s the deal: you’re a film location scout and your assignment is to explore the world in search of the creepiest place to film the next great horror flick. The diabolical backstory of the location will help determine the plot of the film. So get on board the Falcon Halloween express and get ready for the scary worldwide scouting expedition of 2013.
Location stop 1: Creepy castle in Crete
In a small village in southern Crete, there is a castle named Frangokastello, purported to be the location of an eerie yearly event in May: The procession of the Drosoulites. Translated in English as the “Dew Shadows”, the Drosoulites are the human-like shadows of a ghost army, the 300+ Greek soldiers killed in battle on this very site on May 17, 1828. So real are these apparitions that a WWII German patrol supposedly opened fire on the Dew Shadows. What if they fought back?
Film concept: 300 meets Army of Darkness.
Location stop 2: Haunted theatre in Melbourne
Located in the heart of Melbourne, the 130-year-old Princess Theatre is a perfect stage for a haunting musical drama about a particularly ghostly performer. In the early 19th century, Frederick Baker, a talented bass baritone opera star sang his last note on the Princess stage whilst performing Mephistopheles in Faust. Today actors report seeing the spectral thespian in shadowy backstage corners, and even taking bows in front of an empty auditorium! This theatrical Aussie ghost tale gives you an idea:
Film concept: Phantom of the Opera meets Crocodile Dundee.
Location stop 3 – China’s Great Big Scary Wall
The Great Wall, a marvel of old world engineering, is also known by generations of locals to be the scene of strange magic and restless spirits. The likely culprit is the angry spirit of General Xue from the Tang Dynasty, rumoured to be buried beneath the wall amid other secret tombs from which spring strange occurrences of all sorts – including eerie sounds and spectres of soldiers marching along the ancient ramparts. You can see it now: an entire ghost squadron patrolling The Great Wall in the epic production of…
Film concept: Crouching Tiger, Haunted Dragon
Location stop 4 – Doll Island, Mexico
In a swampy region south of Mexico City there is a place called the Island of Dolls, a small water-bound landscape where hundreds of dolls, or parts of dolls, hang from the trees and dangle on the sides of the island’s lone house. This was the former residence of a madman hermit, Don Julian Santana, who was haunted by the ghost of a young girl who allegedly drowned in the surrounding waters. Santana collected dolls to appease the restless spirit, but eventually met his own watery fate in the same shallow waters as the ghostly girl. Yikes. You might decide to change careers before you actually scout this location; nonetheless, a horror film is borne:
Y Tu Dolls Head Tambien
Once the shivers wear off, let us know which of these Halloween-inspired tales of the dark would make the best horror movie. Or feel free to let us know another location around the world that might contend for the title of World’s Creepiest Haunted Location…
Images by, Wikimedia Commons and Jonathon Corbet under a creative commons licence