Fantastic Fest 2014 Wave 1 Films Revealed: Tusk, VHS Viral, Horsehead & More!


Fantastic Fest 2014This is going to be an incredible year for Fantastic Fest. It’s the 10th anniversary, also, the event is returning to the all-new Alamo South Lamar and Highball. If you recall, Fantast Fest took a break from that location because it was being totally rebuilt.

I’ll be heading down for the fest which takes place September 18-25th in Austin, Texas. Today, the first wave of films has been revealed.

Before I share those with you, check out that FF poster art by none other than Geoff Darrow.

Here are some details from the press release: Fantastic Fest is thrilled to open the fest with the US Premiere of Kevin Smith’s dark horror-comedy TUSK.  Smith will be in attendance for a red carpet gala screening and Q&A. Immediately following TUSK, the world premiere of ABCs OF DEATH 2 will unveil 26 devilishly diabolical tales at Fantastic Fest with multiple directors from the horror anthology sequel in attendance, including: Alejandro Brugués, Robert Boocheck, Lancelot Imasuen, E.L. Katz, Jerome Sable, Jen and Sylvia Soska, Jim Hosking, Larry Fessenden, Chris Nash, Steven Kostanski, and Julian Barrett.  

Following the premiere, guests are invited to attend ‘A Bodacious Celebration: 26 Ways to Party’ culminating in an epic food fight curated by Thu Tran of Food Party fame. “My personal challenge each year is making Fantastic Fest the best week of the year for like-minded genre film obsessive’s,” says festival founder Tim League.  “With the resonance of a round number anniversary, all reasonable fetters are discarded.  In 2014, we are taking no prisoners.  This festival is going to set new boundaries of decadence, destruction and debauchery.”

For its 10th anniversary, Fantastic Fest is also going all out with celebratory events and special programming, including two tent pole showstoppers. Legendary film critic and historian Leonard Maltin joins proceedings as head of the comedy jury and to play “MALTIN’S,” a game tournament of movie trivia twenty years in the making.

“My brother and I were obsessed with Leonard Maltin’s Movie Guide at an early age,” said MALTIN’S creator and festival alum Ant Timpson. “His reviews shaped our own language and view of film. How could we be even closer to our God? How could we become Leonard Maltin? MALTIN’S was the answer.”  

Complete rules and information on how to enter can be found at

Elevating the comedic quota of Fantastic Fest programming is the addition of Comedy Central’s breakout stand-up show “The Meltdown with Jonah & Kumail.” Hitting Austin for its first-ever Fantastic Fest performance, host comedians Jonah Ray and Kumail Nanjiani explained why they want to be a part of the festivities, “We want to watch films, drink, and make people laugh.” 

Wave 1 Films Include:

ABCs OF DEATH 2 Various, 2014 World Premiere, 125 minDirectors – Larry Fessenden, Marvin Kren, Todd Rohal, Jim Hosking, Julien Maury and, Alexandre Bustillo, Julian Gilbey, Soichi Umezawa, Lancelot Imasuen, Jerome Sable, Robert Boocheck, Aharon Keshales and Navot Papushado, Bill Plympton, Rodney Ascher, Erik Matti, Juan Moreno, Steven Kostanski, Alejandro Brugués, E.L. Katz, Julian Barratt, Hajime Ohata, Vincenzo Natali, Chris Nash, Jen and Sylvia Soska, Dennison Ramalho, Robert Morgan, Kristina Buozyte and Bruno SamperIn 2013 the craziest anthology ever created was released to an unsuspecting public. It immediately divided audiences. Some claimed it was a much-needed adrenaline shot to the heart of genre film, while others claimed it was reprehensible and the death knell of cinema as we know it.In 2014 it’s happening again. This time with an all-new line-up of international directors.

ALLELUIA France/Belgium, 2014US Premiere, 95 minDirector –  Fabrice Du Welz A lonely woman and a psychotic gigolo find love through murder in the latest film from the director of CALVAIRE and VINYAN.

THE BABADOOK Australia, 2014 Texas Premiere, 94 min Director –  Jennifer KentIn this impressive horror debut, Amelia thought her biggest problems were her son’s violent behavioral problems and her own depression. That was before something came knocking at the door…

BRO’s BEFORE HO’s Netherlands, 2013 US Premiere, 88 min Directors – Steffen Haars & Flip van der KuilA unashamedly offensive bromance from the killer comedy team behind NEW KIDS TURBO and NEW KIDS NITRO.

CLOSER TO GOD United States, 2014 Texas Premiere, 81 min Director – Billy Senese Dr. Victor Reed finds himself in the middle of an ethical, legal and religious storm after conducting the first successful human cloning in this fiercely intelligent indie thriller.

DANGER 5 – SERIES 2 Australia, 2014 World Premiere, 75 min Director – Dario Russo When Adolf Hitler surfaces posing as a 1980s high school student, there can be only one response! The crack team of Danger 5 are pressed back into service to eliminate the Nazi threat once and for all!

HIGH FIVE (RELOCOS Y REPASADOS) URUGUAY – BRASIL, 2013 World Premiere, 98 min Director – Manuel Facal It’s a stoner comedy from Uruguay. What else do you need to know?

HORSEHEAD (FIEVRE) France, 2014 World Premiere, 89 min Director – Romain Basset A stunning exploration of a young woman’s nightmares.

THE INCIDENT (EL INCIDENTE) Mexico, 2014 North American Premiere, 100 min Director – Isaac Ezban A cosmic event disrupts life on Earth in this sci-fi mind-bender.

JACKY IN THE KINGDOM OF WOMEN (JACKY AU ROYAUME DES FEMMES) France, 2013 Texas Premiere, 87 min Director – Riad Sattouf Women hold the power while men cower in this scathing dystopian satire starring Charlotte Gainsbourg.

KUNG FU ELLIOT Canada, 2014 Fantastic Fest Premiere, 88 min Director- Jaret Belliveau & Matthew Bauckman A hilarious and disturbing documentary about a man’s quest to become an international action star.

MALTIN’S GAME TOURNAMENT Created by Fantastic Fest alum and film producer, and self-described Leonard Maltin’s Movie Guide convert, Ant Timpson circa the early 90s, MALTIN’S is a movie lover’s version of game night favorite Balderdash.  Someone starts as “Maltin” and chooses a title from Leonard Maltin’s Movie Guide, a film that no one knows. The other players then all write down a fake synopsis based on the title.  Players attempt to trick each other into believing that their synopsis is the real one while trying to decipher the true Leonard Maltin’s Movie Guide synopsis.

LOCAL GOD (DIOS LOCAL) Uruguay, 2014World Premiere, 88 min Director – Gustavo Hernandez While filming music videos in an abandoned gold mine, a rock group is tormented by an evil spirit in this new film from the director of LA CASA MUDA.

THE MAN IN THE ORANGE JACKET Latvia/Estonia, 2014 US Premiere, 71 min Director – Aik Karapetian A laid-off harbor worker wages a private war on the rich in this surrealistic Latvian horror film.

THE MELTDOWN WITH JONAH & KUMAIL The Meltdown with Jonah and Kumail hails all the way from the back of a comic book store in Los Angeles, where not only has it been crowned one of the best standup shows in LA by LA Weekly, LA Times, and Hollywood Reporter, but it’s now a TV show! Comedy Central filmed eight documentary-style episodes of The Meltdown with Jonah and Kumail for a brand new type of standup show that airs Wednesday nights starting July 2014. Come see why this is the only existing live standup show to get its own TV show as hosts Jonah Ray and Kumail Nanjiani charm your pants off and welcome some very special guests!

NORWAY Greece, 2014 US Premiere, 74 min Director – Yiannis Veslemes A vampire dances his way through ’80s era Athens in this fantastic film from the production team behind DOGTOOTH.

STILL LIFE (NATURALEZA MUERTA) Argentina, 2014 North American Premiere, 97 min Director – Gabriel Grieco Meat is murder in this brutal Argentinian slasher with an animal rights edge.

TOMBVILLE Belgium, 2014 North American Premiere, 94 min Director – Nikolas List Young David awakens battered and disoriented on the edge of town, knowing only one thing: He wants to get away. But no matter what he tries, he’s always led back to the same dark, disturbing place. Welcome to Tombville.

TOMMY (TommyMer) Sweden, 2014 North American Premiere, 95 min Director – Tarik Saleh Tommy is coming home, or at least that’s what his wife Estelle desperately needs people to believe when she returns after a year in exile. And if he doesn’t get what’s his, there’s going to be hell to pay.

TUSK United States, 2013 US Premiere, 102 min Director – Kevin Smith From the singular mind of writer/director and podcaster Kevin Smith, and conceived from one of Smith’s own Smodcast’s, TUSK is a story unlike anything that has ever been committed to screen before. A tale that is equal parts hilarious and horrifying, TUSK will stay with you long after the credits roll.  Starring: Justin Long, Michael Parks, Genesis Rodriguez, and Haley Joel Osment

V/H/S VIRAL US, 2014 US Premiere, 98 min Directors – Marcel Sarmiento, Gregg Bishop, Nacho Vigalondo, Justin Benson & Aaron MoorheadFantastic Fest alumni Nacho Vigalondo & Marcel Sarmiento join several other genre filmmaking greats in this 3rd installment of the twisted found footage horror anthology franchise.

WYRMWOOD Australia, 2014 World Premiere, 92 min Director – Kiah Roache-Turner The undead rise again in this raucous feature debut from Australia’s Roache-Turner Brothers, who deliver one of the most balls-out, gonzo and just plain fun entries into the zombie canon in years.

Look for more film & event programming announcements for Fantastic Fest in the weeks ahead.