Austin may be best known for music, but this time each year, movies of the macabre take over the city in a festival called the biggest of its kind for fans of shock and horror.
This year is no exception, as Fantastic Fest returns for its 18th year, Sept. 21-28. And between the screenings, Austin’s bracing itself for some wild parties, podcast recordings and other macabre visitations to mark the occasion.
Festival director Lisa Dreyer joined the Standard with a look at the growth of the genre film festival, horror’s staying power, some festival picks and more. Listen to our Q&A above or read our transcript with more on the movies below.
This transcript has been edited slightly for clarity and concision.
Texas Standard: How do you describe this festival for folks who are unfamiliar? Because it seems like “genre” is doing a lot of heavy lifting here.
Lisa Dreyer: I feel like you summed it up perfectly. We are the largest genre film festival in the United States. We are powered by the Alamo Drafthouse. And basically by genre, we mean anything from horror movies, sci fi, fantasy, science fiction, black comedy – anything that’s really kind of weird, wild and cutting edge.