2021 Lineup Announcement​

For its second edition, NIGHTSTREAM is once again headlined by a slate of impressive virtual events, with notable guests including David Lowery on his epic fantasy THE GREEN KNIGHT, Akela Cooper, writer of the James Wan directed MALIGNANT, to discuss the recent smash horror hit, and Creepshow showrunner Greg Nicotero, who will dive into the show’s newest season in a Shudder presented conversation. The fest will also feature a panel event to precede the launch of Shudder’s upcoming HORROR NOIRE anthology next month, with segment writers Tananarive Due and Steven Barnes, and invite back drag superstar Peaches Christ to celebrate the iconic Chucky franchise with its creator Don Mancini, as well as returns of popular events presented by The Future of Film Is Female and the Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies.

Industry mavericks Divide/Conquer (FREAKY, CAM) will host a panel on indie filmmaking exclusive for NIGHTSTREAM, while celebrated collectives Museum Of Home Video and Racer Trash will stream special installments. 

The upcoming edition will screen 31 feature films as well as four short blocks, presented by Gunpowder & Sky’s horror brand, ALTER and sci-fi brand, DUST, with viewing windows to be both on-demand and scheduled. Among the line-up, highlights include the World Premieres of Jefferson Moneo’s COSMIC DAWN, starring Camille Rowe and Emmanuelle Chriqui, and Scott Friend’s feature debut TO THE MOON, featuring Will Brill, as well as the Virtual Premiere of Scott Barber’s THIS IS GWAR documentary, along with a virtual tour of their workshop, and a special side-bar of rare folk-horror films curated by Kier-La Janisse in the NIGHTSTREAM Retro slate. 

Feature Films

After Blue (Dirty Paradise)

France | 2021 | 130 Min. | Bertrand Mandico

On a strange planet habitable only by women, a teen and her mother embark on a fantastical journey in pursuit of a murderous criminal named Kate Bush in an effort to reverse their exile. An Altered Innocence Release

Alien on Stage

UK | 2021 | 83 Min | Danielle Kummer, Lucy Haley

Bus drivers from southwest England attempt a most ambitious stage adaptation of Alien in this overwhelmingly charming, hilarious and inspiring documentary.

All My Friends Hate Me

UK | 2021 | 93 Min | Andrew Gaynord

A weekend of reconnecting with old friends devolves into a barrage of existential dread and paranoia for one unlucky chap in this dark and hilarious cringe-fest. A Super Ltd Release.

Agnes

United States | 2021 | 93 Min | Mickey Reece

What should be a routine exorcism turns into a violent struggle and a crisis of faith for a priest, his apprentice and the other nuns in the convent  in the latest from director NIGHTSTREAM alum Mickey Reece. A Magnet Release.

Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes

Japan | 2021 | 70 Min | Junta Yamaguchi

A cafe owner discovers a time paradox in this mind-blowing, sci-fi one-take adventure from Japan shot on an iPhone. An Indiecan release.

Bloody Oranges

France | 2021 | 100 Min | Jean-Christophe Meurisse

A retired couple’s survival depends on a dance competition while a crooked politician is accused of tax fraud and a teenager turns the tables on a crazed pervert in this surreal, twisted, and socially charged explosion.

Cannon Arm and the Arcade Quest

Denmark | 2021 | 97 Min | Mads Hedegaard

A man of few words, Kim Cannon Arm finds his outlet in the unforgiving 1983 Konami game Gyruss, for which he’s known for playing 49 hours straight with one coin. At 55 years old, he decides to break his own record and go on the quest for the untouchable 100 hours.

Code Name: Nagasaki

Norway | 2021 | 70 Min | Fredrik Hana

When he was only five, Marius’ mother unexpectedly left his family to return to Japan and broke off all contact. Now twenty years later, he and his best friend Fredrik document their soulful search for her using the magic of genre storytelling.

Cosmic Dawn

World Premiere
Canada | 2021 | 98 Min | Jefferson Moneo

A young woman  must choose how far into a bizarre UFO cult she’s willing to go in order to solve the mystery of her mother’s disappearance. A Cranked Up Films Release.

Hellbender

United States | 2021 | 82 Min | Toby Poser, Zelda Adams, and John Adams

Sheltered by her mom from the outside world, Izzy’s daily routine consists of chores and jam sessions for their mother-daughter rock band. As Izzy grows up and starts to break free, her interactions with strangers send her hurtling down a dark path her mom was trying desperately to protect her from. A Shudder Release.

King Car

Brazil | 2021 | 99 Min | Renata Pinheiro

Against joining his family’s taxi business, Ninho has a change of heart when he realizes that his aspirations for a greener future for Brazil might be compatible with this line of work by way of his natural gift—he can communicate with cars. A Dark Star Pictures Release

Landlocked

Virtual Premiere
United States | 2021 | 75 Min | Paul Owens

A video camera turns into a looking glass to the past in this lo-fi yet highly ambitious head-turner, following a young man who gets to reconnect with his family’s history through old, strangely immersive home movies.

Mad God

United States | 2021 | 83 Min | Phil Tippett

30 years in the making, SFX creature-maestro Phil Tippett’s animated experimental nightmare is ready to invade your dreams.

Mother Schmuckers

Belgium | 2021 | 70 Min | Harpo Guit and Lenny Guit

A pair of dim-witted brothers have 24 hours to rescue their mother’s lost dog in this extreme gross-out comedy.

Name Above Title

Portugal | 2021 | 59 Min | Carlos Conceição

Accidental stardom strikes a serial killer when bystanders witness him kiss a dying woman on the street and interpret the scene as the ultimate act of kindness.

Poser

United States | 2021 | 87 Min | Ori Sergev and Noah Dixon

The Columbus, Ohio music scene serves as a killer backdrop for this uber-cool thriller about a podcaster who becomes obsessed with a popular local musician. An Oscilloscope Laboratories Release.

Satoshi Kon: The Illusionist

France | 2021 | 81min | Pascal-Alex Vincent

The late Satoshi Kon, master Japanese animator of films such as Perfect Blue and Paprika, is paid tribute by a collection of his closest collaborators and world-renowned directors influenced by his magnificent body of work.

Shapeless

United States | 2021 | 88 Min | Samantha Aldana

A young musician threatens her mental health and physical safety by keeping her eating disorder a secret in this visceral, Cronenbergian thriller.

Stanleyville

Canada | 2021 | 88 Min | Maxwell McCabe-Lokos

Locked inside a large room, five eccentric strangers take on a series of bizarre challenges in what could be described as “if Quentin Dupieux remixed Sartre’s No Exit.” An Oscilloscope Laboratories Release.

The Greenhouse

UK | 2021 | 88 Min | Thomas Wilson-White

A woman in mourning over her late mother discovers a way to travel back in time and relive her happiest memories, but that joy comes at a dangerous cost in this inventive and emotionally charged sci-fi drama.

The Taking

United States | 2021 | 76 Min | Alexandre O. Philippe

From the stunning visuals of Monument Valley to the consolidation of the American mythos, Alexandre O’Philippe brilliantly deconstructs the American western to better explain the establishment of social myths in America.

This is GWAR

Virtual Premiere
United States | 2021 | 110 Min | Scott Barber

You think you know GWAR? Well, THIS IS GWAR! Much more than a fanboy documentary, prepare to get closer than ever before to the people behind the legendary band and witness their inspirational journey to bloody success!

To the Moon

World Premiere
United States | 2021 | 82 Min | Scott Friend 

A married couple’s peaceful retreat off-the-grid is disturbed by the arrival of a family member whose unpredictably bizarre antics wreak psychological havoc on their minds.

We're All Going to the World's Fair

United States | 2021 | 86 Min | Jane Schoenbrun

Escaping into an elaborate online game, a shy teenager begins to lose her grip on reality in this uniquely empathetic and unsettling genre hybrid. A Utopia Distribution release.

Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched: A History of Folk Horror

United States | 2021 | 192 Min | Kier-La Janisse

Author, film programmer, horror scholar, and all-around cinematic polymath Kier-La Janisse presents the  authoritative deep dive documentary on folk horror. A Severin Films Release.

NIGHTSTREAM Retro

Boardinghouse

Restoration World Premiere United States | 1982 | 88 Min | John Wintergate

A bizzaro and hallucinogenic gore fest following Jim (played by writer/director John Wintergate), a psychic playboy who rents out an old L.A. boardinghouse— once the site of gruesome murders, to a group of “beautiful women with no ties”.

Jack Be Nimble

Restoration World Premiere
New Zealand | 1993 | 96 Min | Garth Maxwell

Estranged twins Jack and Dora are attempting to re-unite, much to the chagrin of their evil stepsisters in this cult-classic gothic fairy tale. An Altered Innocence Release.

NIGHTSTREAM is proud to present a quartet of rare folk-horror films in our retro program, curated and preluded with an extended intro by filmmaker, writer, programmer, and editor Kier-La Janisse (WOODLANDS DARK AND DAYS BEWITCHED). All films in the folk-horror sidebar are Severin Releases.

Alison's Birthday

Australia | 1981 | 97 Min | Ian Coughlan

19-year-old Alison attends her ill-fated birthday party and finds herself at the center of an ancient family curse. Australian folk-horror at its best, available for the first time since its VHS release.

Clearcut

Russia | 1991 | 98 Min | Ryszard Bugajski

A peaceful lawyer becomes entangled in criminal acts following his involvement with Indigenous activists, including one man who seeks more lethal measures to protect their land from a logging company.

Eyes of Fire

4K Restoration
United States | 1983 | 86 Min | Avery Crousne

An adulterous preacher, banished from a small British colony, leads his motley crew of followers through an enchanted forest unaware of the heart of darkness they have wandered into.

Lake of the Dead

Norway | 1958 | 76 Min | Kåre Bergstrøm

A group of friends stay at a remote cabin where it is said that a man killed his sister and her lover and then drowned himself in the lake—and anyone who stays in the cabin will be driven to the same fate.

Podcasts, Panels, and Conversations

Aughtsterion Podcast

Like the Criterion Collection⁠— but more gay and more fun, Aughtsterion chronicles and canonizes the horror films released around the turn of the new millennium. For this special NIGHTSTREAM edition, hosts Jordan Crucchiola and Sam Wineman will thoroughly and enthusiastically explain why you were probably wrong about SCREAM 4.

A Celebration of Chucky with Don Mancini and Peaches Christ

With the upcoming expansion of the titular character to the small screen,  NIGHTSTREAM couldn’t imagine a better way to honor Don Mancini’s illustrious film career than a bloody glamorous celebration of the beloved franchise led by drag superstar and self-proclaimed cult leader Peaches Christ.

A Celebration of HORROR NOIRE Presented By Shudder

A Shudder Original, HORROR NOIRE showcases stories of Black horror from Black directors and screenwriters, expanding on the legacy of Black genre filmmaking that was explored in the 2019 documentary HORROR NOIRE: A HISTORY OF BLACK HORROR. The anthology will feature six stories presented together as a two-hour film, and will be available on Shudder on October 28. Join celebrated writers Tananarive Due and Steven Barnes, who co-wrote two of the segments, for an in-depth conversation on their bodies of work, their collaboration and the importance of sharing these essential stories in the horror genre. Moderated by arts curator, film programmer, critic, and Tony Todd fan Sarah-Tai Black.

A Conversation With CREEPSHOW Showrunner Greg Nicotero and Writer Mattie Do

Iconic master of all things horror makeup and special effects, Greg Nicotero has conjured some of the greatest moments (and monsters) in genre film history. Having brought back to life the beloved 80s cult series Creepshow, currently in its 3rd season on Shudder, one of the most talented minds in the business joins us along with filmmaker Mattie Do, who co-wrote the season finale, for a deep-dive into their creative journeys to introduce new fans to some of their favorite horror stories, creatures, and cinematic icons. Moderated by Clark Collis (Entertainment Weekly).

A Conversation with THE GREEN KNIGHT Filmmaker David Lowery

Following a year of lockdown, filmmaker David Lowery unveiled THE GREEN KNIGHT, a staggering cinematic feast onto silver screens at a time when our collective audiences needed it most. Join the illustrious writer and director for a candid look back through the process of making his medieval fantasia. Moderated by film critic Amy Nicholson.

A Conversation with MALIGNANT Writer Akela Cooper

Skyrocketing to the status of instant cult classic, MALIGNANT ignited immediate and extreme reaction when it was unleashed to the world only this past month. Join the film’s screenwriter Akela Cooper for an in-depth conversation about the script’s origins, her storytelling inspirations and process, and the art and craft of writing for genre film and television. Moderated by Jen Yamato (L.A. Times).

The Future of Film Is Female Presented by Daily Dead

The Future of Film is Female presents a panel discussion about the future of horror films with women and non-binary filmmakers who are making the most exciting new work in the genre. Part of The FOFIF’S ongoing conversation series focused on new voices in the horror space in order to unpack how their perspective seeks to evolve, elevate and liberate genre films and beyond. Panelists include: A.K. Espada (THE IS OUR HOME), Samantha Aldana (SHAPELESS), Kate Robertson (Liverpool University Press’ Devil’s Advocates: Trouble Every Day), Ashlee Blackwell (Graveyard Shift Sisters), Lisa Dreyer (Fantastic Fest). Moderated by Caryn Coleman (The Future of Film is Female).

The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies Presents The Back Rooms: An Exploration Of The Creepypastas Phenomenon

From the Slender Man to Candle Cove, internet urban legends known as creepypastas have an undeniable influence on pop culture. One of the first scholars to write about the Slender Man mythology, Simon Laperrière invites you on a journey through these amateur fictions from a sociological point of view, and why they keep us in front of our computers late at night. Creepypastas are a new folklore that cannot be ignored.

28 Films Later: What Every Filmmaker Should know On Their First Movie According To Divide/Conquer

So you want to make an independent genre film and don’t know where to start? Avoid the pitfalls and listen to the experts behind such recent films as FREAKY, CAM, THE VOYEURS, BLACK CHRISTMAS (2019), CLIMATE OF THE HUNTER, NIGHTSTREAM selection AGNES, and many more. Producers Adam Hendricks and Greg Gilreath of Divide/Conquer bring invaluable learning lessons from their time in the trenches straight to your computer in this specialized workshop.

Special Events

Anniversary Party Presented By FANGORIA

It’s always a great year for genre film and our friends at FANGORIA have gathered a cavalcade of reverences and recollections on classics and guilty pleasures throughout history. All celebrating major milestones ranging from 10 to 90, hear from over 50 of your favorite voices in the horror community including Karyn Kusama, Bryan Fuller, David Dastmalchian, Ernest Dickerson and many, many more on demand all festival long.

A Glitch In The Metaverse: Tech Tock with Rodney Ascher

Held in social VR app AltspaceVR, audience members are invited to a live Q&A conversation with renowned filmmaker Rodney Ascher (ROOM 237, THE NIGHTMARE), to discuss his recently released project A GLITCH IN THE MATRIX (now available on Hulu and VOD from Magnolia Pictures) and his rising interest in tech storytelling. Open to computer- and VR headset-users alike, this intimate event is part of a social VR series hosted by tech journalist Jesse Damiani (featured in Wired, Forbes, and The Verge), which highlights entrepreneurs and artists, peering into the world technology is creating.

Gwar Workshop Tour!

Who wants to know all the deepest secrets Gwar holds for the fabrication of their extravagant outfits? Follow Blòthar the Berserker’s human slave for an exclusive behind the scenes tour of the GWAR workshop and discover the craftsmanship and artistry behind the legendary band.

Museum Of Home Video: NIGHTSTREAM Edition

The Museum of Home Video is 90 minutes of found footage for stoners, seekers, archivists, and drinkers that gather every Tuesday on Twitch to watch pirate television for the soul. Creative Director Bret Berg and Producer Jenny Nixon will present a special dark-sided Saturday Edition during NIGHTSTREAM for your viewing pleasure.

Racer Trash Scare-Tastic Double Feature

Radical editing collective RACER TRASH emerged during the pandemic to take over Twitch with mind-melting remixes of iconic motion pictures streamed for charitable causes and have since racked up an impressive filmography of scrambled image and sound. All are welcome on the Friday of the festival for a scare-tastic double feature full of vibes. Follow @RacerTrash for regular surprise programming.

Spectral Transmissions

Inspired by the golden age of Weird Tales and radio ghost stories, acclaimed directors Michael Palmieri and Donal Mosher present an audio program of writers and filmmakers that explores memory, technology, and how the past and the future haunts us today.

24-Hour Virtual Lounge

Everyone’s favorite 8-bit wonderland is back for you to explore and gather with your fellow fest goers whenever you desire. Kick off the sequel to NIGHTSTREAM at our Opening Night Gathering then keep that browser window open for the rest of the weekend and lose yourself in the warm glow of your screen. Do not look away from your device. Become one with the pixels. It’s 01011better 00100 this 11001 way 101011011101000

Short Film Programs

Presented by Gunpowder & Sky’s ALTER and DUST

Shorts Program I: How We Survive

This collection of shorts featuring malevolent spirits, workplace nightmares, and death craving time travellers is a clear reminder that life is a tragedy.

Inheritance, dir. Annalise Lockhart (USA); Excuse Me, Miss, Miss, Miss, dir. Sonny Calvento (Philippines); Guts, dir. Chris McInroy (USA); Night of the Living Dicks, dir. Ilja Rautsi (Finland/Denmark); Cutter, dir. Dan Repp, Lindsay Young (USA); Sweet Mary, Where Did You Go?, dir. Michael Anthony Kratochvil (Australia)

Shorts Program II: Your Mind is a Shackle

A cradle robbing monster, territorial rodents, and a fateful busride fill out this mix of live-action and animated terrors. 

The Moogai, dir. Jon Bell (Australia); Ghost Dogs, dir. Joe Cappa (USA); Pare, dir. Lauren Sick (USA); This is Our Home, dir. A.K. Espada (USA); The Expected, dir. Carolina Sandvik (Sweden); Sleep Talker, dir. Carl Firth (Australia); Hey, It’s Me, dir. Courtney Sposato, Mark Sposato (USA); Night Bus, dir. Wen-Ming Hsieh (Taiwan)

Shorts Program III: Last Resorts

Supernatural rituals, techno horrors and doomed friendships display the wreckage of desperation. 

Koreatown Ghost Story, dir. Minsun Park, Teddy Tenenbaum (USA); True North, dir. Brian Mitchell, Ian Start (USA); Safe and Sound, dir. Ian Kammer (USA); Body of the Mined, dir. Eric Jungmann (USA); Cracks, dir. Andrea Cazzaniga (Germany); Lilias Adie, dir. Elize du Toit (UK)

Shorts Program IV: Human Nature

It’s in our nature to destroy ourselves and each other as seen in these tales of betrayal and vengeance. 

Transfer, dir. Jonas Goveaerts (Belgium); Such Small Hands, dir. Maria Martinez Bayona (UK); Atrophy, dir. Nick Hartanto, Sam Roden; The Vandal, dir. Eddie Alcazar (USA); In The Soil, dir. Casper Rudolph Emil Kjeldsen (Denmark); Munkie, dir. Steven Chow (New Zealand)