Terror in the Bay Annual Film Fest Brings Horror Back to the North Core By Kris Ketonen
hunder Bay’s horror buffs are in for a treat at this year’s Terror in the Bay Film Festival. Not only is this year’s event longer, spanning four days in October, but for the first time, feature-length horror films will be included in the lineup, festival director and Thunder Bay filmmaker Chris Borgo says. “We really wanted to fit in at least two feature-length films; that’s why we extended it,” he says. “Plus, the popularity is just growing and growing.” This year’s film lineup wasn’t
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finalized by the time Borgo spoke with The Walleye, and judging of submissions was still taking place (he did say the festival received a few hundred film submissions this year). But whatever films end up screening, Borgo assures the festival will offer something for all horror fans. “We have films from all budgets and sizes, from a college independent film all the way to pretty much a Hollywood production-level film,” he says. “There’s horror comedy, there’s slow-burn, psychological thrillers, there’s blood and guts.” Festival organizer Jennifer
Swistun-Wolski says the Terror in the Bay Film Festival is also playing a key community-building role in the city. “You’d be surprised how many horror advocates [there are], and how many people love this kind of thing,” she says. “And until now, there was no platform for us, for people to come and enjoy this and experience it. I love the idea that it just brings out everyone.” “It’s really about, in a nutshell, bringing everybody together, making those connections,” says Borgo. “There are people that have come since day one, true die-hard horror
film fans. They message us throughout the year, ‘please remind us about the festival. Do you want us to help you? We know you make the odd film here and there, do you need a hand with that?’” “And that right there, speaks volumes,” he adds. “There are at least a half-dozen people I know that I’ve met through this film festival that are now helping us with our films.” This year’s Terror in the Bay Film Festival runs October 17–20 at the Paramount Theatre on Court Street. For more information, visit terrorinthebay.com.