Halloween in Salem, Massachusetts is in the spotlight in a big way this year, with not only Netflix’s Hubie Halloween but also the new independent horror comedy Mass Hysteria both set and filmed on location in the iconic “Witch City” and both to be released within days of each other this October.
Mass Hysteria is about a group of Salem Witch Trial re-enactors who find themselves the target of a modern day witch hunt after a tourist dies on Halloween night during their reenactment play.
With the low-key charm of Shaun of the Dead and the sophisticated sarcasm of What We Do in the Shadows, Mass Hysteria is a dark comedy that conquers the horror of the Salem Witch Trials by juxtaposing it with the 2020 Covid pandemic and a funny, satirical story.
Directed by Arielle Cimino and Jeff Ryan, and written by Jonathan T. Coleman, and Christopher O’Connell, the feature film stars Geena Santiago, Jeff Ryan (Orange is the New Black), Scott Swayze, Charlie Pollock, Michelle Veintimilla, Luis Cancelmi, Destry Allyn, and Alexandra Dietrich.
Co-Directors Arielle Cimino and Jeff Ryan commented: “We are so lucky to be partnering with the Horror Collective because Mass Hysteria speaks and caters to a very passionate and fun-loving audience, and the Horror Collective knows how to deliver those films to our audience because they themselves are huge fans of the genre. Beyond their passion for film Heidi, Jonathan and Shaked clearly have the know-how and skills to carry our story to the next level and we couldn’t be more excited to be in the hands of a team that really believes in our film.”
Shaked Berenson, Entertainment Squad’s CEO (The Horror Collective’s parent company), says: “Horror films can be used to bring great awareness to social injustices. Jeff and Arielle skillfully use dark comedy to remind us of the atrocious hate crimes that occurred in Salem, Massachusetts, and how relevant they are to modern events.”
Heidi Honeycutt, Acquisitions Executive at The Horror Collective, added: “Mass Hysteria is hilarious. It’s a genuinely funny movie about a very dark time in New England’s history that perfectly satirizes the worst of human mob mentality and crazy superstitions. Tragedy plus time does equal great comedy in the case of this film.”
It was shot entirely on location in Salem.
A new official trailer for the film was released this week, which you can view below, along with the announcement that Mass Hysteria will be released on VOD on October 1 from The Horror Collective, currently available for pre-order on Vimeo here.
Mass Hysteria is also screening on Friday, October 2 as an Official Selection at our own Halloween International Film Festival Virtual Edition.
You can watch the brand new official trailer below.
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