Introducing: Cruel Summer

As keen advocates of homegrown horror, nothing makes us prouder here at the LHS than when new UK talent sings on the genres biggest stages. It’s an even better feeling when they bring the house down, and this is exactly what Cruel Summer did at FrightFest just a few days ago.

Cruel Summer poster

Cruel Summer is based on a story created by Phillip Escott and Craig Newman, the founders of 441 Films, that was inspired by a spate of teen orientated crime that spread throughout the UK during 2011/2012. The screenplay was written by Phillip.

The company, which was set up in 2011 and has benefited from business development support from the WG’s creative industry team, has helped create material for boutique film distribution labels around the world.

Their work, distributed worldwide via DVD and Blu-ray, has featured in prestigious film festivals such as the Sitges International Film Festival but Phillip Escott said having their work featured at FrightFest was their best achievement to date.

Phillip, who put a Masters Degree in Film on hold to produce and complete the project, said: “FrightFest is one of the biggest, and best, festivals on the planet for horror fans. To have a film that we created included is truly thrilling and we are extremely excited by the prospect of having Cruel Summer premiere there in August. It really is a dream come true.”

Phillip and Craig are specifically interested in what they call ‘real-life horror’ as opposed to the supernatural and possession sub-genres. They say that real life horror brings the horror to the viewers’ doorsteps in a very real and tangible form. In Cruel Summer the cause of terror could be your next door neighbour, a close friend, your crush, or your son and daughter.

The 80 minute privately financed made-in-Wales film was shot entirely in Wales using predominantly Welsh talent, both behind and in front of the camera.

Further distribution of the film is now being planned, and we strongly recommend that you try and check this out when you can.  But be warned, a cheery watch it ain’t. We’ll of course keep you informed with its progress.

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