Back in 2014, we published a teaser for a alluring short film titled, Afronauts, a fictionalized depiction of the true tale of the Zambia Space Academy's mission to beat Amrerica to the moon in 1969. Its peaceful yet intense inflection harbors its heart in Matha (Diandra Forrest), who trains to become the transcender. An embodiment of perpetual obligation to demand a future for Black bodies, culture, and aspiration.

What if Josephine Baker was a Cenobite with Naomi Campbell's fire? 

In the UK, a married couple, Jacqueline Flowers & Vincent Hargrave go about their days with jobs that pay the bills and indulge their literature, film, and music hobbies for balance. Jacqueline is the one who leans more into horror. The gravitational pull into "things that were a bit weird" has been a part of her creative process since she was young reading Pan Horror booksBeloved by Toni Morrison became a milestone because "the atmosphere is so dense, you can feel the humidity, the lack of any breeze and the smell of pain and hurt. The movie really did it some big justice and I fell in love with the characters even more." It is films that are "ethereal" that enrapture her muse. Caligula (1979), The Shining (1980) and The Cell (2000) are great visual references for her "thick molasses" style and pacing in her own work.

A curated cluster of collector figures, celebrity selfies, Xbox games, and DVD's offer an 80's fueled peek into one's horror proclivities. The Thing, Re-Animator, Ghostbusters, and Beetlejuice are just some of the movies and their themes Ivotres Littles has displayed like a mini-museum in her home. She is the California-based, host and creator of  Horror Movies and Beyond, a YouTube channel where she talks to composers, writers, directors, and actors who got their start working on cult horror classics. She additionally gets deep into the disturbing headlines that inspired some well-known horror favorites, and even unpacks some exhausting questions such as, 'why all the remakes?' The production design, editing, and overall ambiance of her show is a delight. Whether Ivotres is donning a proton pack with a mic next to Danielle Harris or surrounded body part props, #TheOprahOfHorror was gracious enough to delve more into her inquisitive nature, calling for more research and discourse on what makes the genre so appealing. Below is just a slither of her story:

An enthusiastic crowd in South Philly will gather to see their childhood nightmares come to life with a new generation discovering theirs at an advanced screening of the imaginative adaptation of Alvin Schwartz' Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark.

Jennifer Reeder's somber, hypnagogic look into the lives of teenagers and adults after a local high schooler goes missing demands a critical and compassionate look within.

Mild spoilers ahead!

I'm going to spend a lifetime with Knives And Skin. Its pulse of color, vibrating hope on a low frequency. Its unapologetic exposure of our inner-selves that is unspeakable, primal, and plain messy. Its audiacity towards the indulgence of surreality. Knives And Skin is a filmic whole. Shot incredibly by Chris Rejano, it is a complete body and mind. Everything we have and will experience if given the room. Due to its tonal soup, I celebrate its odd brilliance by speaking of and back to this film the way it spoke to me.

Author Nicole Givens Kurtz is back with a new adventure! Sisters of the Wild Sage is a compilation of short stories that have a Wild west flare in a future where heroines are armed with ancestral magic. "When someone with a pistol meets someone with a magic wand, the pistol loses," Nicole says. "Saddle up. Escape to a West as weird and wonderful as one might imagine."

Josh (William Jackson Harper)

For a film that could have been easily white-washed, Ari Aster’s Midsommar does have an inclusive cast. Before our characters are even taken to Sweden where most of the film's dread fueled action takes place, we meet them in their college town. Dani (Florence Pugh) stresses about her sister’s scary email while her boyfriend, Christian (Jack Reynor) drinks at a bar with his buddies, only one of whom is black named Josh (The Good Place's William Jackson Harper).

I have watched enough horror movies to know—and I’ve been brown enough long enough to know—that this setting does not bode well for a person of color. The token minority, say it with me, tends to die first. Because of this ratio, I expected a few other established tropes of the horror genre in Josh’s character, too, and I have to admit, I was delighted and surprised that nothing played out the way I expected.

Ebony Elizabeth Thomas was not allowed to indulge magic. She was warned that magic was essentially a quest towards trouble, and as a black girl living in working-class Detroit in the 1980's, trouble could all too easily (and without merit), find her. That motherly heed opens and echoes throughout the introduction of Thomas' book, The Dark Fantastic: Race and the Imagination from Harry Potter to the Hunger Games. That deafening pause on imagination manages to blossom into a aromatic refute. The lore of magic is for everyone with many worlds to traverse. What was once demanded be inaccessible to Thomas is now extensively encapsulated in The Dark Fantastic as an act of taking to task, widely accessible, mainstream, popular fantasy fiction (fairy tales, horror, superhero comics, 'soft' science fiction, alternate histories) for its woefully problematic approaches to to racial representation. This history has had unsavory consequences for children and young adults of color as audiences and consumers.

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