A frightening new web series is quickly becoming an internet sensation. Inspired by Alfred Hitchcock and The Twilight Zone, “Horror Hotel” uses a combination of visual effects, custom built sets and intriguing plots to captivate its audience. The web series is created by the Hess family and is shot here locally in Georgia.
“Horror Hotel” premiered on Sept. 26, 2013 at the Porter Sanford Community Arts Center in Decatur, Ga. The horrifying web series is unique because the theme and cast members change each episode. “Houdini’s Hand” was the pilot episode for the series.
“We call this an anthology series and only have a few recurring cast members,” executive producer Debbie Hess said. “It took about nine months to develop the first episode, with each episode being 12-20 minutes alone. Our goal is to create a decent story that has great plot; not random visual effects without a story line.”
At least 80 crew members helped develop the six- episode first season. Ricky Hess, the series creator, has an extensive background in costume design and special effects. He directed three episodes during the first season. His father, Al Hess, is in charge of writing the stories and prop designs.
“We work pretty smoothly as a family and it is easier to make decisions more quickly”, Hess said. “Our custom sets are located in the basement of our home.”
“Horror Hotel” was selected to be screened at four different film festivals. In March 2014, over 30 minutes of the web series will be screened at the LA Web Festival, which is home to the world’s largest audience for the series. The series has also been nominated by the 2014 Georgia Entertainment Gala for best short film web series.
The first episode of the second season is currently in production. “Aliens Stole My Boyfriend” is the title and will surely be a thriller for all viewers. Two previous cast members will also be returning to “Horror Hotel” to star in the first episode of season two.
“The audience can expect an extension of what we did last year,” Hess said. “There will be more custom designs, including a hotel and an alien space craft landing in the parking lot.”
“Horror Hotel” can be viewed on YouTube and Scifinal.com. The DVD of the first season is also available on amazon.com. The second season will also contain six episodes that are 12- 20 minutes long.
To view trailers from previous episodes or get information on current production, please visit www.horrorhotelwebseries. com. It will be a horrifying treat!
Season One episode “Houdini’s Hand” showcases the gruesome prop design of the series.