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A Night of Horror at the Milton Theatre

By Jillyan Spell

Revival House, a film event held monthly in Milton, Delaware, challenged filmmakers again for the Third Annual “Oh, The Horror! Trailer Challenge” at the Milton Theatre on Oct. 16.

Revival House offered filmmakers a chance to win prizes by making a horror-themed movie trailer in only seven days using a specific line of dialogue ( “I never said he/she stole the money,”) and a totem or prop which this year was a key.

The trailers were judged by the three founders of Revival House, Rob Rector, Rob Waters, and Erin Tanner along with an anonymous local filmmaker based on creativity, elements of the horror genre and the use of the totem and line of dialogue three days before the public viewing.

The audience then helps the judges determine a winner by voting for their top three favorites of the trailers submitted.

The prizes include audience favorite pick, $500 for second place and a grand prize of $1,000 is then awarded at the end of the show.

Rector said the film program has been a staple at the Milton Theatre for four years, hosting monthly film events at the Milton Theatre designed for audience participation.

“Anyone who has been to the Milton Theatre knows how special and unique that venue is,” said Rector.

“The idea of the challenge originated from a film class that I teach at Delaware Tech,” said Rector. “I had the students go out and film a trailer that would be similar to the genre elements that they are studying and most gravitated to horror.”

“The quality of the films is amazing,” said Rector about the submission to the trailer challenge. “We have some very talented filmmakers in the area, and the prize money helps too.”

Maddison Griffin, a filmmaker from Ocean City and Delaware Tech Communications graduate, won the $1,000 grand prize with her trailer “Parallax.

“I filmed like three hours, three different days,” Griffin said. “I didn’t want to do all those shots, but it just wasn’t scary enough. You can’t really see it until you load it onto your PC and look. So, then I’d go back and reshoot again and again.

“I feel super happy,” Griffin continued. “I like that you have to have specific dialogue and a totem that changes each year, and the time limit.

"These kinds of opportunities are important because it gets you pumped, excited and motivated,” said Griffin. “This kind of competition teaches you about deadlines.”

Second place was awarded to “Like Father, Like Son” directed by Communications students Cassidy Clark, Safi Farlow, Jalen Levenberry and Zack Grey.

“I think it’s great that Revival House gives us this chance to explore filmmaking and things we want to do in a sage low-risk environment,” said Levenberry. “We get to show off our talents locally and that’s a big deal.”

Maddison Griffin, Delaware Tech Communications graduate wins the grand prize. Photo by J. Spell.
Cassidy Clark, Safi Farlow, Jalen Levenberry and Zack Grey accepting second place for their trailer entry. Photo by J. Spell.

Delaware Tech Communications graduate Glenn Hiller awaiting the judge’s decision. Photo by J. Spell.

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