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[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he BFI’s longest and most ambitious season yet, Gothic: the Dark Heart of Film, is now underway. British film fans can expect four months of events and screenings across the UK, plus a major cinema season based at BFI Southbank, all with a focus on the gothic, sinister and macabre side of the movies.

The season will explore gothic cinema throughout film history, but will also draw attention to the returning fascination with the gothic in more recent films.

Creative Director of the BFI Heather Stewart gave her thoughts on the season:

“With BFI Gothic, Britain will be filled with dread and fuelled by lust. Gothic has never been more potent or popular, reflecting the turbulent times we are living in, our deepest fears and hidden passions.

The British discovered sex in vivid Technicolor through Gothic. With a new generation gripped by the post modern Gothic world of Twilight’s ‘vegetarian’ vampires, Harry Potter’s spells and E.L. James’s 50 Shades, its meaning has mutated yet again. It’s now time to look back into the deep dark beating heart of Gothic film and give audiences the authentic thrill of this shape-shifting, perennially popular genre.”

These are just some of the fantastic screenings that will take place as part of the Gothic season:

The BFI Monster Weekend (29/30/31 August) – Screened outdoors at the British Museum will be three classics of horror cinema: Night of the Demon, Dracula and The Mummy.

The Shining at Mapledurham House (13 September) – An outdoor screening of Stanley Kubrick’s chilling masterpiece at Mapledurham House in Oxfordshire (and on Friday the 13th, no less!)

BFI Southbank (October 2013-January 2014) – A major season of gothic films to be screened at BFI Southbank, beginning from the very earliest days of cinema with the likes of Nosferatu (1922) and The Cabinet of Dr Caligari (1920), through to The Haunting (1963), The Masque of the Red Death (1964) and American Werewolf in London (1981), up to the present day with The Woman in Black (2012). The season will also include all-nighters at the BFI IMAX, for those who think they’re hard enough…

Panel discussions, lectures, and DVD and book releases will also be incorporated into the project, and there’ll be a new BFI education programme, 13 x 13, which will seek to ‘(inspire) a gothic imagination in younger audiences’. With so many different events to choose from, there’s a dripping slice of the dark heart of film to be had for everybody this autumn/winter. Thank you, BFI – don’t mind if we do…

Sources: BFI, Guardian
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