Looking Forward to YellowBrickRoad?

YellowBrickRoad, an indie horror flick about of a group of investigators trying to solve the 70-year-old mystery of a missing town, has been a genre film festival darling for the last year. Now, thanks to horror film series Bloody Disgusting Selects, it will get a limited AMC theatrical release June 1st.

This character-driven film, reminiscent of ‘70s-style slow-build horror, has screened at numerous film festivals, including Slamdance and Screamfest, and it won Best Feature at the New York Horror Film Festival. The official synopsis is as follows: “In the Fall of 1940, the entire population of Friar, New Hampshire—all 572 of them—abandoned their homes, their possessions and their lives and walked up an ancient trail, never to be seen alive again. Their fates remained a mystery for over seventy years, until a team of researchers discover the trailhead and attempt to retrace the path the doomed citizens of Friar took. A few among them believe they will find something terrible in the forest. But it is the forest that will find something terrible in them.”

You’ve probably not heard of this film, as it’s one of many indie horror films making the genre film fest rounds that go mostly unnoticed by mainstream distributors (Insidious proves that’s a changing trend). Well the horror mavens at Bloody-Disgusting.com found this travesty too much to bear, and decided to get into the distribution game themselves. In March they announced their new Bloody Disgusting Selects program, for which they partnered with AMC Theatres (AMC) and an entertainment management company called The Collective.

The new Bloody Disgusting Selects genre label will find quality indie horror, taken primarily from the film festival and international markets, and give it across-the-board distribution. This includes a limited theatrical release (at AMC theaters, naturally), and then VOD, DVD, online and even television availability. And did I mention the Bloody Disgusting DVDs will feature unrated content, bonus features, and special packaging?

Bloody Disgusting Selects launched with the announcement of its first four films for this summer, which include Atrocious, Cold Fish, Rammbock, and YellowBrickRoad. AMC will screen one new title a month during the summer, starting last month with Rammbock, the German urban zombie flick. YellowBrickRoad is slated for June, and Japanese director Sion Sono’s Cold Fish slated for July. The summer ends with Spanish-language Atrocious in August, a found-footage horror that has been compared to Paranormal Activity.

They’ve been picking up titles faster than the undead multiply, with the acquisition announcement in May of horror/comedy Chop, and Argentinian apocalypse pic Fase 7 (which premiered at SXSW here in Austin in March).

I missed seeing Fase 7 at SXSW, so it’ll be fun to get a chance to catch it. One of my favorite horror films at that festival was The Divide, which was quickly acquired by Anchor Bay after it premiered so happily it should get a decent release. Though when that release will be is anyone’s guess (I have heard a completely unsubstantiated rumor that it will be August 8th). I saw both Cold Fish and Rammbock at Austin’s genre film festival Fantastic Fest last fall. They both were pretty good, and I’m excited to check out YellowBrickRoad. If there’s anyone I trust to pick and choose the best of indie horror out there, it’s the Bloody Disgusting team.