Grimm Up North, Manchester’s horror, sci-fi and fantasy film festival hits the AMC cinema from Thursday 6th Oct and runs through to the evening of Sunday 9th Oct. Featuring a number of premieres as well as cast and crew appearances, this is a truly international festival of frights.

On Thursday 6th Oct the gala opening night screening will feature the UK premiere of Retreat starring Jamie Bell, Thandie Newton and Cillian Murphy. Members of the cast and crew will be attending and the evening will be presented by Yvette Fielding from TV’s Most Haunted.

The festival will also feature British music and screen icon Martin Kemp who will be attending, along with leading lady Jane March and producer Jonathan Sothcott, for a special screening of his directorial debut, Stalker. Sure to be a controversial festival talking point, the film reworks – and totally re-imagines – infamous mid-seventies sex-and-slash shocker, the banned ‘video nasty’ The House on Straw Hill into a tense psychological thriller about memory, identity and the creative imagination. It features cult horror icon (and star of the original film) Linda Hayden in a supporting role. Commenting on the film, Jonathan Sothcott said: ‘Stalker is the slickest, best-directed film we’ve made to date and a genuinely well-made, creepy horror film in its own right. We feel it is strong enough to stand a theatrical release in selected UK cinemas and we’re looking forward to unleashing it on the world’.

Also screening are the regional premieres of the visceral Spanish home invasion thriller Kidnapped and the claustrophobic German horror Urban Explorers, as well as a rare chance to catch David Cronenberg’s classic film version of Stephen King’s The Dead Zone on the big screen. The world premiere of full-on Faustian revenge fantasy Adam Chaplin will also be showing; it’s a new benchmark in demented mayhem and a guaranteed Grindhouse cult hit of tomorrow. Additionally, Lucky McGee’s The Woman will see its regional premiere – this film has been generating huge controversy, polarising opinions since its screening at Sundance.

The Reverend is a British vampire vigilante horror with an all-cult-star cast headed by Rutger Hauer, Tamer Hassan, Emily Booth and Pinhead himself, Doug Bradley. Director Neil Jones, as well as members of the cast and crew, will be attending.

There will be a brace of pitch black comedies in slacker zombie road movie Deadheads, from Sam Raimi associates the Pierce Brothers, and the John Landis produced charmer Some Guy Who Kills People, featuring Lucy Davis. There’s a slice of extreme Asian cinema in the harrowing Revenge: A love story, cerebral Mexican science fiction in the acclaimed By Day & By Night and a chance to explore the ‘lost’ Halloween film, Halloween 3: Season of the Witch with resident expert Stef Hutchinson.

Robin Hardy’s long-awaited sequel to the legendary cult classic The Wicker Man, The Wicker Tree, receives its regional premiere. There’s more cinematic controversy in nihilistic post-apocalyptic shocker The Divide, the UK premiere of a startling film version of Weird Tales maestro HP Lovecraft’s lunatic epic The Whisperer in Darkness, African Zombies on the rampage in The Dead and The Theatre Bizarre, a surreal new spin on the classic portmanteau horror film.