About these books
A lot has been written about British horror films over the years in books, magazine articles, online features and academic papers. But almost all of this writing covers films of the 20th century, especially the ‘Golden Age’ of British horror which is generally considered to be contemporaneous with the rise and fall of Hammer - from the late 1950s to the mid-1970s.
This creates a hugely disproportionate imbalance in the available resources: about 90-95% of written material in this field covers only 20% of the subject matter. Because 80% of all British horror movies have been produced and released since January 2000.
Why these books are needed
My series of books 21st Century British Horror Films constitute an unprecedented reference work on a largely undocumented area of cinema which actually constitutes the majority of its subgenre.
In the first two decades of this century, just over one thousand feature-length British horror films were produced and released (compared with about 250 across the whole of the previous century). Some played cinemas, some were released on DVD or on demand, some were made freely available online, some were self-distributed, some were only available in specific countries. And some have already vanished, leaving little if any trace that they ever existed.
What is in these books
These four books – three principal volumes plus an appendix of unreleased work – document every one of these films, from the blockbusters to the backyard obscurities. Each entry has a half-page entry including basic credits, plot synopsis, production history, critical analysis, international release information and a DVD sleeve or poster.
Because of the exponential increase in film production, the first volume covers the 12 years from 2000 to 2011, while volumes two and three cover four years each. That way, sizes are kept roughly equal, with 300-350 films in each book. (The appendix will contain a similar number of films which were either never completed or completed but never released.)
I am self-publishing these books because this is a pretty niche area that even specialist publishing imprints would be taking a big risk on. This means the books themselves may not be as slickly produced as they could be, but hopefully the content more than makes up for that.
Volume 1 will be launched at Leicester Horror Con on 28 March 2020. Order before that date and receive free postage. Or come along and see me at LHC where I will be selling the book for a special launch price. Volume 2 and Volume 3 are already well advanced and should hopefully be published at roughly annual intervals, followed by the appendix.
What of the future?
This project stops dead on 31 December 2019. Any film released after that date is not included. I have devoted 20 years of my life to this work – and I would like to do something else. If you would like to take up the mantle and maybe publish your own Volume 4 in the future, please contact me.
If your love of British horror cinema is largely fuelled by nostalgia and you consider most modern examples of the genre to be utter rubbish, then these probably aren’t the books for you. Sorry.