Tuesday, October 28, 2008
All Access: Haunted House
Halloween is right around the corner, and if you're looking for a real scare this year, have we got the place for you. Voted the country's most hair-raising haunted house, this New York attraction is now in Miami for the first time. Seven's Dave Kartunen has tonight's terrifying All Access pass.
WSVN -- Ghouls, creeps and downright freaks. This is not your average haunted house. From the moment you step inside, get ready for a real fright!
This year's theme, real-life ghost stories.
John Harlacher, Director, Nightmare: Ghost Stories: "We asked people to tell us their true life paranormal experiences. We picked the scariest 18 of them and made rooms based on those experiences."
The first floor of this spooky warehouse in Miami's Wynwood area is considered old-school horror, you know, mummies and monsters, but once you make it up to the second floor, your heart will truly skip a beat.
John Harlacher: "You're going to see unique and startling images, and events that you won't see anywhere else."
But it's not easy putting all this scare into action. It all starts with the cast, looking pretty normal here, but through the miracle of make-up and masks...
John Harlacher: "You put this on, then put this on over it and make the wound match up to this."
They're transformed into their creepy characters, and the house comes alive. Part of what makes the house so creepy, is you walk through a pitch-black maze to get from room to room, creating chaos and confusion, exactly what they want you to feel.
John Harlacher: "The texture of fear we are working with this year is bewilderment. We want people to be like, 'Where do I go? What's going on? What's that? Ah! What's that?'"
Each room is carefully constructed and choreographed months in advance to bring each ghost story to life.
For example, enter the phantom room.
John Harlacher: "It's based on a story of a guy in England whose father went out into the road one day and saw a man covered in rags but he just disappeared."
As you make your way through these freaky phantoms, keep in mind you never know what's real and who may jump out at you. Then there's the exorcism room, one of the more elaborate concepts the crew came up with.
John Harlacher: "When you go into the room, you're standing on the wall, and you're looking at the floor in front of you, and you actually have to walk through this bed, through this bizarre tight space, which envelopes around you."
L Powers, who plays exorcism girl, says some of the folks who come through her room don't make it to the next .
L Powers: "They crouch into little corners, and they have actually left the house after my room."
According to director John Harlacher, that's not unusual, and the cast considers patrons running in fear a sign they're doing a good job.
L Powers: "We have a thing called the body count, which is the amount of people who get scared out of the house that night, the amount of people who are too scared to walk through the house that night."
And even for someone like me, who's gone behind the scenes to see how it's all done, it's still darn right scary.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: