13 insider tips for the 13th annual Atlanta Horror Film Festival

No need to wait for Halloween to have a scary good time in Atlanta

Anyone else would be horrified at the prospect of having a 13th annual event on Friday the 13th weekend. For the Atlanta Horror Film Festival, it's a good thing.

This 13th showcase of independent horror films promises to be downright creepy. Held September 12-14, it will screen 70 short and feature films.

Unlucky 13? Not when we’re providing 13 insider tips about Atlanta’s top horror film festival:

1. You may be sitting beside people who are up on the screen. A handful of actors from the horror films will be in attendance.

2. Not all the laughter is nervous. Shorts Block 8 is themed "Bust a Gut Horror Comedy" and screens September 14 at 9:25.

3. You can see Malcom in the Middle as you've never seen him before. Brian Hanson's "The Black String" stars Frankie Muniz.

4. The number of judges is one short. You'd think the 13 theme would pervade, but the screening committee that chose all the awards numbered 12. Each came from a film or music-related background.

5. The judges dealt with more submissions than ever before. This has been the case each year of the festival. Not only does it get creepier in theme and scope, but also the submissions are more plentiful for the competition to get into the festiva.

6. Georgia directors can be horrors. Ten of the short films come from Georgia's own filmmakers.

Credit: Contributed by "Frankenstein: Savior Of The Zombie Apocalypse" directed by David Borges

Credit: Contributed by "Frankenstein: Savior Of The Zombie Apocalypse" directed by David Borges

7. You'll want to watch where you make remarks about the films. More than 20 of the featured filmmakers will be hanging around over the course of the weekend.

8. The theater may end up with a ghost in a few months. Synchronicity is home to a theater troupe and produces plays and musicals throughout the year. Next up is a creepy interpretation of "Macbeth" that takes place in a school setting and has an all-female cast.

9. The theater (probably) doesn't have a ghost now. According to Synchonicity Theatre marketing director Sarah Kelley, the space is probably too corporate to have its own ghost. Maybe a bit of executive angst floating around, but a ghost? "I would be shocked," she says.

10. You can catch films, and you can catch Pokemon. Synchronicity Theatre is a Pokemon Go gym.

11. The meet and greet will have a bloody good cocktail. The filmmaker meet and greet will be 5:30 p.m. Thursday, September 12, at Tavernpointe, right across the hall from the theater. If you're really into the theme, order the My Bloody Valentine, a blood-orange vodka soda with a splash of grenadine.

12. Some of the films are crazy scary. For example, "Reborn Movie" is about a stillborn baby brought back to life by electro-kinetic powers. When she turns 16, she sets out for revenge.

13. They may be immersed in a zombie-loving industry, but AHFF plans on staying alive. Festival manager Lauren Kitchens is reassuring on that score, saying, "As long as there are talented filmmakers making works of horror, Atlanta Horror Film Festival will be alive and well."

Venue: Synchronicity Theatre

1545 Peachtree St. NE, No. 102, Atlanta 30309

Box office: 404-484-8636

ExploreTicket information

$12 per screening (online sales)

$14 per screening (box office)

$25 one day pass

$50 three-day pass