Saturday, 2 September 2017

#Halloween Ghost Walks and The Horror Season at The Prince Charles Cinema @ThePCCLondon

DC Editor Adam writes…


Are all you civilians ready and set for the mists and mellow fruitfulness, then? Good for you. In the walking tour game, however, when the meteorological calendar turns to September, our thoughts darken as the autumn shadows lengthen and we start getting ready for Halloween Ghost Walks.



We're not the only ones. Those closet Goths at the Prince Charles Cinema released details of their October Horror season yesterday – and there are a couple of London classics on the menu…



The 1958 Hammer version of Dracula (pictured above) features in the season. It's a tale with many London connections, not least its association with the Lyceum Theatre where write Bram Stoker worked with the great Shakespearean actor-manager Sir Henry Irving.

I had great fun recently working with some of the current cast of the Lion King at the Lyceum, telling them a few ghost stories for a forthcoming Halloween project. Here's my shadowy selfie taken as I spun a ghostly tale in the auditorium…



More news of that soon.

Last year I covered the classic Nosferatu on the Halloween London Podcast, and I'll be returning to vampires once more for the 2018 version. Catch up with last year's podcast here…



Hitchcock's classic Psycho is also part of the Prince Charles season. Its London connection? Hitch was born in Leytonstone, East London and Psycho features in a series of excellent mosaics at Leytonstone tube station…



The Prince Charles season would, of course, be incomplete without An American Werewolf in London, one of the best London horror movies of all.





In writer/director John Landis’s 1981 film, Jack Goodman (Griffin Dunne) stalks the streets of London on a murderous rampage, leading a lycanthropic double life that is not without its lighter moments (!). 

The scene in the wolf enclosure at London Zoo, where Jack wakes up stark naked after a night of shapeshifting and carnage is particularly memorable. In an attempt to cover his nudity, Jack takes some balloons from a schoolboy. The little boy’s memorable deadpan complaint to the nearest (clothed) adult remains one of my favourite lines in any movie: 


“A naked American man stole my balloons.”


For those of you as obsessed with London-spotting in the movies as I am, An American Werewolf… is a particular joy. The usual suspects are here, of course: Trafalgar Square, Piccadilly Circus and the rest. But I'd like to pick two out-of-the-way locations which have an added advantage, namely…

You can swing by these locations from An American Werewolf in London after taking a walk with An American Tour Guide In London. Our very own London Walks Pen and Daily Constitutional Special Correspondent David Tucker leads his Hampstead & Kensington walking tours close by these locations…


One of the gorier scenes is set on Hampstead Heath, with Well Walk featuring in the build-up…

(Spoiler alert? Well, the smart money was always on the werewolf…)




Redcliffe Square in Kensington stars as the exterior of Nurse Alex Price's flat (as played by Jenny Agutter)…



But it is perhaps the chase scene at Tottenham Court Road Underground station that is of most value to us today, given just how much that station has changed in the intervening 34 years. Here's how Tottenham Court Road looked before the installation of the Paolozzi mosaics and the Crossrail makeover…








For details of the full Horror Season this October at the Prince Charles Cinema visit princecharlescinema.com


Info on all London Walks ghost tours can be found here: www.walks.com/popular-walks/london-ghost-walks


And here's a trailer for my Ghosts of the Old City tour…




A London Walk costs £10 – £8 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at www.walks.com.



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