The UK's Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies Teaching an I Am Legend Class This Week - Dread Central
Connect with us


The UK’s Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies Teaching an I Am Legend Class This Week



Since its original publication in 1954, Richard Matheson’s I Am Legend has gone on to become one of the most renowned and influential horror novels of all time. The book has also seen a ton of classic film adaptations, including The Last Man on Earth starring Vincent Price, The Omega Man with Charlton Heston, and the more recent version with Will Smith.

To celebrate the impact of Matheson’s book, Stacey Abbott, who is a Reader in Film and Television Studies at the University of Roehampton, will be delivering a talk called “The Legacy of Richard Matheson’s I Am Legend” at London’s Horse Hospital arts venue on Thursday, March 15, at 7pm. The talk will form part of the Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies, an ongoing series dedicated to offering university-level history, theory, and production-based masterclasses relating to the horror genre. If you’d like to attend, you can get your tickets here.

In anticipation of the event, we decided to conduct a short interview with Abbott about what fans of I Am Legend can expect from her talk.

Dread Central: First and foremost, why do you think I Am Legend is a book worthy of continued discussion?

Stacey Abbott: I Am Legend is a timeless novel that raises important questions about what it means to be human and what it means to be a monster. It took the Gothic figure of the vampire hunter and revealed the everyday violence and horror within their actions by suggesting that perhaps the vampires had a point of view. While it was a product of its time — offering an apocalyptic vision within the context of Cold War, post-atomic bomb tensions — it also speaks to 21st Century anxieties with its apocalyptic vision and its focus upon the notion of a global pandemic.

DC: You probably get asked this a lot, but of all the official and unofficial film adaptations of the novel, which do you think is the best and why?

SA: I would say that the film that best captures Matheson’s vision remains Night of the Living Dead (as well as Romero’s subsequent Dead movies). While not an official adaptation, his zombie narrative captures Matheson’s claustrophobic siege narrative in which humans have to barricade themselves into a house surrounded by the living dead, desperately trying to break in and kill them. It is prepared to present the humans as morally questionable and fallible, and it captures Matheson’s focus upon the end of humanity and replacement by a new world order. What happens when humanity become the legend?

DC: Without revealing too much, can you talk a bit about Matheson’s own unproduced film script, which was rejected by the MPAA and the BBFC?

SA: It is a very faithful adaptation that captures the violence of his story. His script contained a brutality that did not sit well with the censors. They repeatedly refer to it as ‘gruesome’; and while not graphic by today’s standards, it is intensely physical in its descriptions. There are no fades to hide the violence. It was written to be up there on the screen.

DC: What can fans expect from your talk on March 15th?

SA: They can expect a lively discussion of the changing nature of horror cinema and Matheson’s place within that transition… with lots of fun clips.

“The Legacy of Richard Matheson’s I Am Legend” Synopsis:
Richard Matheson’s novel I Am Legend (1954) is a recognized classic of science fiction and horror. It has been adapted many times in films such as The Last Man on Earth (1964), The Omega Man (1971), and I Am Legend (2007). In 1958 Matheson wrote a script adapting the novel for Hammer Studios, but it was never filmed. The script was rejected by both the MPAA and the BBFC. In 1968 George Romero directed Night of the Living Dead, a film he admitted was inspired by Matheson’s novel, and this was the film that Matheson felt was most faithful to the themes of his book.

Through an analysis of a selection of official and unofficial adaptations of the novel, including Matheson’s own script, this lecture by Stacey Abbott considers how this text marks a key transformative moment within the evolution of the horror genre on film. It will consider how the novel reimagined the vampire film through the lens of science fiction and how Matheson’s adaptation for Hammer offered a new, more brutal and modern approach to horror than the studio’s Gothic adaptations of The Cure of Frankenstein (1957) and Dracula (1958).  Abbott will discuss how the script confounded the censors in its approach to horror, signaling a cultural resistance to the modernization of the genre and a growing tension between filmmakers and arbiters of cinematic taste.

Finally, in this lecture Abbott will demonstrate not only how I Am Legend influenced Romero’s work, representing a key bridge between classic and new horror, but also continues to influence 21st Century filmmakers, particularly in the development of the vampire and zombie genres.




SXSW 2018: Reviews, Interviews, and Wrap-Ups!



Dread Central was out en masse at this year’s South by Southwest Film Festival, and we came back with some of the best damned coverage you could ever hope for. In case you missed any of it, we have a full index of coverage for you right here!

Big thanks to both Dark Sky Films and Shudder for their sponsorship of our media village content. Also big kudos to Jon Condit, Jonathan Barkan, Shaked Berenson, and Josh Millican for their tireless work.



Daily Wrap-Ups


Continue Reading

Dread Central Presents

2018 Saturn Awards Horror Nominees Include Get Out, The Shape of Water, IT, The Lodgers, The Walking Dead, Ash vs Evil Dead, and Lots More!



The nominees for the 2018 Saturn Awards (now in their 44th year) have been announced, and while of course Black Panther and his fellow superheroes lead the fray on both big and small screens, our beloved genre is very well represented in all its various forms…

The nominees include “pure” horror and thriller movies and TV shows, horror/sci-fi hybrids, and of course fantasies such as recent Oscar winner The Shape of Water. Our own Dread Central Presents film The Lodgers also made the cut as Best International Film!

This year’s Saturn Awards will be handed out in June in Burbank, California. It’s a tough choice in several categories; let us know your picks below! And if you want to make your votes official, visit to learn more about how to join The Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films.


Best Comic-to-Motion Picture Release
Black Panther
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
Spider-Man: Homecoming
Thor: Ragnarok
Wonder Woman

Best Science Fiction Film
Alien: Covenant
Blade Runner 2049
Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
War for the Planet of the Apes

Best Fantasy Film
Beauty and the Beast
Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
Kong: Skull Island
Paddington 2
The Shape of Water

Best Horror Film
47 Meters Down
Annabelle: Creation
Better Watch Out
Get Out

Best Action or Adventure Film
Baby Driver
The Fate of the Furious
The Greatest Showman
Kingsman: The Golden Circle

Best Thriller Film
Brawl in Cell Block 99
Murder on the Orient Express
The Post
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Wind River

Best Director
Ryan Coogler – Black Panther
Guillermo del Toro – The Shape of Water
Patty Jenkins – Wonder Woman
Rian Johnson – Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Jordan Peele – Get Out
Matt Reeves – War for the Planet of the Apes
Denis Villeneuve – Blade Runner 2049

Best Writing
Black Panther – Ryan Coogler and Joe Robert Cole
Blade Runner 2049 – Hampton Fancher and Michael Green
Get Out – Jordan Peele
Logan – Scott Frank, James Mangold and Michael Green
The Shape of Water – Guillermo del Toro and Vanessa Taylor
Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Rian Johnson
Wonder Woman – Allan Heinberg

Best Actor
Chadwick Boseman – Black Panther as T’Challa / Black Panther
Ryan Gosling – Blade Runner 2049 as K
Mark Hamill – Star Wars: The Last Jedi as Luke Skywalker
Hugh Jackman – Logan as James Howlett / Logan
Daniel Kaluuya – Get Out as Chris Washington
Andy Serkis – War for the Planet of the Apes as Caesar
Vince Vaughn – Brawl in Cell Block 99 as Bradley Thomas

Best Actress
Gal Gadot – Wonder Woman as Diana Prince / Wonder Woman
Sally Hawkins – The Shape of Water as Elisa Esposito
Frances McDormand – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri as Mildred Hayes
Lupita Nyong’o – Black Panther as Nakia
Rosamund Pike – Hostiles as Rosalie Quaid
Daisy Ridley – Star Wars: The Last Jedi as Rey
Emma Watson – Beauty and the Beast as Belle

Best Supporting Actor
Harrison Ford – Blade Runner 2049 as Rick Deckard
Michael B. Jordan – Black Panther as N’Jadaka / Erik “Killmonger” Stevens
Michael Keaton – Spider-Man: Homecoming as Adrian Toomes / Vulture
Chris Pine – Wonder Woman as Steve Trevor
Michael Rooker – Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 as Yondu
Bill Skarsgard – It as It / Pennywise the Dancing Clown
Patrick Stewart – Logan as Charles Xavier / Professor X

Best Supporting Actress
Ana de Armas – Blade Runner 2049 as Joi
Carrie Fisher – Star Wars: The Last Jedi as General Leia Organa
Danai Gurira – Black Panther as Okoye
Lois Smith – Marjorie Prime as Marjorie
Octavia Spencer – The Shape of Water as Zelda Delilah Fuller
Tessa Thompson – Thor: Ragnarok as Valkyrie
Kelly Marie Tran – Star Wars: The Last Jedi as Rose Tico

Best Performance by a Younger Actor
Tom Holland – Spider-Man: Homecoming as Peter Parker / Spider-Man
Dafne Keen – Logan as Laura Kinney / X-23
Sophia Lillis – It as Beverly Marsh
Millicent Simmonds – Wonderstruck as Rose
Jacob Tremblay – Wonder as August “Auggie” Pullman
Letitia Wright – Black Panther as Shuri
Zendaya – Spider-Man: Homecoming as Michelle “MJ” Jones

Best Production Design
Beauty and the Beast – Sarah Greenwood
Black Panther – Hannah Beachler
Blade Runner 2049 – Dennis Gassner
The Shape of Water – Paul Denham Austerberry
Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Rick Heinrichs
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets – Hugues Tissandier

Best Editing
Black Panther – Michael P. Shawver and Claudia Castello
The Fate of the Furious – Christian Wagner and Paul Rubell
Get Out – Gregory Plotkin
Logan – Michael McCusker and Dirk Westervelt
The Shape of Water – Sidney Wolinsky
Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Bob Ducsay

Best Music
Black Panther – Ludwig Göransson
Coco – Michael Giacchino
The Greatest Showman – John Debney and Joseph Trapanese
The Shape of Water – Alexandre Desplat
Star Wars: The Last Jedi – John Williams
Wonderstruck – Carter Burwell

Best Costume Design
Beauty and the Beast – Jacqueline Durran
Black Panther – Ruth E. Carter
The Greatest Showman – Ellen Mirojnick
Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Michael Kaplan
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets – Olivier Bériot
Wonder Woman – Lindy Hemming

Best Make-up
Black Panther – Joel Harlow and Ken Diaz
Blade Runner 2049 – Donald Mowat
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – John Blake and Brian Sipe
It – Alec Gillis, Sean Sansom, Tom Woodruff, Jr. and Shane Zander
The Shape of Water – Mike Hill and Shane Mahan
Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Peter Swords King and Neal Scanlan
Wonder – Arjen Tuiten

Best Special Effects
Black Panther – Geoffrey Baumann, Craig Hammack, and Dan Sudick
Blade Runner 2049 – John Nelson, Paul Lambert, Richard R. Hoover and Gerd Nefzer
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – Christopher Townsend, Guy Williams, Jonathan Fawkner and Dan Sudick
Kong: Skull Island – Stephen Rosenbaum, Jeff White, Scott Benza and Mike Meinardus
Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Ben Morris, Mike Mulholland, Chris Corbould and Neal Scanlan
War for the Planet of the Apes – Joe Letteri, Dan Lemmon, Daniel Barrett and Joel Whist

Best Independent Film
I, Tonya
Professor Marston and the Wonder Women
Super Dark Times

Best International Film
Baahubali 2: The Conclusion
The Lodgers
The Man Who Invented Christmas
The Square
Wolf Warrior 2

Best Animated Film
Cars 3
Despicable Me 3
The Boss Baby
Your Name


Best Superhero Adaptation Television Series
Black Lightning
The Flash
Legends of Tomorrow
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Best Science Fiction Television Series
The 100
Doctor Who
The Expanse
The Orville
The X-Files

Best Fantasy Television Series
American Gods
Game of Thrones
The Good Place
The Librarians
The Magicians

Best Horror Television Series
American Horror Story: Cult
Ash vs Evil Dead
Fear the Walking Dead
The Strain
Teen Wolf
The Walking Dead

Best Action-Thriller Television Series
The Alienist
Animal Kingdom
Better Call Saul
Into the Badlands
Mr. Mercedes

Best Television Presentation
Channel Zero
Descendants 2
Doctor Who: “Twice Upon a Time”
Mystery Science Theatre 3000: The Return
The Sinner
Twin Peaks: The Return

Best Actor on Television
Jon Bernthal – The Punisher as Frank Castle / Punisher
Bruce Campbell – Ash vs Evil Dead as Ash Williams
Sam Heughan – Outlander as Jamie Fraser
Jason Isaacs – Star Trek: Discovery as Captain Gabriel Lorca
Andrew Lincoln – The Walking Dead as Rick Grimes
Seth MacFarlane – The Orville as Ed Mercer
Kyle MacLachlan – Twin Peaks: The Return as Dale Cooper
Ricky Whittle – American Gods as Shadow Moon

Best Actress on Television
Gillian Anderson – The X-Files as FBI Special Agent Dana Scully
Caitriona Balfe – Outlander as Claire Fraser
Melissa Benoist – Supergirl as Kara Danvers / Supergirl
Lena Headey – Game of Thrones as Cersei Lannister
Sonequa Martin-Green – Star Trek: Discovery as Michael Burnham
Adrianne Palicki – The Orville as Commander Kelly Grayson
Sarah Paulson – American Horror Story: Cult as Ally Mayfair-Richards and Susan Atkins
Mary Elizabeth Winstead – Fargo as Nikki Swango

Best Supporting Actor on Television
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau – Game of Thrones as Jaime Lannister
Miguel Ferrer – Twin Peaks: The Return as Albert Rosenfield
Kit Harington – Game of Thrones as Jon Snow
Doug Jones – Star Trek: Discovery as Commander Saru
Christian Kane – The Librarians as Jacob Stone
Michael McKean – Better Call Saul as Chuck McGill
Khary Payton – The Walking Dead as King Ezekiel
Evan Peters – American Horror Story: Cult as Kai Anderson, Andy Warhol, Marshall Applewhite, David Koresh, Jim Jones, Jesus, Charles Manson

Best Supporting Actress on Television
Odette Annable – Supergirl as Samantha Arias / Reign
Dakota Fanning – The Alienist as Sara Howard
Danai Gurira – The Walking Dead as Michonne
Melissa McBride – The Walking Dead as Carol Peletier
Candice Patton – The Flash as Iris West
Adina Porter – American Horror Story: Cult as Beverly Hope
Krysten Ritter – The Defenders as Jessica Jones
Rhea Seehorn – Better Call Saul as Kimberly “Kim” Wexler

Best Performance by a Younger Actor in a Television Series
KJ Apa – Riverdale as Archie Andrews
Millie Bobby Brown – Stranger Things as Eleven
Max Charles – The Strain as Zach Goodweather
Alycia Debnam-Carey – Fear the Walking Dead as Alicia Clark
David Mazouz – Gotham as Bruce Wayne
Lili Reinhart – Riverdale as Betty Cooper
Chandler Riggs – The Walking Dead as Carl Grimes
Cole Sprouse – Riverdale as Jughead Jones

Best Guest Performance in a Television Series
Bryan Cranston – Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams as Silas Herrick
Michael Greyeyes – Fear the Walking Dead as Qaletqa Walker
David Lynch – Twin Peaks: The Return as FBI Deputy Director Gordon Cole
Jeffrey Dean Morgan – The Walking Dead as Negan
Rachel Nichols – The Librarians as Nicole Noone
Jesse Plemons – Black Mirror as Robert Daly
Hartley Sawyer – The Flash as Ralph Dibny / Elongated Man
Michelle Yeoh – Star Trek: Discovery as Captain Philippa Georgiou / Emperor Georgiou

Best Animated Series or Film on Television
BoJack Horseman
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs
Family Guy
Rick and Morty
The Simpsons
Star Wars Rebels

Best New Media Television Series
Altered Carbon
Black Mirror
The Handmaid’s Tale
Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams
Star Trek: Discovery
Stranger Things

Best New Media Superhero Series
Future Man
Marvel’s The Defenders
Marvel’s Iron Fist
Marvel’s Runaways
Marvel’s The Punisher
The Tick


Continue Reading


SXSW 2018: Leigh Whannell’s Upgrade Wins Audience Award



Congraulations are in order as Leigh Whannell (Saw, Insidious) has won the SXSW Audience Award for his sci-fi action/thriller Upgrade! For those still in Austin who want to see the movie for themselves, there will be a screening tonight at the South Lamar Alamo Drafthouse at 11pm in Theater A.

In our review, we called Upgrade, “…a pure adrenaline shot of sci-fi body horror thrills.

Set in the near-future, technology controls nearly all aspects of life. But when Grey, a self-identified technophobe, has his world turned upside down, his only hope for revenge is an experimental computer chip implant called Stem.

Upgrade stars Logan Marshall-Green, Betty Gabriel, Harrison Gilbertson, Benedict Hardie, and Melanie Vallejo. It will be in theaters in June 1.


Continue Reading

Go Ad Free!

Support Dread Central on Patreon!

Recent Comments


Join the Box of Dread Mailing List

* indicates required


Copyright © 2017 Dread Central Media LLC