New Darklands Clip Reveals an Ancient Pagan Ritual
Back in September we learned that Darklands, the debut feature of director Julian Richards (The Last Horror Movie), will finally be released on November 20th; and a new clip from the occult shocker has arrived!
Richland says the clip was inspired by a pagan ritual he attended in Scotland whilst researching the screenplay. The event, known as The Beltane Fire, takes place in Edinburgh on April 30th, which is an important date in the pagan calender celebrating the coming of spring.
"Rituals such as Beltane (Walpurgis Night) and Samhain (Halloween) are based around the seasons and celebrate the success or failure of the harvest," explains Richards. "Records suggest that in the event of a bad harvest human sacrifices were made, but some historians believe this to be a myth propagated by Roman imperialists to portray themselves as a civilizing force."
Darklands presents a contemporary spin on these themes by setting the story in South Wales, where agriculture has long been replaced by dark, satanic steel mills. A deepening recession gives rise to nationalism and neo-paganism, resulting in the desecration of local churches and the mysterious death of a steelworker killed in an industrial accident.
MVD Distribution landed distro rights in the US and Canada. "Darklands was never released in the US because the sales agent representing the film went bust and the production company changed ownership, so nobody knew who controlled the rights," said sales agent Rosana Coutinho of Jinga Films. "It took a decade to sort out chain of title, but finally, after fifteen years, this cult British film can be appreciated by a North America audience."
DARKLANDS, which has been cited by UK critics as laying the foundation of the British horror revival, follows a newspaper reporter investigating the death of a steelworker killed in an industrial accident who uncovers a conspiracy involving paganism, witchcraft, and human sacrifice. Starring Craig Fairbrass (Cliffhanger), Jon Finch (Frenzy), and Rowena King (Wild Saragossa Sea), DARKLANDS is frequently compared to Robin Hardy’s 1970’s cult classic The Wicker Man, but the writer/director also acknowledges a debt to Roman Polanski’s Rosemary's Baby.
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