"I loved the creative energy of Monster Fest, the great programming, the enthusiastic audiences. In the course of over half a century of film making, I have attended almost every film festival there is and Monster Fest is one of the most interesting and enjoyable that I've experienced."
- Ted Kotcheff, Director of WAKE IN FRIGHT
MONSTER FEST is Australia’s premier genre film festival which takes place annually in November, and ‘Monster Fest Presents’ is the exhibition arm of Monster Pictures, presenting films theatrically throughout the year. Together, they are a celebration of all that is weird and wonderful in the international cult cinema palette – Horror, fantasy, science-fiction, action, crime, noir, dark drama, gothic western, black comedy, animation, erotica and more.
MONSTER FEST is about blackened cinemas with awe-struck patrons sitting on the edge of their seats. It’s about white knuckles, cold sweats, nervous gasps, gut-wrenching laughs and screams in the dark, but most of all Monster Fest is about people – people who love cinema with bite, a community of like-minded souls from every corner of life, united by a passion for the most twisted imaginings on the planet.
It is dangerous, delirious and delightful. It is about moving with wild abandon into the darkened recesses of cinematic imagination, and doing it with others. It’s about leaving your living room, entering the cinema and daring to live it large with films that are larger than life itself.
“Australia has now finally got the genre festival local fans and filmmakers have been hoping for. With their diverse approach to genre programming, Monster Fest has demonstrated it can appeal to a wider audience without losing its genre cred.”
– Mark Hartley, Director of NOT QUITE HOLLYWOOD: THE WILD, UNTOLD STORY OF OZPLOITATION
Founded in 2011, Monster Fest is a mix of Premieres, international festival favourites, challenging new discoveries and curated repertory sidebars alongside industry-focused events such as panels and masterclasses with renowned international guests, and a special emphasis on supporting emerging Australian genre film talent through the festival and beyond. Under the banner of ‘Monster Fest Presents’, we host screenings and events throughout the year, including theatrical engagements of Monster Pictures titles and in partnership with other distributors in the Australian genre community.
To apply for Press & Industry Accreditation to the annual festival, please see our Press & Industry page HERE >>
For past media coverage of Monster Fest, see HERE >>
To book or license Monster Pictures titles, contact email@example.com.
To inquire about collaborating on an event at the annual festival, contact Monster Fest Director Kier-La Janisse at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Producers would like to acknowledge and pay respect to the people of the Kulin Nation as the traditional owners of the land on which Monster Fest is produced.
Festival Director and Head Programmer
Kier-La Janisse is a film writer and programmer based in Canada. She is the Owner/Editor-in-Chief of Spectacular Optical Publications, founder of The Miskatonic Institute of Horror Studies and Director of Monster Fest since 2016. She has been a programmer for the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema and Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas, co-founded Montreal microcinema Blue Sunshine, founded the CineMuerte Horror Film Festival (1999-2005) in Vancouver and was the subject of the documentary Celluloid Horror (2005). She is the author of A Violent Professional: The Films of Luciano Rossi (FAB Press, 2007) and House of Psychotic Women: An Autobiographical Topography of Female Neurosis in Horror and Exploitation Films (FAB Press, 2012), co-edited and published the anthology books KID POWER!, Satanic Panic: Pop-Cultural Paranoia in the 1980s, and Yuletide Terror: Christmas Horror on Film and Television and she is currently writing A Song From the Heart Beats the Devil Every Time about children’s programming from 1965-1985 a well as monograph about Monte Hellman’s Cockfighter. A television series based on her book House of Psychotic Women is in development with Rook Films. Kier-La oversees all programming and operations for the annual Monster Fest flagship event in Melbourne.
Co-founder, Executive Producer and Programmer
Neil has worked in various roles within the entertainment industry since graduating from RMIT Media Arts in 1993, which ultimately resulted in him producing his first feature film in 1998 ‘BIGGER THAN TINA’ which was released theatrically by Palace Films. In the following years he has worked in various roles within the industry. In 2007 Neil and Grant Hardie began working for Melbourne based film distribution company Force Entertainment. In 2010 in partnership with Tony Romeo CEO of Force Entertainment – Neil and Grant Hardie established the label Monster Pictures. Since 2010, Neil and Grant Hardie have worked together to turn Monster Pictures into Australia’s foremost genre distribution company. In 2014 Neil and Grant Hardie took over as owners and directors of Monster Pictures. During this time they also launched Monster Fest, for which Neil is part of the Official Competition programming team.
Co-founder, Executive Producer and Business Director | Coordinator, ‘Monster Fest Presents’
Grant Hardie, an RMIT film graduate, has worked within the Australian film industry for over twenty years in roles ranging from production through distribution. Since Monster Pictures’ inception in 2010, Grant has worked in various capacities within the company and is now Business Manager & Head of Sales. Grant’s passion for film harks back to late nights as a child, waiting for his parents to fall asleep before he would sneak out to the living room to catch a Hammer Horror film on television. This enthusiasm for genre cinema carried through Grant’s adult life and has proved a driving force behind co-founding Monster Pictures. In addition to being the financial manager for the annual Monster Fest in Melbourne, Grant also oversees coordination of year-round ‘Monster Fest Presents’ satellite events.
Online Content and Marketing Manager, ‘Monster Fest Presents’
Jarret Gahan has been toiling away in visual storytelling for well over a decade, producing award-winning films, music videos and supplemental features for home entertainment releases for the last 18 years. His passion from infancy has been cinema, christened on VHS, his education started early with his first filmic memories being awash of exploding heads, flying spheres and fallen AT-ATs. In addition to heading up Monster Pictures’ genre news and culture website Cult of Monster and being the official videographer at the annual Monster Fest in Melbourne, Jarret also manages the online presence and promotions for year-round ‘Monster Fest Presents’ satellite events.
Seasonal Festival Staff:
Nicole McControversy – Features Programmer | Joe Yanick – Features Programmer | Chris D. – Features Programmer (repertory) | Catherine Seccombe – Shorts Programmer | Hussein Khoder – Shorts Programmer | Bria Baker – Shorts Programmer | Ben Hellwig – Technical Director | Melissa Begg – Operations Coordinator | Sally Christie – Hospitality Coordinator
The full list of staff credits and bios for the 2017 festival will appear on the festival site when it is launched in October 2017.