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"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 October, 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.”


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.

From 2017, in partnership with Event Cinemas, we rolled out our satellite festival, MONSTER FEST TRAVELLING SIDESHOW. Visiting cities all across the country, everywhere from Cairns to Perth, the program boasts eight to ten features, comprising of international, Australian and state-specific premieres! In 2019, MONSTER FEST AUSTRALIA was established, held over four days in multiple cities simultaneously, the program was a more refined version of what had played in Melbourne earlier in the month with a few exclusives for each city.

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

To inquire about collaborating on an event at the annual festival, contact Monster Fest at

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.


GrantGrant Hardie
Co-founder | Festival Director | Business Director | Programmer

Grant, 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.


member5Jarret Gahan
Online Content Director | Digital Marketing Director |
Social Media Manager | Programmer

Jarret Gahan is a film writer, critic, commentator, programmer and award-winning documentarian from Melbourne, Australia. He’s the editor-in-chief on the Monster Fest site, a podcast host at FakeShemp.Net and a filmmaker for almost two decades. His award-winning documentary feature GONE LESBO GONE: THE UNTOLD TALE OF AN UNSEEN FILM has played festivals the world over and focuses on Andrew Leavold’s cult film LESBO-A-GO-GO, the film on which he also served as cinematographer. Aside from features, Jarret has worked in various capacities from director to cinematographer to editor to commentator on numerous promotional and supplemental featurettes for such local and international labels as Monster Pictures, Umbrella Entertainment, Madman Entertainment, Vestron Video Collectors Series, Kino Lorber, Bounty Films, Platinum Cult Edition, Severin Films, Second Sight Films, Wild Eye Releasing and 88 Films. He’s currently co-producing and shooting the second series of the wildly popular web-series VIDEO HOARDERS.


member5Ben Hellwig
Technical Director | Print Traffic | Programmer


Ben has worked in all aspects of film distribution for over half a decade, from acquisitions to product development, production, design and everything in-between. Outside of Monster Pictures, Ben is the co-founder of a boutique VHS distribution label, Celluloid Apocalypse, and co-produces VIDEO HOARDERS.


neilNeil Foley
Co-founder | 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.

loretta-headshot-v2Loretta Kindness


Based in Brisbane, Loretta is co-owner of Monster Pictures and an Executive Producer of Monster Fest.




director-headshotv2Robert Kindness

Based in Brisbane, Robert is co-owner of Monster Pictures and an Executive Producer of Monster Fest.




Monster Fest Highlights