By Kathy Collins
Tampa’s most historic, and most haunted, grand movie palace, the Tampa Theatre, announces the return of A Nightmare On Franklin Street this October. The third year of this frightening event will feature nine nights of petrifying programming. There will be enough variety to haunt everyone from the average Halloween enthusiast to the hard core horror fan.
Here is the line up for the nine days of fright. The series includes movies, Ghostly Tours of the Tampa Theatre and live events.
On Friday, October 23 is a screening of The Conjuring at 7:30 p.m., and then at 11:30 p.m., you can take a Late Night, Lights Off Ghost Tour of the Tampa Theatre.
Save Saturday, October 24 for a day of fright for families. At 11:30 a.m., you can take a Family-Friendly Ghost Tour of the theatre. Then at 3:45 p.m., you can watch Devil’s Rejects. Pet Sematary will be shown at 6:30 p.m. For the hard core horror fan, come to the theatre at 9:30 p.m. for a screening of The Shining.
Sunday, October 25 will bring a day of Monstrous Musicals. First up is Nightmare Before Christmas at 3 p.m. You can see Sweeney Todd at 5:30 p.m. At 11 p.m. (doors open at 9:30 p.m.) you will not want to miss one of the most bizarrely entertaining and enduring musicals ever made, The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
On Monday, October 26 come see An American Werewolf In London.
On Tuesday, October 27 at 7:30 p.m. come see and hear local author and storyteller Deborah Frethem as she takes to Tampa Theatre’s historic stage for an intimate evening of Bay-area ghost stories and supernatural tales from her new book, Haunted Ybor City. Following the performance, Frethem will sign copies of all three of her books, including Ghost Stories of St. Petersburg and Haunted Tampa: Spirits of the Bay, with sales benefitting Tampa Theatre’s ongoing restoration efforts.
Fans picked the 1920 silent film Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde as this year’s fan favorite pick for the “Silent Scream” film on Wednesday, October 28 at 7:30 p.m.. This silent film will be accompanied live by renowned theatrical organist Dr. Steven Ball on Tampa Theatre’s original 1926 Mighty Wurlitzer Theatre Organ.
On Thursday, October 29 at 7:30 p.m. watch The Exorcist on the big screen the way it was meant to be seen and immediately following the film, there will be a moderated discussion and audience Q&A with Linda Blair, where she will share behind-the-scenes stories from the filming of this classic, worldwide phenomenon. A portion of the proceeds will benefit The Linda Blair WorldHeart Foundation.
Friday, October 30 brings two showings of Poltergeist. You can see the 2015 film version at 6 p.m. and the 1982 version at 8:30 p.m. Stay for a Late Night, Lights Off Ghost Tour at 11:30 p.m.
On Halloween, Saturday, October 31, the Tampa Theatre has a full day and night of programming starting with a Family Friendly Ghost Tour at 11:30 a.m. Then, later you can see four of Alfred Hitchcock’s films. Strangers On A Train will be shown at 2 p.m. At 4:45 p.m. the 1948 film Rope will be shown. At 7:15 p.m. you can see the 1963 thriller The Birds.The 1960 classic Psycho will be shown at 10:15 p.m.
Tickets for A Nightmare on Franklin Street classic films are $10 for general admission and $8 for members. The exception is tickets to The Rocky Horror Picture Show are $15 for general admission and $13 for members.
Tickets for the Family Friendly Ghost Tours are $10 for adults and $8 for children. Members are free. For the Late Night, Lights Off Tours, tickets are $15 for general admission and $10 for members.
Tickets for The Exorcist: Live Discussion With Linda Blair And Screening of The Exorcist are $43. There are a limited number of VIP Meet and Greet tickets available for $103.50.
Tickets can be purchased at the box office, located at 711 N. Franklin Street in downtown Tampa or online at TampaTheatre.org (service fees apply).