Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Dollar Bin Horror Spotlight - Horror-101.com

What is one of the best horror sites on the web for mainstream and indie horror news? Horror-101.com of course! Armando Valle (pictured below) and Alex DiVincenzo (pictured left), with whom I chatted with for this interview, started it in August of 2006 after writing together on a different site. This site is unique among other news site for there connection to the indie horror scene and for giving exposure to filmmakers who typically don't receive coverage on the "bigger" horror sites. For this reason, Horror-101.com is in the Dollar Bin Horror Spotlight.

Q: Horror 101 has such a wide variety of interviews and reviews. How did you take your idea of a kick ass horror site and turn it to a reality?

A: Armando, the co-owner of the site, and myself used to write for a small horror website called Bloody News. It eventually fizzled out, but our dedication to the genre pushed us to find a new outlet for our writings. As a result, Horror 101 was launched in August of 2006. We've been steadily growing ever since and are extremely proud of all that we've accomplished in that short time.

Q: Unlike a lot of the larger horror sites, you have strong connection to the indie/underground horror scene and bring to light movies that many horror fans ever see and probably wouldn't see the light of day on other sites. How do you hear about these films?

A: We are very active in the independent film community. Armando himself is an indie filmmaker. We regularly attend independent film festivals and screenings. We love the passion and creativity behind it. It's something you don't find it Hollywood very much these days, so it's quite refreshing. What helped our networking a lot in the beginning was the use of Myspace. Back when that was the biggest site on the internet, we would find filmmakers or they would find us and offer to send us copies of their films to review on the site. Now that we have made a bit of a name for ourselves, we keep in regular touch with many talented independent filmmakers and studios who send us their latest releases. I can't event count the amount of great movies that I love which I never would have seen if it weren't for Horror 101. We hope to pass that along to our readers.

Q: Your sites founder, Armando Valle, is also an indie film maker. Could you tell us a little about his films and where we can learn more about them?

A: Remember the name Armando Valle, because you'll be hearing it a lot in the future. In addition to being the founder of Horror 101 and a cool Puerto Rican, he is an indie filmmaker from Baltimore, MD. He has completed a number of his own shorts, most of them horror-related (although he is not opposed to working outside the genre), and has also worked with fellow filmmakers on their projects. He recently completed a short called The Waterboard, which had its world premiere at the Sacramento Horror Film Festival a few weeks ago. It's his best work to date, and the audience enjoyed it. It's my unbiased opinion that he is a talented filmmaker, and he has the ambition to go places in the future. You can keep up with his work on his website, XterminatingAngel.com, which I'm told will be relaunched in the coming weeks.
Q: On the site, you say your most ambitious goal is to launch an online visual encyclopedia of horror film. Could you elaborate or explain this idea?

A: When founding the site, it was ultimately our goal to create something akin to an IMDb of horror, but with content exclusive to our website. You would be able to look up a horror film, and in addition to the cast, crew, etc., you would find our reviews, interviews, news, and other relevant information about the film. Some of the other, "bigger" genre websites have already begun to implement a similar feature, so we've put that on the back burner, although it's still something we would be interested in pursuing in the future. As for now, we're continuing to focus on expanding our content and reader-base.

Q: Is there anything else you want to share or promote?

A: If you haven't checked out Horror-101.com yet, please take a spare minute to give us a shot. We may not have the best layout or the most content, but we have a hell of a lot of heart. If you're already familiar with H101, be sure to add us on Myspace, Facebook, and Twitter. Thanks a lot for the interview, Rhonny. I'm a fan of the site, so it's cool to be on here. A big thanks also goes to anyone who read this and those who read our site. We call ourselves "The thinking person's horror website" and pride ourselves on the fact that our readers are an intelligent group that won't take whatever the studios (and websites who are funded by studios) shove down their throats.

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