As Halloween approaches, there comes a time to check in with all the things that creep and shriek. This season is no different, and Halloween enthusiasts have been hard at work, getting their best hinges creaking and sharpest claws to scratch at windows. Some work for months, some for the whole year, every year. But they wouldn’t have it any other way.
But to survive in this media-soaked world we live in, adaptation is not only necessary, but inspiring. It’s the Wild West of technology right now, with smartphones, easy editing software and RED cameras. All sorts of avenues to not only improve, but expand. And even as the October haunt season approaches us, there are those taking full advantage of what this world has to offer. One of those individuals is Matt Dorado, who with his production company Drunken Devil Productions is not only doing live experiences, but film as well. We got to pick Matt’s brains about what drew him to the haunt life, what his plans are with Drunken Devil, and what really scares him.
FanGirlNation: What is your background with haunting?
Matt Dorado: My background in haunting goes back to high school, when I went to Halloween Horror Nights for the first time (I was 14) and got the shit scared out of me. After weeks of nightmares, I realized that I loved this industry and wanted to be a part of it. I made my first haunted house in my friend’s basement my senior year of high school—then I did two amateur haunted houses in my college dorms up in Santa Barbara. In 2012, I did a charity haunted house for a nonprofit in Santa Barbara, and in 2013 I launched Haunt S.B., which was the first public, for-profit haunt in the city. I moved to Los Angeles in 2014, and, after some trial and error, came up with Drunken Devil Productions.
FGN: How is Drunken Devil different from other haunt companies?
Matt: Drunken Devil is different than other haunt companies, in that it is rooted in the spirit of the season and the traditions of old. While the current trend at this moment is more of the “extreme” or “full-contact” haunts, we want to take it old-school and bring back the spirit of Halloween, the thrill of traditional “scares,” and a sense of celebration and revelry. Our company is rooted in this sense of mischief, and that we as individuals should embrace the reveler in all of us. We are also a media production company; we have one film being submitted to festivals, and another one in development.
FGN: What can we expect from you this Halloween season?
Matt: This Halloween, Drunken Devil is bringing our debut haunted attraction to Downtown Los Angeles The haunt is called “The Sinner’s Soirée,” and is a twisted journey through a southern gothic version of Hell. Guests will meet Mardi Gras clowns, can-can demons, voodoo creatures, and all sorts of twisted, New Orleans-inspired monsters. In the end, guests will meet the Drunken Devil, in a grand finale unlike any other! After the attraction, guests that are over 21 can enter the Devil’s Den, a themed bar and lounge featuring sponsored cocktails, vendors, and entertainment. It’s going to be an amazing ride!
FGN: Any other projects coming down the pipe?
Matt: Yes; in addition to the haunt this year, we are planning on throwing a Mardi Gras event in February, one that combines a “party” atmosphere with a “haunt” atmosphere. We are also developing a feature film; one that will hopefully start filming in the next two years.
FGN: What scares you, Matt?
Matt: I have three horrible, irrational fears: Dinosaur Statues (I hate driving to Palm Springs, and I hate the lower lot of Universal Studios), Kelp (I cannot stand the way it feels when it touches me, and I tend to stay out of the ocean because of horrible kelp experiences), and Anchovies (their little eyes are mortifying).
FGN thanks Matt for taking the time out of his manic schedule to chat with us. No rest for the wicked, after all. The Sinner’s Soiree will commence starting October 9th in Los Angeles. To pre-order, please visit Drunk Devil’s Website and opt-in to their mailing lists for announcements and more. Also, be sure to follow the dapper devils on Facebook, Instagram