"FEARnyc is the must-attend horror event of October. It's so impressive that I'm pretty sure it's the best thing happening in the entire country this October." - Dread Central

"New York's biggest horror film festival will haunt your nightmares" - Celluloid Junkie

"A huge, authoritative horror film festival" - Time Out New York

"Now horror film fanatics really have something to go crazy about." - NBC News

"Horror fans are in for a macabre menu of varying flavors." - The New York Times

"FEARnyc is massive" - Bloody Disgusting

"A must for horror fans" - Truly Disturbing

"Your ideal Halloween warm up event" - Wicked Horror​

FEARnyc is New York City's biggest horror film festival, and in 2019 the festival is going nationwide.

The 2019 festival will, for the first time ever, expand beyond NYC to include screenings and events throughout all 50 states and Puerto Rico. The festival will also expand to a month-long event, with screenings and events happening in NYC and across the country from October 1 - 31, 2019.

Many films screened at FEARnyc have garnered distribution or gone on to wider release, including Dead Awake, Unearthed and Untold: The Path to Pet Sematary, Inoperable, Sickhouse, The Dark Tapes, Don't F*** in the Woods, The Butcher Brothers' A Beginner's Guide to Snuff, Charismata, Flesh Blanket, Howard Lovecraft and the Undersea Kingdom, the remake of Blood Feast, and others.

The 2019 Programming Directors are Nicholas Romano (A24, Sony Pictures, The Weinstein Co.), Tina Romero (filmmaker and daughter of George A. Romero), journalist Jay Kay, Hannah Macpherson (director, Sickhouse), and Sean O'Shea (actor/musician).

Our Jury

FEARnyc prides itself on having one of the world's top horror film festival juries comprised of industry professionals, journalists, and more.

Past juries have included:

Robert Eggers - Writer/Director, The Witch

Jeffrey Reddick - Creator and Screenwriter, Final Destination

Stacy Title - Director, The Bye Bye Man

Kate Siegel - Screenwriter and Actress, Hush

Peter Phok - Producer, The House of the Devil, I Sell the Dead, Stake Land

Brad Miska - Producer, V/H/S, Southbound; Editor-in-Chief, Bloody Disgusting

Terry Castle - Producer, House on Haunted Hill, Thirteen Ghosts

Joshua Rothkopf - Film Editor, Time Out New York

Matt Boiselle – Senior Film Critic, Dread Central

Jim Klock - Executive, Terror Films

tomandandy - Composers, The Hill Have Eyes, The Strangers, The Mothman Prophecies

Johnny Recher - Asst. Director, Underworld Awakening, The Purge: Election Year

Liz Vastola - Costume Designer, V/H/S, The Innkeepers, The Purge: Election Year, We Are What We Are, Keep The Lights On

Brian Spears - Special Effects Artist, Jessica Jones, The Sacrament, I Sell the Dead, We Are What We Are

Dee Wallace - Actress, The Howling, Cujo, E.T: The Extra Terrestrial

Tuesday Knight - Actress, A Nightmare on Elm Street 4, Wes Craven's New Nightmare


Past FEARnyc honorees have included the late Wes Craven and George A. Romero, with tribute events featuring appearances by family members and former cast members from the directors’ films.


FEARnyc screens new horror films alongside popular horror films. Past selections have included Psycho, Halloween, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors, The Lost Boys, The Monster Squad, and many others.

The festival’s program of classic film screenings has included Nosferatu, Carnival of Souls, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, House on Haunted Hill, Plan 9 from Outer Space, Dementia 13, Silent Night Bloody Night, And Then There Were None, The Brain That Wouldn't Die, Santa Claus Conquers the Martians, and more.

Unique special events are a hallmark of FEARnyc and have included a screening of The Exorcist preceded by a candlelit seance with the audience led by a renowned psychic, screenings of Night of the Living Dead and Faust with live orchestral scores, and more.

In addition to film screenings and live, in-person director/writer/crew/cast Q&As, FEARnyc 2019 is planned to feature art installations, live theatrical presentations, concerts, horror-themed panel discussions, photography exhibits, collaborations with local organizations, and many more diverse events in all 50 states and Puerto Rico.

Submit a Film or Project to FEARnyc

FEARnyc is currently accepting submissions of the following:

Feature Films
Short Films
Documentary Features and Shorts
Experimental Features and Shorts
Animated Features and Shorts
Film Scores
Original Songs Composed for Film
Virtual Reality Presentations
Film Stills and Film Posters
Unproduced Screenplays
Music Videos
Live Theatrical Events
Music Concerts
Art Installations

Best Feature
Best Director
Best Screenplay
Best Actor
Best Actress
Best Short Film
Best Cinematography
Best Editing
Best Score
Best Original Song Composed for Film
Best Production Design
Best Visual Effects
Best Lighting Design
Best Costume Design
Best Make-Up Design
Best Sound Design
Best Unproduced Screenplay

(List subject to change based on the nature of films and projects submitted)

The festival accepts both features and shorts. For the purposes of this festival, features are defined as films with a running time of 45 minutes or longer. Anything shorter is consider a short film.

We accept films from people of all backgrounds and levels of experience and from all corners of the globe. We accept horror, thrillers, mystery, sci-fi, suspense, and related films.

We have no world premiere status regulations. We also do not have any regulations regarding whether your film has been screened elsewhere. For the 2019 festival, your project must have been completed on or after September 1, 2017.

We accept films in all languages. If your film is in a language other than English, please include subtitles.

There are no fee waivers available and there will be no submission fee refunds, even if you are not accepted into the festival.

By submitting your film, you consent to allow the film to be screened at the festival. If you are accepted into the festival, you may be asked to provide photos, stills and video clips to be used by the festival for publicity purposes. By submitting your film, you authorize that your work is cleared for festival exhibition and you accept full legal responsibility for the intellectual property therein.

When you submit a film, the film becomes eligible for all of the awards in all of the categories. Films will be judged by a jury consisting of professionals from the film industry, journalists, and more. For previous juries, see above.

Overall Rating
  • Jeffrey Lee DuPree

    Thank you FEARnyc, I wish I could attend, it looks fun, my loss but appreciative of being official selected. Would love to bring the prize home but I did not, the best screenplay did, congratulations to the winner and everyone involved. Hope I can bring an award when I make the film in the nearest future. Keep Horrorin'

    November 2017
  • Nicholas Pontoski

    Fear NYC was a great festival and we were honored and privileged to have been a part of it!

    November 2017
  • Alex Mathieson

    Had a great time at the festival, and was blessed to play against such quality films. It gave me a great confidence going forward.
    John and the team we're really informative, and I hope the festival has a chance to grow to match the levels of passion I felt being there.

    November 2017
  • James Rewucki

    FEAR nyc was one of the highlights of our fest run, they treated us really well, communicated really well and put on a great fest for all involved. I really got the impression that they cared about the filmmakers and about making the fest the best it could be.

    October 2017
  • Daniel Robinette

    FEARnyc is stellar in every way. John Capo is passionate about the horror genre and it shows with the event. The film selections are like hidden gems and the competitive quality is very high. The fest also manages to incorporate some really big names in the horror industry, which is amazing for fans and filmmakers. I can't recommend this festival enough for anyone involved with horror. 5 STARS across the board.

    October 2017