DREAD, L.A.-based distribution and financing company Epic Pictures’ specialty horror label, announced today ahead of the European Film Market a new deal with Iconic Events, the theatrical releasing company behind the massively successful theatrical takeover of Terrifier 2, to bring the critically acclaimed horror anthology SATANIC HISPANICS to over 800 screens across the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. The film, which is made up of five segments, is directed by Alejandro Brugues (Juan of the Dead), Gigi Saul Guerrero (Bingo Hell), Mike Mendez (Big Ass Spider!), Demián Rugna (Terrified), and Eduardo Sánchez (The Blair Witch Project), some of the leading Latin filmmakers in the horror genre. DREAD will release in September 2023.
SATANIC HISPANICS world premiered to great acclaim at Austin’s celebrated genre event Fantastic Fest in 2022, where it earned the festival’s Best Director Award, and would later go on to screen at Beyond Fest, Morbido Film Festival, and over a dozen festivals around the globe. With each director hailing from a unique corner of Latin America, the anthology has been praised for the diversity of cultures that contribute, with folklore from Argentina, Cuba, and Mexico all explored through the films and fused with political and social commentary through a thrilling genre lens.
"We are deeply grateful to have worked with such incredible talent on Satanic Hispanics,” said Epic Pictures and DREAD CEO and owner Patrick Ewald, who also produced the feature, on the partnership. “Everyone from the cast, the directors, the writers, and the crew from Argentina, Mexico, and all the way back to the US all made this a once in a lifetime experience. There was never a dull moment on set, and I mean that in the best way possible. With Iconic as our partner in the theatrical release, I can only hope that audiences will have as much fun watching the film as we did making it."
The film begins with The Traveler (Efren Ramirez, Napoleon Dynamite), the only survivor following a police raid on a house in El Paso. As he’s taken into questioning, he tells them tales of his life and the magic he’s witnessed across the land, from portals to other worlds, mythical creatures, demons, and the undead, with each tale spinning into one of the film’s distinct shorts.
"This movie is very special for us,” said Alejandro Brugues, who produced in addition to directing a segment “The first all-Latino horror anthology, made by some of the best horror directors representing us from all corners of Latin America, and focused on telling our stories. We couldn’t be happier having Iconic Events joining us in unleashing our Latino mayhem on you during Hispanic Heritage month.”
"We’re really excited to be working with Iconic Events, a company that has proven to think differently and outside the box” added Mike Mendez, who also carries dual directing and producing credits on the film. “This is Latino filmmakers telling Latino stories made for everybody. To be working with Epic and Iconic to bring our movie to theaters during Hispanic Heritage Month is a great opportunity for us to share our film and culture with everyone.”
Born from an urge and an urgency to create a horror film that the Latino community could celebrate as their own, SATANIC HISPANICS showcases diversity both behind and in front of the camera, and is written by Pete Barnstrom, Alejandro Mendez, and Lino K. Villa, who share credits across all five segments. The cast is led by Ramirez, Greg Grunberg (Star Wars IX), Jacob Vargas (Sons Of Anarchy), Hemky Madera (Weeds), Patricia Velasquez (The Mummy), Jonah Ray Rodrigues (Weird: The Al Yankovic Story), Demian Salomon, Luis Machin, and Ari Gallegos.
Argentinian, L.A.-based filmmaker Alejandro Brugues first made his mark with the 2011 horror-comedy Juan of the Dead, which won the Goya Award for Best Spanish Language Foreign Film. Following that, he’s directed standout pieces in ABC’s of Death 2 (2014), Nightmare Cinema (2018), and the Into The Dark series entry Pooka Lives! (2020) for Hulu and Blumhouse. The Inheritance, his next feature, will be released later this year by Netflix.
Canadian-Mexican filmmaker and actress Gigi Saul Guerrero is a bold and emerging talent in the horror scene named by Variety as one of their 10 Latinx to Watch 2019. Following her award-winning feature Culture Shock (2019) she entered into a first-look deal with Blumhouse Productions and has since gone on to direct Bingo Hell (2021), the fifth installment in the Welcome to the Blumhouse film series, and for Amazon Prime’s The Purge series. Best known for her work in the genre space, Guerrero created and directed the breakout horror short El Gigante and is the co-founder of Luchagore Productions which focuses on genre content with a Latinx element.
Mike Mendez has had two features premiere at the Sundance Film Festival; his feature debut Killers (1996) and the horror-comedy The Convent (2000). He’s since directed The Gravedancers (2006), Big Ass Spider! (2013), Don’t Kill It (2017), and for the horror anthology Tales of Halloween (2015), which he also produced. In addition to directing, Mendez is known for his work writing on IFC’s Stan Against Evil and for editing Beavis & Butthead Do The Universe (2022) and on Paramount+’s new reboot, Beavis & Butthead.
Argentinian filmmaker Demián Rugna is the director of Last Getaway (2007), You Don't Know, Who You're Talking To (2016), and the breakout festival hit Terrified (2017), and a segment in the horror anthology Cursed Bastards (2011). His next feature, When Evil Lurks, currently in pre-production, will be released by Shudder.
Born in Cuba, Eduardo Sanchez soared to recognition with his feature debut, the viral culture-defining The Blair Witch Project (1999), which he co-directed with Daniel Myrick. He’s directed various indie features, as well as a segment in V/H/S/2 (2013), before moving into television, directing on such shows as Supernatural, Lucifer, From Dusk Till Dawn, and the first four episodes of the Glen Morgan (The X-Files) BBC America series, Intruders.
Both Brugues and Mendez produce on the feature, and Ewald and Kate Page produce for Epic Pictures. Carlo Glorioso and Raynor Shima co-produce, and Matt Cleckner, Joe Hui, and Robert L. Lucas associate produce.