Discussion of the horror film fanzine culture of the 1980s and early 1990s has been
dominated by an emphasis on questions around the politics of taste, considerations of
subcultural capital and cultism in fan writing, and processes of cultural distinction
and the circulation of forms of capital. Sconce‘s concept of paracinema has come to
shape the conceptual approach to fanzines. The aim of this article is to refocus
attention on other areas of fanzine production, providing a more nuanced and richer
historicisation of these publications and the ways they contributed to the
circulation, reception and consumption of European horror film. Focusing on the
fanzine European Trash Cinema (1988–98) I propose a return to the actual cultural
object – the printed zine – examining the networks of producers converging around,
and writing about, Eurohorror films and related European trash cinematic forms, as
well as the contents within the publication itself.
This chapter looks at the 'scare tactics' deployed by three recent Spanish horror films - El arte de morir/Art of Dying (Alvaro Fernández Armero, 2000), Darkness (Jaume Balagueró, 2002) and El laberinto del fauno/Pan's Labyrinth (Guillermo del Toro, 2006) - focusing on their marketing practices, mechanics of distribution and exhibition, and critical reception abroad and in Spain. It analysis the production and marketing strategies deployed by the producers of El arte de morir and discusses how the commercial aesthetic of being 'like Scream' fared among critics and reviewers. The Spanish studio Filmax under its genre division Fantastic Factory produced Jaume Balagueró's second feature film Darkness in the wake of his critically acclaimed and award-winning debut Los sin nombre/The Nameless (1999) in international horror circuits. Like Darkness, El laberinto del fauno premiered in the Sitges Festival and it acted as the launching platform for the film in the Spanish media.