The Inspiration – AYAOTD The Original
Are You Afraid of the Dark? (AYAOTD) first aired on Nickolodean on August 15, 1992. Each episode was centered around a group of teenagers called The Midnight Society. These kids met on the same night each week at a secret location in the woods. They sat around a campfire and told scary stories. Each week featured a different member of the Midnight Society hosting the story telling. These stories were more than just “ghost stories.”
The series was created for a young teenage audience and was among the first of its kind to target teenagers. Another series to target teenagers was Goosebumps. AYAOTD was originally created by DJ MacHale and produced by Ronald Weinberg. It was filmed in Quebec, Canada. The series featured several actors who are well known today, such as Ryan Gosling, Melissa Joan Hart, Neve Campbell, and Tia & Tamara Mowry, just to name a few.
AYAOTD quickly gained a large following of tween- & teenagers who are still fans today. A quick search on any social media site will return many references to the show and numerous followers paying homage to their childhood favorite. DJ McHale even be seen at fan gatherings interacting with fans of the show who have their own followings. Here is on such fan YouTube. These fans have some series episode favorites, like the Tale of the Ghastly Grinner and The Tale of the Phantom Cab.
First of all, we chose to call this a tribute, not a “fan film,” because, while we are fans making this film, we are showing our admiration and respect to the series that started our love of the horror genre. In addition to our being fans, we are calling on our fellow fans to be a direct part of the production. Click over to our Indiegogo campaign to learn more. While our cast and crew have generously donated their time and talent to the project, we still need funding for equipment, meals, and editing. Finally, we are not asking to make a profit on this project. In fact, we do not want to make a profit. We need to be able to get the equipment and specialized editing we need.
Write and director, Nathaniel Ingram, is one such fan who grew up watching the series. It was the basis for his now love of the horror genre. He has written 4 scripts to date, two dramas & two horrors. He wanted to pay homage to the series that sparked his love of horror, so one of the scripts is Are You Afraid of the Dark?: A Tribute – The Tale of the Ghostly Guest. Co-director, Zac Lockard, is also a fan of the series and has helped make additions to the script that reference the series and specific episodes. Together, the two have developed a solid story that includes references to past episodes, making this a true tribute that fans will love.
You will want to pay very close attention to every detail in this film, looking for these references. Also, we want to see who can name every episode referenced. Fan feedback on just the small releases we have had to date has been very encouraging. See you in the dark!