Our 10 Favourite Horror Masters

David Girvan | September 4, 2015

In honour of horror hero Wes Craven who sadly passed away recently, we've compiled a list of our favourite non-Hammer horror masters. Who would you add?

1. Wes Craven

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Our Favourite Film: Scream (1996)
Also Known For: A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984), The Hills Have Eyes (1977), The Last House on the Left (1972), The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988)
In His Words: “The first monster you have to scare the audience with is yourself.”

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2. Dario Argento

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Our Favourite Film: Suspiria (1977)
Also Known For: Profondo Rosso (1975), Tenebre (1982), Inferno (1980), Phenomena (1985), Opera (1987)
In His Words: “Horror is the future. And you cannot be afraid. You must push everything to the absolute limit, or else life will be boring. People will be boring. Horror is like a serpent: always shedding its skin, always changing. And it will always come back. It can’t be hidden away like the guilty secrets we try to keep in our subconscious.”

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3. John Carpenter

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Our Favourite Film: The Thing (1982)
Also Known For: Halloween (1978), Escape From New York (1981), The Fog (1980), Christine (1983), They Live (1988)
In His Words: “What scares me is what scares you. We’re all afraid of the same things. That’s why horror is such a powerful genre. All you have to do is ask yourself what frightens you and you’ll know what frightens me”.

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4. George A Romero

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Our Favourite Film: Dawn of the Dead (1978)
Also Known For: Night of the Living Dead (1968), Day of the Dead (1985), Land of the Dead (2005), The Crazies (1973)
In His Words: “My stories are about humans and how they react, or fail to react, or react stupidly. I’m pointing the finger at us, not at the zombies. I try to respect and sympathize with the zombies as much as possible.”

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5. Roman Polanski

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Our Favourite Film: Rosemary’s Baby (1968)
Also Known For: Knife in the Water (1962), Repulsion (1965), Chinatown (1974), The Ninth Gate (1999)
In His Words: “Evil and the Devil are two different things. The Devil is how humans like to imagine evil, with horns and a tail. Evil is part of our personality. I’ve never believed in occultism or the Devil, and I’m not at all religious. I’d rather read science books than something about occultism. When it comes to cinema, evil is simply a form of entertainment to me.”

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6. David Lynch

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Our Favourite Film: Mulholland Drive (2001)
Also Known For: Lost Highway (1997), Inland Empire (2006), Wild at Heart (1990), Blue Velvet (1986), Eraserhead (1977), Twin Peaks (TV) (1990-1991)
In His Words: “There are many, many dark things flowing around in this world right now, and most films reflect the world in which we live.”

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7. James Whale

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Our Favourite Film: Bride of Frankenstein (1935)
Also Known For: Frankenstein (1931), Old Dark House (1932), The Invisible Man (1933)
Our Favourite Quote: “It’s a perfect night for mystery and horror. The air itself is filled with monsters” – Mary Shelley, The Bride of Frankenstein

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8. David Cronenberg

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Our Favourite Film: The Fly (1986)
Also Known For: Videodrome (1983), Scanners (1981), Dead Ringers (1988), The Naked Lunch (1991), The Brood (1979), The Dead Zone (1983)
In His Words: “I think of horror films as art, as films of confrontation. Films that make you confront aspects of your own life that are difficult to face. Just because you’re making a horror film doesn’t mean you can’t make an artful film.”

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9. Alfred Hitchcock

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Our Favourite Film: The Birds (1963)
Also Known For: Psycho (1960), Rear Window (1954), Vertigo (1958), Dial M for Murder (1954), Shadow of a Doubt (1943)
In His Words: “There is no terror in the bang, only in the anticipation of it”.

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10. Todd Browning

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Our Favourite Film: Dracula (1931)
Also Known For: Freaks (1932), The Hypnotist (1927), The Unknown (1927)
Our Favourite Quote: “[hears howling wolves] Listen to them. Children of the night. What music they make” – Count Dracula, Dracula

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