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The latest animated short from UK-based filmmaker (and Fango contributor) Ashley Thorpe, THE HAIRY HANDS (see Fango #293) looks set to have another “hit with a myth,” having been screened recently at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. The vivid little flick—Thorpe’s fourth in a series of animations that aim to resurrect neglected aspects of British legend—looks set to follow in the footsteps of the award-winning SCAYRECROW and THE SCREAMING SKULL.
Evoking such previous genre treats as THE BEAST WITH FIVE FINGERS, HANDS delivers EC Comics-style chills, telling of a stretch of Dartmoor road haunted by the eponymous fingered fiends. “My interests have always been this perverse blend of high and low art, and that wonderful kaleidoscope where one feeds from the other,” Thorpe tells Fango. “So it’s rather fantastic knowing that a film based upon the B3212 on Dartmoor has been screened at one of the world’s greatest festivals. It’s a bit like having one of your kids amble accidentally into a cover shot for Time magazine and drop his trousers. It's extraordinary, really. From the windswept moors of Devon to the sunlit beaches of Cannes… But then, I suppose that was always my intention for the Penny Dreadful project. Get these stories out there!”
Due to other writing commitments, including the next Penny Dreadful entry SPRING HEEL JACK, the director was unable to attend the screening, but producer Tom Atkinson, who was present, was left extremely optimistic by the response. “THE HAIRY HANDS looks glorious up on the big screen,” he says, “and audiences so far have cried out in fear, oohed and aahed in the right places, and the bubble of chatter during the credits is a very positive sign.” For more on Thorpe’s Penny Dreadfuls, go to www.carrionfilms.co.uk.
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