If you were a blossoming horror fan and of sound mind in the early 90s’, you may remember the glorious annual Horror Hall of Fame Awards. The Oscars for horror films, as they advertised it, only ran from 1990-1992, but goddamn it was the coolest thing ever. Oh, and Robert Englund hosted all three ceremonies. Fantastic times my friends.
The first annual Horror Hall of Fame ceremony at Universal Studios, California in 1990, was really something special in honoring the best of horror films, TV, actors, and special effects designers that would otherwise most likely not get recognized by that snooty little fellow by the name of Oscar. Alongside the induction act, are some really great segments and horror movie trivia from the cast and crew of said honored movies. The fact this only stuck around for three years is a damn shame. Sure, we had the Scream Awards 15 years later, but that since has gotten the ax as well. And sure, we have various virtual awards offered through some great horror magazines, but it’s just not the same. I long await for the day where this could be a thing again.
Anyways, marking 30 years since the 1991 awards returned to Hollywood, let’s focus on the second installment. The awards ceremony kicked off with Englund hosting once more, with the fantastic Cryptkeeper serving as co-host; and by co-hosting I mean slipping some awesomely random puns and gags in between inductee segments. The horror duo together set the stage for a new set of inductees to imprint their mark into the genre’s horror history books. And what better way to open the festivities, than a tip of the hat to Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds with a parody starring Freddy himself?
Yeah, I can’t think of anything right now.
The darkly lit stage sprinkled with generic Halloween decorations set the tone for the all-time greats to receive recognition for their hard-earned contribution to the horror genre, and of course, you Fred-Heads may remember this was indeed the year Freddy Krueger was to make his final appearance as the Springfield Slasher on-screen in the form of Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare; the sixth and presumably at the time, final chapter in the Freddy saga. So along with issuing achievement awards to the likes of Bela Lugosi and Roger Corman, the iconic slasher that Englund had made so legendary in a span of seven years, got his own little farewell tribute in a sort of twisted “In Memorium” piece brought to you by the late, great Sam Kinison. Kinison in true Sam fashion rushes the stage in the middle of Robert talking, takes over the podium, briefly roasts Englund, and goes on to present a tribute video to the fallen slasher, Freddy Krueger. All While Robert is laughing hysterically in the background. Priceless entertainment people.
The program also included make-up bits performed by special effects wizard Steve Johnson and the lovely Linnea Quigley, with sneak peeks for the upcoming and highly anticipated Addams Family movie. The Horror Hall of Fame 2 was every bit as fun as its predecessor the year prior. And some damn fine people got the recognition they so well deserved. 1991’s gallery of horror heroes included the following:
- Film- Texas Chainsaw Massacre
- Film- The Birds
- Publisher- EC Comics
- Production Company- Universal Studios
- Producer/ Director- Roger Corman
- Actor – Bela Lugosi
- Award for best movie of the year went to Silence of the Lambs. Nominees included were Misery, Child’s Play 2, Predator 2, and Jacob’s Ladder.
And well, maybe just relive it yourself! With a courtesy upload from Youtuber Doug Tilley, let us thank the Horror Gods for this little slice of treasure that once was, and maybe one day, can be again!