Pumpkin Head Awards 2022



WINNERChateau Sauvignon: terroir – “Wow.”

Nominees: Abigail – “Bold on an ethics and philosophical level, Abigail touches more of the ‘mankind’ ideology horrors above all, and it gets under your skin in the best of ways.”, The Fallen Elves – “Gothic and unique – something that really stands apart from other entries, especially with its blend of young performers, Christmas film as a theme and use of creature feature vibes.”, Frequency – “Tapping into one of the simplest forms of terror – that of control being lost – is boldly explored in this fantastically well produced short film.”, Totem Goat – “A fantastic kick to the teeth.”


  • Films

Last Night Family Reunion – Nominated: Best Actress (Laura Newman) – “Newman braves her performance with a great sense of scream queen style. It’s comedic and memorable, and very appropriate for this subgenre delight!” 

Abigail – Nominated: Best Actor (Tommy Hoesley), Nominated: Best Screenplay – “An interesting concept that is greatly enhanced by its two leads (especially the slightly aggressive and domestic performance delivered by Hoesley). The film could have been further enhanced with a more unique filming and editing style, which would have made it one of the best entries of the season due to it’s overall strong points.”

You’ve Got Mail – Nominated: Best Actor (River Cy Denman) – “Denman’s performance is almost like that of a silent film. He provides a lot of dynamics within his facial expressions and physicality.” 

Just Breathe – Winner: Budget – less than $1,000, Nominated: Best Ensemble Cast – “Robust for it’s budget, this film excels at two key points above all: 1) the film’s use of locales, which are very layered and textured, and 2) the overall consistency of performances and overall feeling of tone. It is enjoyable, and a lot of fun.” 

Come Sit With Us – Nominated: Budget – less than $1,000 – “With a very classical day/night setting, Come Sit With Us has a great stylization that is very aptly used for the horror genre.” 

What Stays Behind – Nominated: Best Director, Nominated: Best Cinematography, Winner: Special Mention – Best Two Handler Cast – “Bold, stylish and engaging, this emotional short is a proper little horror bite. It has a great look about it, and a really strong emotional backbone within its acting.” 

Ostinato – Nominated: Best Best Actress (Sandra Saad) – “With a strong lead performance, this film propels comfortable-holiday-home into creepy-destination with great ease.” 

The Fallen Elves – Nominated: Budget – less than $1,000, Winner: Special Mention – Best Production Design – “Impressively mounted, this low budget short is connivingly fun and Gothic.”

The Washerwoman – Nominated: Best Actress (Camilia O’Grady) – “O’Grady provides a consistent performance which highlights the isolation of paranoia.” 

Frequency – Winner: Short/Feature Film: Budget – between $1,000 – $5,000, Nominated: Best Ensemble Cast, Nominated: Best Cinematography, Nominated: Best Director – “Frequency is a showstopper of a short. Beautifully shot, nicely paced and convincing.”

Free Range – Nominated: Short/Feature Film: Budget – between $1,000 – $5,000, Winner: Best Cinematography – “Smooth to the eye, and delicately delivered – Free Range is more than organic.”

Caring – Nominated: Best Directors, Winner: Best Actress (Fran Wolfman) – “Bold and memorable (no pun intended), this film hit where most horror films don’t want to – the potential inevitable experience of our own destiny… the decline of the worlds we inhabit which we have made for ourselves. It is, at its core, very moving.” 

Chateau Sauvignon: terroir – Nominated: Best Screenplay, Nominated: Best Score, Nominated: Best Cinematography, Nominated: Best Director, Nominated: Short/Feature Film: Budget – more than $5,000 – “Bold, impactful, epic. Actually disturbing.”

Blue – Winner: Best Score, Nominated: Short/Feature Film: Budget – between $1,000 – $5,000 – “Produced with a great style, this film boasts a strong use of location, minimalist cast and impressive musical tones.”

No Way Out – Nominated: Best Ensemble Cast, Winner: Best Actor (Josh Altenburg), Nominated: Best Score – “Solid great horror material right here.” 

Matches – Nominated: Short/Feature Film: Budget – more than $5,000, Winner: Best Screenplay – “Packing a lot of period piece charm vibes, Matches is pure creep material.”

I’ll Never Be Alive Again – Winner: Best Ensemble Cast, Nominated: Best Score, Nominated: Best Director, Nominated: Short/Feature Film: Budget – more than $5,000 – “Bold with its content and light-handed style, this short is a fun experiment in philosophical and ethical dilemmas associated with quarantine and life after one’s death.”

Happy Anniversary – Nominated: Best Screenplay – “Fantastically comical and horrifying at the same time.”

The Creepers – Winner: Short/Feature Film: Budget – more than $5,000 – “Epic and impressive with its young cast, this horror short feels more like a feature experience than a short film.” 

PUTREFIXION a video of Nina Temich – Special Mention: Winner – Best Experimental Film – “With some wild camera tools, this film is horrifying and intimate and dark.”

The Playland – Nominated: Best Cinematography, Nominated: Best Director – “With a cult vibe, this film comfortably slips into very uncomfortable spaces in the mind. Lovely delivery by its cast, and nicely shot.” 

Totem Goat – Winner: Best Director, Nominated: Best Actress (Jennipher Foster) – “Leading lady and director Foster brings about some ugly uncomfortable feelings in this project, and it is all great fun – in fact, I’d go so far to say that she is perhaps best suited to feature film projects… as her work is a tad bit too grand and engaging for just short films.”

  • Web series 

No entries. 


Winner: The Humming – “Moody, stylish and thrilleresque – the character posters of The Humming invite us into a dimly lit violent smoke and gun-filled frenzy. It is one fantastic marketing pull.” 

Nominees: Final Girl, How to Build a Bride, Runwunsch, The Mysterious Death of Lord Harrington, Badlands


Best Scare

Winner: Final Girl – “Stylish and character dynamic filled, this situational horror is a great read and would be a fun indie film!” 

Nominees: The Basement Man – “A fun family horror for all to enjoy… recalls the tone of Joe Dante’s films.”, The Creek – “Urban legends are a dying breed of sub-horror film genre, and this one is a lot of fun.”, Blood on Your Hands – “This giallo inspired script is more political machine than horror… but it has an undercurrent of bitterness and psychological unease, which is quite fun and exciting.”, Lookout – “Dense but rewarding, Lookout is a large scale indie with a unique lead persona.”, Vested – “Large in scale, but full of fun details – this script really tastes of the sub-genre of werewolf films and family dynamics in an old worldly settings that it is celebrating.”, The Mysterious Death of Lord Harrington – “Textured and rich, this script carries a great idea of the ‘period piece horror’ design, set within a modern setting. It’s exciting to see.”, The Door – “True story shorts are rare, and this one pumps a nice feeling of veoyerism into the sub-genre of the Thriller/Horror territory.” 

Best Script Technique

Winner: Dear Agony – “Oozing a great sense of persona, this noir styled horror leads the pack as a well-molded exercise in genre-mixing and emotional turmoil.” 

Nominees: Tramps Like Us – “Though a little on the short side of feature films, though very attuned to its era set runtime, this is one beautifully compiled script.”, Final Girl – “Malticulous with some of its script design and syntax, Final Girl has a great sense of style with its delivery.”, A Man and His Dog – “A complicated little treat awaits you here. This script is one of more unusual offerings we’ve had in recent seasons.”, Send Help! – “Full of very guttural moves, the highlight of this script is its marketability and the fun leading characters that provide a lot of entertainment value.”, The Shanta Chronicles – “Original and rich, this script is very well designed and quite large in production potential.”, Search Surface Sacrifice – “Considering this was written in a word document, but correctly designed to be the syntax of a script, it is an impressive and impactful presentation of a dreamy little horror.” 

Best Micro-Budget Script

Winner: Room Service – “A flat out fun read – clearly ready to be shot.”

Nominees: Homegrown – “Though there are many set pieces in this one, they all feel quite attainable within the indie micro-budget set up… making this one of the more shootable feature film scripts we’ve seen, and one – as we should note – with good marketing and promotional potential (which is to say it has a solid audience grabbing set up!”, The System – “Set within small confines, this script is an apt micro-budget event that can get thrown together without too much headache.”

Special Mention scripts

Frank and the Orbital Gap – Winner: Special Mention – Best Sci-Fi Horror Script – “Retro jackpot, this space venture recalls the pre-X Files era of alien paranoia in a great way.” 

Sweetbreads – Winner: Special Mention – Best Production Value Script – “With a unique location, this character lead page-turner is short and to the point.” 

Dead Time – Winner: Special Mention – Best Original Idea – “Though the Zombie genre by now has probably had too many resurrections, this iteration is a lot of fun and feels fresh.” 


Winner: Christmas Slasher * – “This film looks like one hell of a fun indie horror experience. I WANT TO SEE IT!” and Winner: A Week at Holly’s – “The slasher hangout indie film that we’ve been waiting for!”/ Nominees: Into The Devils Den, Sin Apple and Gallowmere

*please note: we do not usually hand out two winners, however – Christmas Slaher was a previous entrant who has changed their trailer. As their new version of the trailer is so fantastic we have awarded two trailers this season due to these unusual circumstances.

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