As Halloween draws nearer, the ghosts and monsters begin to emerge and haunted houses, creepy corn mazes, and other scare-inducing attractions open their doors once more to flocks of haunt-hungry goers ready to be frightened. Like being scared? Are you an adrenaline junkie? Can you traverse the halls where zombies roam without batting an eye?
Try these attractions on for size.
Welcome back guest blogger Lindsey Lewis! Lindsey is a Web Contest Specialist at Mr. Costumes and Christmas Lights Etc.
It’s almost here, shuffling in the streets and leaving loose limbs behind. October 16th marks the premiere of The Walking Dead Season 2, and the excitement is rising like the dead bodies.
Many people have taken an interest in the AMC original show based on a comic book of the same name. The story follows Rick Grimes, played by British actor Andrew Lincoln, as he and his family try to survive the apocalypse filled with the animated corpses of his previous society. What many people don’t know, however, is that The Walking Dead was actually filmed in the city in which it was set: Atlanta, GA.
A year and a half ago, I was looking for a summer job in between college semesters. I had worked at Netherworld Haunted House part time the year before, but they weren’t open during the summer to regular haunters and I needed some work. One of my Netherworld coworkers mentioned they were applying to be a zombie on a television show and gave me the name of the casting company. I sent in my headshot and bodyshot (taken outside in my yard that very day, so it was not at all professional), my height and weight, and my clothing sizes and waited for an answer.
I was one of the few hundred called in for what the AMC was calling “Zombie School,” a nifty little training session where choreographers literally taught us how zombies moved. Initially we watched movies filled with zombies and took notes on their movements, then we went through obstacle courses meant to determine our skill. All the while, directors, including makeup pro Greg Nicotero, were standing by and making notes on their favorite potential zombies. Greg pulled me aside that day when I said my favorite zombie movie was the Spanish “Rec” and told me he wanted me for a featured zombie role. I wasn’t quite sure what that meant, but I was excited nonetheless. continue reading this entry »
Guest Blogger: Lindsey Lewis, Web Contest Specialist at Mr. Costumes and Christmas Lights Etc.
Every year since I was a child, I looked forward to Halloween. What wasn’t to love? Costumes, free candy, time to play with your friends, and colder weather as fall turned to winter. There were no complaints from this kid when October rolled around. Of course, that had a lot to do with my favorite holiday, Halloween, and, whether I dressed as one of the numerous Disney princesses or one of my mother’s homemade black cats, I loved Halloween costumes so much that they left a lasting impression on me.
Years later, when I was much “too old” for Halloween (as they say) and I was trying to decide what I wanted to do with my life, I went right back into trick-or-treating. At first it was merely a college job; I worked for two different haunted houses, one at the Children’s Museum in Macon and the other the world famous Netherworld Haunted House in Atlanta, Georgia. “Professional zombie” just had a nice ring to it.
Meanwhile, I was trying to obtain an English degree. I certainly didn’t think my English degree would end up with my working in the Halloween industry–or working anywhere else for that matter. However, my love for Halloween didn’t diminish in college as much as I worked and scared and dressed like a dead girl. Instead, it increased, and I found myself traveling around the United States to costuming conventions and making my own outfits as a seamstress.
Upon the dreaded graduation, I started my job search. I had an impressive resume under my belt so long as I could find some Halloween-related work. Whether by chance or Halloween luck, a local Halloween costume company, Mr. Costumes, was hiring writers. Not only would I utilize my degree but also I would work with the holiday I was most passionate about. Since graduating, I have been a writer at Mr. Costumes focusing on web content, blogging, and the social media campaign. To say Halloween is every day for me now would be an understatement. I work closely with the costumes I love and spend a good portion of my day dreaming up grand Halloween parties.
If you want to work like it’s Halloween all year round, open yourself up to some new experiences. Here are some jobs that will have you working closely with the industry:
- Get a job at a Halloween store and become familiar with the products.
- Work as a haunter at a haunted house. Make sure you keep your eyes open and your hands ready to work. Learning to make Halloween props and costumes can be a lucrative business.
- Offer to be an extra on horror themed movies and television shows. Getting experience in the industry is key. (Remember ‘professional zombie’? It wasn’t so much a joke.)
- Visit industry conventions like HauntCon to learn more about a life in the Halloween industry.
- Watch out for awesome opportunities. You never know what’s out there!
Halloween has become the second biggest holiday in the United States, second only to Christmas. With a business this big and lucrative, there are jobs out there. If you dream of working in the Halloween industry, never give up. There is a place for you, too.