Before 2006, horror fans in the D.C. Metro area were left without a festival to call their own. Luckily, the Spooky Movie Film Festival came along to show them what they were missing. What is perhaps more surprising, given the four years that the show’s been in existence, is the popularity that the festival has achieved worldwide.In the last four years, the festival has hosted D.C., east coast, and even world premieres of American and foreign horror flicks. Casual attendees should be warned that these films run the gamut from horrifically hilarious to dark and disturbing. However, there have been family-friendly events at the festival in the past, such as when popular 1970s-1980s children’s host Captain 20 hosted a matinee of freaky family films at the 2006 festival, and when performance artist Bobgolem composed a live soundtrack to the classic silent film Der Golem.In addition to full-length features, the festival also hosts award-winning shorts, horror-themed music, and appearances by horror luminaries. For instance, Count Gore De Vol, played by Dick Dyszel, is the official host for the festival. A television show called Monster Madhouse Live helps support the show, featuring public domain genre films as well as shorts from the festival. The show has been featured on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.The 2011 Spooky Movie International Horror Film Festival will take place October 13-16the perfect way to get prepared for Halloween. Last year featured an opening night screening of the new horror comedy Tucker & Dale vs Evil, starring Tyler Labine, Alan Tudyk, and Jesse Moss. What surprises will show up at this year’s festival? Those with strong stomachs should keep checking the festival’s website to find out.