On October 9th, After Dark Films kicked off their popular 8 Films To Die For series with a party of epic proportions. The main event was the crowning of their newest spokesmodel, or the After Dark Films’ “Scream Queen To Die For” competition. Over the past month or so, contestants have submitted videos vying for the title and a cash prize of $10,000.
This year After Dark crowned not one, but two Scream Queens. Noted drag performer Marta Beatchu and Midwestern horror actress, Haley Jay Madison were both awarded the title and the $10,000 prize.
Hailing from Dayton, Ohio, Madison is somewhat of a staple in the underground horror community. At only 23, Madison has acted in over seventeen films, and we’ve compiled her five best performances.
An expansion of the independent hit Found, Arthur Cullipher’s flick Headless has been taking the independent circuit by storm. The film attempts to capture the exploitative nature of the films of yesteryear, and Madison is captivating to watch as the “Punk chick.” This is a film that will appeal to even the sickest of gorehounds, and Madison’s death is some incredibly gruesome goodness.
Dayton, Ohio’s own Henrique Couto has been using Madison in his films for many years, but it’s her performance as “Tara” in the segment ‘Worth the Wait’ for the anthology film Scarewaves that truly shows her talents. Madison plays the object of affection for a man cheating on his wife. Her segment is easily the strongest of the entire anthology and it’s due in large part to the alluring nature of Haley Jay Madison. We should be actively rooting against her home wrecking character, but she’s so likable that it’s impossible not to hope she makes it out alive.
Experimental cinema is often one of the most overlooked, but Dustin Mills’ Applecart is something all cinephiles need to witness. A psychosexual portmanteau, all of the actors within the film have no lines, and wear white masks with features drawn on. Madison stars in three of the segments playing a teenage girl exploring her sexuality, a caretaker for an elderly man, and a kidnapped worker. Without the ability to talk, the physicality that Madison presents creates three wildly different characters. The subject matter of this film is tough, and tackles situations that most actresses would never explore, but Madison is absolutely showstopping in this film.
02) CHOPPING BLOCK
Joshua Hull has been putting Indiana horror in the spotlight for many years, but his slasher/comedy flick Chopping Block stars Haley Jay Madison as the final girl. Chopping Block follows five kidnappers (and one slasher villain) all vying after Madison to make her their victim. Madison is surrounded by over-the-top characters, and her reserved performance allows her to show a different side to her skills…and a scream that’s a force to be reckoned with.
01) KILL THAT BITCH
Of all of Haley Jay Madison’s performances, her work in Dustin Mills’ Kill That Bitch is easily her strongest. The film is brutal, at times sleazy, and yet Madison brings an authenticity to her character “Addison” that really shows the potential Madison has to become a bonafide Scream Queen. Haley Jay Madison handles relentless and difficult material with ease, and gives a fearless performance that needs to be seen to be believed.
Haley Jay Madison can also be seen in the films Hunters, Primordial, In Memory Of, Babysitter Massacre, The Haunted House on Sorority Row, and starring in the upcoming film Her Name Was Torment II.
For more information on After Dark’s newest Scream Queen To Die For, you can follow her on twitter and instagram @hmadthebad.