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The villains of the upcoming horror movie The Strangers: Chapter 1 showed up in character at Seattle ECCC event

The makers of the horror franchise The Strangers are looking to bring the fear to fans, even before they watch the new movie

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The whole point of The Strangers horror movie franchise is to prove that nowhere is safe. That can mean your home, an Airbnb, or as the star and producer of the newest chapter just showed fans at Emerald City Comic Con 2024.

The Strangers: Chapter 1 star Madelaine Petsch (Riverdale) and Courtney Solomon were recently at Seattle's premiere entertainment expo to discuss their love for the original Strangers film and tease their addition to the lore. Eventually, the pair started taking questions from the audience, and soon after, something happened that felt just a little too close to their favorite horror franchise.

Two Strangers cosplayers, dressed as the Man in the Mask and Pin-Up girl, respectively, approached the mic where fans could ask questions. After the moderator enthusiastically called out their costumes, the time came for them to speak.

But they didn't. They stood stock still, silent, staring.

"Do you have a question for us?" Petsch asked after a moment as the Strangers continued to their unwavering gaze. The mood of the room began to tense, audience members nervously watching the unexpected questioners.

"I'm getting a little uncomfortable," Petsch tried again, "Do you want to take your masks off so we can chat?"

Still nothing. In what became clear was a staged event to promote the film, producer Solomon also appeared visibly uncomfortable, laughing nervously and keeping his eyes fixed on the Strangers. For a few more long, chilling seconds, the audience and panelists sat rapt, waiting for the Strangers to do absolutely anything. And then the room went dark.

"Can we get the lights back on?" says Petsch, a strain in her voice. Her request was answered quickly, the lights returned and the audience could once again see the star, producer, and moderator at the front of the room.

But the Strangers were nowhere to be found.

Now, if you ask me, the situation feels just a little too coincidental. Some perfectly costumed Strangers cosplayers show up for a promo about their next movie and have control of the lights in the room? This is a rare kind of marketing maneuver.

The Strangers: Chapter 1 stalks into theaters May 17, 2024.

Get fully immersed in ECCC 2024 with Popverse's coverage of the event. From main stage panel livestreams to backstage interviews, on-the-floor coverage, news, cosplay galleries, and all the major panels we'll be m ocderating! We also have a list of the ECCC 2024 artist alley and the big booths to expect. We've even got you covered on where to eat near the convention center.

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Grant DeArmitt avatar

Grant DeArmitt

Contributing writer

Grant DeArmitt (he/him) likes horror, comics, and the unholy pairing of the two. He has written for Nightmare on Film Street and Newsarama, despite their better judgement. He lives in Brooklyn with his partner, Kelsey, and corgi, Legs.