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Are you ready to make your own horror film? Here are 400+ horror assets that add thrills and thrills to the project.

Over the past few years we've written and created a tremendous amount of content about Halloween and horror-themed filmmaking. So I thought to myself, why not pull it all together and break down all of the elements and insights we released about making your own horror movie? First, let's talk a little about the horror genre and how to create something that scares you.

Horror genre breakdown

The horror genre can be divided into several subgenres. Image via Image Ten / Kobal / Shutterstock.

Like any genre, horror can be broken down into several sub-genres. Horror is about scaring your audience, but there are several different ways you can scare your audience. It is important to understand these differences so that you can include, exclude, or ignore entirely as you write your next masterpiece. So let's discuss the subgenres!

  • Slasher: Think of John Carpenter & # 39; s Halloween as the slasher who inspired a million slashers. The idea is simple: a serial killer kills everyone in their own way while trying to get on to the film's hero.
  • zombie: This is self-explanatory, but zombie horror is arguably the most popular sub-genre of horror. If you're looking for some truly incredible inspiration on a budget, George A. Romero's Night of the Living Dead (1968) is the place for you.
  • people: This subgenre offers the exploration of natural, rural regions and historical horrors. You know, think of folklore! We actually made a complete guide to this subgenre! You can find some current examples in Ari Aster's Midsommar or in the original Wicker Man.
  • body: Time to get weird. Body horror reflects the audience as we need to investigate what can go wrong with our bodies. There are often monsters, creatures, and possessions in these films. For good examples of body horror, see The Fly, Alien (yes, it's body horror!), Or Videodrome.
  • Found footage: This one is pretty self explanatory. Made famous by the Blair Witch Project, the characters in the film often have cameras in hand and tell the story themselves. Personally, I find these films the most terrifying of all subgenres and I can't even explain why.

Now that we know the basics of horror movies, let's look at some free assets that can add to the terror in your own horror movie.

FREE Mysterious Nebula Overlays


Fog is a versatile tool for filmmakers. It can add mystery and horror to a scene, add sadness to drama, or simply add production value to your shoot. When making a horror film, fog creates a threatening feeling in the audience as it creates the greatest fear of all – the fear of the unknown. This free overlay package is very easy to use. So keep that in mind when taking photos and adjusting the lighting setting for a fog-friendly environment.

FREE volume / dust light package

Fog overlays

Add a threatening feel to your project with some fog overlays and volumetric lighting. Image via Brilliant Eye.

Download the Volumetric Light Pack

Much like fog overlays, volumetric light can add a threatening, unknown weight to your scene. Imagine a character walking through an old house while the killer lurks nearby. Volumetric lighting and dust overlays in the scene can make the house look like it has been empty for a long time with dust floating in the air.

These elements work in Premiere Pro, After Effects, FCPX, and most other NLEs. They're free so you can add them in and play around with them to see if they fit the scene. Unless? Take them out!

Carnage Blood Pack

Horror means blood! I mean, it doesn't always mean blood, but you probably need some fake blood to be thrown somewhere in your movie. Whether it's knife wounds, gunshots, or monster slaughter, there are ways to avoid breaking your budget on detonators and practical effects that messed you up for one reason or another. This pack allows you to cast the clips and composite on the footage seamlessly. If you need a tutorial on adding these assets to your workflow, click the link below!

At the moment we are offering fifteen% out on the Carnage Pack and all Halloween video clips on Shutterstock! This voucher is valid until November 30, 2020. Standard online licenses only, excluding custom and enterprise pricing. Use the promo code SPOOKY15 at checkout.

80 FREE Cinematic Ominous Sounds and Atmospheres


The score of a horror film is just as important as the graphics (if not more). Controlling an audience's terror is made infinitely easier when you can work with a scary soundscape that builds up and swells at the times you need. Think of these noises as if you're telling your audience how to feel.

Best Halloween / horror music

Horror music tracks

PremiumBeats huge selection of horror-themed tracks ranges from traditional to weird. Image via ironica.

If you're more of a traditional scoring approach, we have a huge selection of horror / Halloween-inspired royalty-free tracks that you can use in your movie. We have playlists that range from traditional, string-heavy sounds to more Stranger Things-y synth-inspired tracks.

FREE promotional items

Action elements

Action is an essential element in almost every genre of film.


One element of horror that I think is being overlooked is the action element. The genre itself requires a certain amount of action – characters get killed, killed, and / or run away from something that tries to kill them. Whether you're doing a slasher or a zombie flick, at some point you're going to need sparks, bumps, dust, and smoke effects. You may only need an item or two as there are usually a limited number of moments of action in horror. However, it's important to make them as believable as possible to really engage your audience.

Adding practical effects

Let's move away from post-production resources and let's get into practical effects! Robbie Janney did this ridiculous tutorial last year to demonstrate how easy it is to create body props for your next bloody scene. Ingredients are super simple – just throw in alginate molding powder and water. From there, you'll need to paint the body part (in this case he made a hand) so that it recreates the actor's own body part. Additionally, Robbie shows how to create fake blood and guts. It's great fun and cheap! If you're doing a zombie streak this tutorial is for you.

The greatest horror movie tutorial

Now I just couldn't record this video. David F. Sandberg could be my all time favorite YouTuber. The guy doesn't just go for a walk (directing big films like Shazam and Lights Out), he only gets what YouTube is supposed to be. His short films (published on his channel) are incredibly well made and effective. However, he always follows them with a guide, and they are everything you want – and more. If you are interested in making a good horror film check out their videos, get inspired, take what you have learned and apply it to your own story.

Looking for more free stuff? We have it here.


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