News / Utah / 

Is your Utah hometown the backdrop of a horror movie?

The diverse scenery of Utah has been the backdrop of a variety of horror films throughout the years.

The diverse scenery of Utah has been the backdrop of a variety of horror films throughout the years. (latenitevideo via YouTube)



Estimated read time: 3-4 minutes

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah is home to world-class ski resorts, five national parks and a rich history. The diverse scenery of the state has also been the backdrop of a variety of horror films throughout the years.

The Utah Division of State History teamed up with the Utah Film Commission to create an interactive map to show the horrors of the state. See if the local haunts of your hometown made the cut.

Psychological

Films fitting into the genre of psychological horror may be all too real for Utahns. In the 2010 film "Frozen," three skiers are stranded on a chairlift and must make life-or-death choices. The psychological thriller is backdropped in Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest and Snowbasin Resort.

"The Mine" alludes to the historical background of Park City, which was largely a mining town before its present-day ski resort reputation. The 2012 movie's storyline follows a group of friends who decide to follow the tracks of the haunted Jarvis Mine, where a family was murdered 100 years ago. The film includes scenes filmed in Heber City, Fairfield, Utah County, and Ophir, Tooele County.

Slasher

Any horror film lover knows the legendary slasher villain Michael Myers, but did Utahns know if he wandered their neighborhood?

"Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers," "Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers" and "Halloween 6: The Curse of Michael Myers" all were filmed in northern Utah. The classic franchise features scenes at the Ogden airport, Brigham City, Layton, Orem, the Cottonwood Paper Mill and Penney's Gas Station.

Southern Utahns don't have to travel across the state for their horror movie fill. Slasher movies filmed in southern Utah include "Slaughter of the Innocents," "Death Street" and "Red Canyon." The iconic image of Arches National Park takes on a darker role, appearing in "Death Street."

Monster

While filmed in 1994, Stephen King's "The Stand" may take on an eerie reality amid COVID-19. The TV-mini series documents the divide of the world's remaining population after a deadly plague and the eventual battle between the two. The series features '80s heartthrob Molly Ringwald who also starred in "Sixteen Candles," "The Breakfast Club" and "Pretty in Pink."

Backdrops of the series include locations in Ogden, Tooele, Midvale and the Olmsted Hydroelectric Plant.

Some other films starred in the category include "Snow Beast," "Bats," "Into the Grizzly Maze" and "Ice Spiders."

Paranormal

The 1962 film "Carnival of Souls" tells the story of a woman who's drawn to an abandoned carnival following a terrible car crash. The black and white film is full of ghosts, one being the Saltair Pavilion which burned in an arson fire in 1970.

Another older horror movie filmed in Utah includes "The Car." When a vehicle seems to take on a life of its own and terrorize a small desert town, the sheriff must take action to stop it. Scenes of the paranormal movie include Zion National Park, Hurricane Bridge, Snow Canyon and Kanab.

Sci-fi

Salt Lake City is the backdrop of several science fiction horror films. Aliens rampage and humanity enters a post-apocalyptic world in the films: "Area 51," "Unearthed," "S. Darko," "Species" and "Damnation Valley."

The full list of films and their locations can be found at utah.maps.arcgis.com.

If you're interested in taking the fun from the screen to the streets, visit our 2021 guide to haunted houses, spook alleys and other Halloween horrors.

Related Stories

SIGN UP FOR THE KSL.COM NEWSLETTER

Catch up on the top news and features from KSL.com, sent weekly.
By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to KSL.com's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

KSL Weather Forecast