Terrifying viewers at home for his latest project was strictly a laughing matter for Jason Blum, who has produced hit nail-biting film franchises like “Paranormal Activity,” “The Purge” and “Insidious.”
As the executive producer of GSN’s new horror-themed game show “Hellevator,” Blum tells Made in Hollywood: Teen that audiences will be scared to their wits end because the program is as comical as much as it is creepy.
“The best scares come when there’s humor interlaced within them,” Blum reveals. “If you make things funny, the scares are much more effective because when people laugh they relax—and then they get more scared when they’re not ready for it.”
The GSN series, which premieres Wednesday, Oct. 21 at 8 p.m. (ET), follows teams of three friends who vie for a chance to earn up to $50,000 by competing through a series of challenges that parallel some frightful moments seen in horror flicks. Contestants enter an abandoned slaughterhouse by way of a haunted elevator (as in Hellevator) and attempt to make it through a course of gory challenges.
Naturally, horror movie fans were attracted to the opportunity to conquer the fright-fest brought to life. “We were looking for people who seemed fearless—we really wanted to challenge ourselves and get people scared who felt like they wouldn’t be scared of anything,” Blum says.
Even so, there’s no shortage of blood-curdling screams and tears.
“Those are the people that are usually crying within five minutes,” says Sylvia Soska, who hosts the series alongside her twin Jen (known as the “Twisted Twins”). The sisters, who have appeared in cult indie horror films, manipulate the macabre scenes throughout the game from a control center.
“You don’t walk out of Hellevator and look clean,” she adds. “You walk out and you look like hell.”
Whether the contestants suffer meltdowns or beat Blum and the Soskas at their own game, the real prize belongs to the viewer at home who gets the last laugh.