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Tampa Theatre reveals terrifying schedule for A Nightmare on Franklin Street

illuminated marquee at the Tampa Theatre.
Photo by Andrew Harlan

It’s spooky season in the city of Tampa, and that much is evident with the return of Tampa Theatre’s A Nightmare on Franklin Street. A host of classic horror flicks, ghost tours, spooky family classics and more will hit the stage and screen at our downtown movie palace this October. In late October, the hair-raising historic landmark goes 100% Halloween with classic horror movies, guest stars, ghost tours, spine-chilling stage shows, spooky storytelling, and family-friendly frights.

Side note: Tampa Theatre officially turns 97 this October! Get those birthday candles ready, Tampa! The 2023 series will fill Tampa’s most historic – and most haunted – movie palace with all of your Nightmare favorites like classic horror films and creepy cult favorites; two screenings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show with a live floor cast and audience partici… (Say it! Say it!) … pation; plenty of Ghosts of Tampa Theatre Tours; the elegantly gothic stylings of Phantasmagoria with an Edgar Allen Poe-themed mainstage show; an evening of spooky Campfire Stories under the Theatre’s star-lit sky; family-friendly “Mummy & Me” screenings with FREE tickets for kids 12 and younger; and so much more.


inside an old theatre with a blue velvet curtain on stage and a pianist at the center
Photo via Tampa Theatre

A Nightmare on Franklin Street is a Tampa tradition

My personal favorite event. the balcony to backstage ghost tours, will run from October 13-31. Tickets are available now – reserve your spot before they sell out.

On Sunday, Oct. 15, join Tampa Theatre at 7pm for an evening of Campfire Stories around the campfire under the movie palace’s iconic star-lit sky. The Storytellers of Old Tampa Bay are back with a family-friendly program of PG tales appropriate for all ages (who don’t mind having a chill sent down their spine). Tickets are $10 for general admission and FREE for Tampa Theatre Members.

Film Tampa Bay will sponsor a FREE screening of Cannibal Comedian (2023) at 7:00pm Thursday, Oct. 19 as part of the “Film Tampa Bay Presents” series, which celebrates films and filmmakers with ties to the Tampa Bay area. The first 150 to arrive will also receive free popcorn and soda, and all are invited to stick around after the film for an audience Q&A with the local filmmakers.


A spooky film paired with the mighty Wurlitzer organ

On Friday, Oct. 20, the Theatre’s artist-in-residence Dr. Steven Ball will accompany a new 4k restoration of the silent suspense film The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920) with an original score on the Mighty Wurlitzer Theatre Organ at 7:00pm.

Then, Tampa Theatre welcomes back the “Cheap Little Punks” shadow cast on Saturday, Oct. 21 for TWO screenings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975) at 7:00 & 11:00pm.

They also have plenty of screenings of lesser-known titles like Slotherhouse, Pulgasari, and Night of the Lepus – a total of a fear-inducing 46 events over the 19-day series. 

You can see a full lineup of films, ghost tours, and events by visiting Tampa Theatre’s website.

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