Inspiring chills at Halloween Horror Nights
There are some horrific things happening at night on Sentosa.
Halloween Horror Nights (HHN) is back and ready to shock and chill the hordes this Halloween season.
Now in it's fifth year HHN returns with some local twists, bringing the dark heart of heartland to Resorts World Sentosa.
The main entrance of this year's Halloween Horror Nights. TNP PHOTO: SUKMAWATI UMAR LITAK
There are seven areas designed to scare you out of your wits. These include four haunted houses — a HDB block infested by flesh-eating zombies; creepy, pitch-black passageways with dangling rat carcasses and hooded figures; a hell house filled with the heat on full and "paper servants" and the ruins of an MRT station inspired by tales of paranormal sightings.
This last house was inspired by the writings of Russell Lee, the man behind the popular series The Almost Complete Collection of True Singapore Ghost Stories (TSGS).
A man of mystery, he is also notable for always wearing a full mask, hat and gloves for all his public appearances.
The New Paper interviewed Lee about all things spooky...
PHOTO: FACEBOOK/ TRUE SINGAPORE GHOST STORIES
TNP: It’s been 26 years since your first TSGS book. Do you have any favourite stories from your collection?
LEE: I am loath to do that because it’s like choosing between your children. But if I had to pick three, I’d pick Bomoh Charles (Book 11), The Rich Poor Man (Book 18) and Raphael (Book 20).
TNP: What makes a good ghost story?
LEE: The fear factor is a key ingredient as is the craft of the storyteller. Add a pinch of humour, stir well and serve cold. It usually works.
TNP: Which do you think is the scariest Singapore ghost story?
LEE: Ghosts and spirits don’t have any nationality. But the area around (now defunct) Bidadari Cemetery was said to be one the scariest spots in Singapore.
TNP: Why do you think Singaporeans love ghost stories?
LEE: Singaporeans are in touch with their spiritual side. We embrace science but we are also mindful that there is another reality beyond the here-and-now.
TNP: The MRT Haunted House in HHN is based on your work. How involved were you in conceptualising the project?
LEE: I only provided the books. Full credit must go to the brilliant Halloween Horror Nights team for breathing life into the characters and creating the overarching apocalyptic blood moon theme.
TNP: Have you seen it yet? What was your favourite part?
LEE: I followed its conceptualisation and was there as it was built. But I declined to attend the preview because I wanted to experience the event as a paying customer. One of these nights, when the blood moon is hanging low, I’ll drop in for another visit.
TNP: What do you think makes a good haunted house?
LEE: I prefer my house to be rid of all unwanted guests, thank you very much. That’s the only kind of house I’d consider to be good.
I don't think any truly haunted houses stand much chance in urban Singapore. Space is at a premium and urban renewal is relentless. The dead have to make way for the living.
TNP: Can we expect any new TSGS books?
LEE: Yes. Book 24 was released just a few days ago. My aim is to reach Book 50 before I finally put down my pen, and take off my mask one last time…
The Halloween Horror Nights is now on at Universal Studios Singapore on selected nights until Oct 31.
Watch our walkthrough of the haunted houses...