The middle of July is all peach pie and fresh tomato salads and lemonade in pitchers and glorious sunshine and creepy mansions and lurid tales and family secrets filled with mystery and cobwebs.
Of course, the "creepy mansions" and "cobwebs" fit into the summery equation if you're Universal Studios Hollywood and you're ramping up to Halloween Horror Nights, your annual maze-macabre event that regularly draws thousands of atmosphere-loving autumn aficionados.
For July is just about the time when the monster-famous theme park begins to reveal its upcoming fall-fearsome attractions. And the first reveal was just made at Comic-Con International in San Diego: "Crimson Peak," a maze based on the new Guillermo del Toro film, will be included in the 2015 Halloween Horror Nights spectacular.
It makes sense to not only make a reveal at Comic-Con, which is flush with horror fans, but the moment is right time-wise, too. It may be summertime by the calendar, but the yearly maze-tastic happening's opening night is only two months away, and the hammers are already humming away at various on-the-rise mazes around the Universal City-based park.
"Guillermo del Toro Presents Crimson Peak: Maze of Madness" will be "a three-dimensional living representation of the film," a movie that stars Tom Hiddleston, Jessica Chastain, Mia Wasikowska, and Charlie Hunnam. A maze of Allerdale Hall, a rambling country manse, will include "a labyrinth of paranormal tortured souls" and "vengeful, ghostly forms."
Best take another sip of cooling lemonade, if this spooky summer reveal has given you a few willies.
There are more maze reveals to come in the coming weeks, but consider this: The Guillermo del Toro-helmed film has an Oct. 16 release date in theaters, but Halloween Horror Nights attendees can enter the world four weeks ahead of when movie goers everywhere else will experience it.
Such are the pleasures of calling Southern California home; we can so often get to connect with a film first.
And such are the pleasures of a Southern California summer. Lemonade and ice cream and sunshine are part of it, yes, but so are the spirited, scary announcements rolling out from our Halloween-prepping theme parks.