Many families make it a Halloween tradition to visit a local haunted attraction. You’re not the only one getting ready for a scary experience. Every year, actors dress up as demons and are assigned the task of scaring people silly. These actors have seen every possible spooky situation, from terrified guests to the tricks they use that really get under your skin. We took a look through a few past Reddit chats to find out the secrets of being a haunted house actor here.
1. They will do anything to scare you. The gym looked like an indoor cemetery. One Reddit user, who managed a haunted home, said that many families visited the haunted place and that the zombies scared the children. To play around with customers, he created a fake exit to lead into the next room. It led to another area of the building, but it looked like an exit. It was marked with a thank you sign. Please leave quietly. The children would feel relieved and would rush for the door. They would push the door open, and Leartherface’s chainsaw would blast right into their faces. Oh, no!
2. Sometimes, you can scare innocent passers-by.“I was a ghost train worker and was wearing a gimp disguise while waiting for customers to board. There was an outdoor restaurant right across the platform and two women were eating dinner. They faced the train station. They were standing directly in front of me, so I just stared at them with my mask on. I was busy talking, so they didn’t notice me for several minutes. The wait paid off as one of them saw me and shouted at the top of her lungs. Everybody else in the restaurant was shocked to see this. The other girl laughed [hysterically]. I waved and boarded the train.
3. Customers sometimes get so scared that they even attack actors.” I saw a girl about 90 pounds, soaking wet, who came at me like I was the worst thing in the world. It was her complete fear reaction. It is known as “fight or flight.”
Another commenter added his voice, admitting that he had previously attacked a haunted worker: “I’m no haunted worker or actor, but I did go to one when I was twelve. A dude ran on all fours from under a curtain while making ungodly sounds, and I kicked him in my throat before I could think.”
4. It is difficult to keep track of the time and workers when you work in a darkened room. One former employee of the haunted house explained that he noticed that the flow had slowed down to a trickle and then stopped completely. “I thought they were closing temporarily because it wasn’t too late in the night. It turned out that it had been closed for the night and everyone forgot I was still there. I sat there in a radiation suit for more than an hour, and nobody noticed that I had not come out.
5. 5. The actors will know your name and call it out in order to scare you.“I used to work at a haunted hotel-style haunted house. The front desk did ‘check in’, where people would provide their names. As they moved deeper into the house, the front desk man would run down to the basement (where the most disturbing things were, people, crawling around in the dark bits) and I would write “I see you [name]” on the wall with fake blood. They were amazed at the reactions.
6. Monsters are not for everyone.”I wasn’t the worker but once at Knott’s Scary Farm, a monster leaped out to scare me in a maze. He stared at her for a while, and she whispered to her, “Hey, can I ask how much you guys earn here?” I am interested in applying. “The monster replied in his normal voice, “Not a lot, but flexible hours.” It’s good to know!
7. Improvisation is a common skill for many actors.“I was a volunteer for the local haunted house and helped a girl to pee. Literally, all I did was to stand on the other side and give the evilest grin I could conjure. I dressed up as some crazy, blood-soaked mailman. I was told to be fearful and not given any instructions or lines. Poor girl came in and started screaming so loudly she had to wet her pants. Her boyfriend kept pushing her through my bedroom and into the next. It was quite an experience.
8. Heart attacks can happen, so staff should be prepared to deal with them.“It was in ’10 that I had my first heart attack. Although the ax was real, it was blunted. I spent over an hour in the hardware store, dragging various axes down and up the aisles to find the right sound. Since he entered the structure, I had been following him around with the ax. He eventually collapsed. Stop emergency. All lights on. Call 9-1-1. We had many people with CPR/first response experience who stepped in and took control. Their quick thinking helped him survive with no side effects. We went through the maze and reset it before moving on.”
9. They are there to scare you. But sometimes, they realize they have gone too far.”I am the only person responsible for providing years of therapy for a young boy.” His entire body spasmed, even though he didn’t speak a word. His skeleton seemed to be trying to get out of his soft tissues.
10. People who act hard will be targeted by workers.“Occasionally, we’d have one or two actors go look at the line and pick the tough guys in a group. The person who was feeling out the lines would then go back to the cast and say, “Okay, here’s a guy wearing a gray sweatshirt.” He told his friends that it wasn’t going to be scary. A few actors would go in the group to touch or play with the guests, and then that one man would make it even more difficult. The tough guy would run out of the way and scream 8 out of 10. We wouldn’t be as rough with someone who looks extremely scared.