It started on Thursday, and I’m afraid it will continue on through the weekend. The Fifth Annual New York City Horror Film Festival is haunting Lower Manhattan, bringing the best new and classic horror films to Gotham City.

If you happen to be in the Big Apple this weekend, you might want to stop by Tribeca Cinemas (Tribeca Cinemas, 54 Varick Street) to catch a frightful flick or two.

“With over fifty feature and short films in our competition series, the 2006 Festival will be our biggest to date,” says Festival Director Michael J. Hein. In addition, the festival will “offer screenings of some of the most buzzed new horror films in the world. Along with a few classic horror films in our invited programs, this year’s festival will be an event horror fans and filmmakers will not want to miss!”

Films come from throughout the United States and Europe, and in many cases are making their world premiere at this prestigious and respected horror film festival.

Tomorrow (Saturday, Oct. 21) will feature the 2006 NYC Horror Film Festival Lifetime Achievement Award honoring Director/Producer/Writer Mick Garris (The Stand, The Shining, and Masters of Horror). Also, at 5:30pm tomorrow, the festival will screen Rob Zombie’s The Devil’s Rejects: Directors Cut. Ken Foree, one of the stars of the film, will introduce the film and answer questions after the screening.

On Sunday, Oct. 24, there will be a Filmmakers Discussion Panel with panelists Michael Gingold (Editor of Fangoria Magazine) Bill Lustig (Director/Producer), Betsy Palmer (Friday the 13th), Jeff Lieberman (Satan’s Little Helper, Squirm).

The New York City Horror Film Festival is presented by Moodude Films and sponsored by HorrorNet.TV and Dark Castle Entertainment. For more information, visit www.nychorrorfest.com.