The man behind the ultimate house of horror
Eli Roth scares the bejesus out of us. He’s given us the movie franchise Hostel and horror flicks Cabin Fever and The Last Exorcism. Now, Roth brings his twisted imagination and scare tactics to life with the opening of Eli Roth’s Goretorium. This year-round multilevel maze operates under the guise that you’re a guest at the dark and deadly Delmont Hotel, where gruesome occurrences and a serial-killing family put your mettle to the test. Using special effects, haunted sets, animatronics and live actors, Roth has created a truly modern haunted house. Kiko Miyasato sat down with Roth to see just how scary it really is.
Q: Why choose Las Vegas for Goretorium?
A: People come to Vegas for a wild night and to have fun. There’s such energy here that goes 365 days a year and 24 hours a day. … And what’s more fun then going through a haunted house with your date or friends? This has been a dream of mine for 10 years. I thought, there has to be a place like this in Las Vegas, a place where people come year-round, and they’re here to have a good time.
Q: Aren’t haunted houses just for Halloween?
A: Watching horror movies for me is a year-round experience. I think horror fans don’t only watch them in October. I think if there’s a good horror movie in January or March, they’ll watch it. And these haunted attractions are such big business; it’s one of the only recession-proof businesses. And Halloween has become only second to Christmas. … People love the scare experience and a lot of the times they don’t get to go to these attractions because they don’t live near them or the lines are too long. And they miss it and have to wait till next Halloween. Last year, I did a Hostel maze at Universal Horror Nights and it was the most attended maze. We had between 2,000 and 2,100 people an hour going through it and it was only open 18 nights. I thought, “God, people should be able to go through something like this every night.”
Q: So, just how scary is the Goretorium?
A: We want this to be the premier haunted house experience. We want it to be the scariest place in the world. I want every horror fan in the world to talk about it. It’s Disney World for horror.
Q: On a scale of 1 to 10?
A: It’s terrifying. It’s an 11. I want the most hardened horror fan to come out feeling like they need to change their underwear. We have a hazmat team on standby to clean things up.
Q: So, there are emergency exits if one gets too scared?
A: Yes, of course, we have to. But we’ll also have guides and we will have cameras in every room so if someone really, truly freaks out—I mean like they’re losing their s**t—we’ll be able to go in and pull them out.