This week, Shudder, the premium thriller, horror, and supernatural streaming service backed by AMC Networks, has released the BBC’s infamous faux-paranormal documentary Ghostwatch for the first time ever in the United States.
Produced as a part of the BBC anthology series Screen One, it was presented as a live television investigation of paranormal activity, not as a scripted TV movie. It was banned after the premiere as a result of disturbed viewers making an estimated 30,000 panicked calls to the BBC switchboard in a single hour. Ghostwatch was never re-aired on UK television, it never aired in the United States, and has never been made available on home video in the U.S.
The premiere of Ghostwatch on Shudder marks the second time in two months the streaming service has debuted a largely unseen piece of genre history for U.S. viewers; Shudder premiered Ken Russell’s controversial 1971 masterpiece The Devils in March, making it widely available for the first time in decades.