Carnival of Souls is a 1962 American independent horror film starring Candace Hilligoss. Produced and directed by Herk Harvey for an estimated $33,000, the film did not gain widespread attention when originally released, as a double feature with The Devil’s Messenger; today, however, it is a cult classic. Its plot follows a young woman whose life is disturbed after a car accident, finding herself drawn to the pavilion of an abandoned carnival.
Set to an organ score by Gene Moore, Carnival of Souls relies more on atmosphere than on special effects to create a mood of unease and foreboding. The film has a large cult following and is occasionally screened at film and Halloween festivals. It has been cited as an important influence on the films of both David Lynch and George A. Romero.