In the hot, sticky humidity of New Orleans, a dark and twisted tale of vampires and circus freaks took shape, and the terrifying result is coming to a theater near you just in time for Halloween '09. Okay, it's not too terrifying -- it's PG-13, after all. But writer-director Paul Weitz has adapted the first four books of the 'Cirque du Freak' series by U.K. author Darren Shan, and on Oct. 23 you'll get your fill of bearded ladies, monkey girls, Willem Dafoe and other intriguing creatures, in 'The Vampire's Assistant.'

Moviefone was invited to the N'Awlins set last year to witness the creepy goings on (and conduct interviews in Evra the Snakeboy's tent, natch). What we learned might frighten and amaze you, but unlike a real sideshow, this thrill ride is free admission.