A deep-sea submarine has captured a horrifying first on film: a look at the “black sea devil” anglerfish in its natural habitat.

Researchers at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute in California used a robotic vessel to get a glimpse of the little beast, which can be seen fluttering with its luminous lure and splintery teeth in the video below.

Though the fanged fish has been featured in movies like "Finding Nemo" and has made appearances in ocean-themed nightmares across the world, this is the first time the species has been filmed down in the black abyss where it attracts its prey.

The angler in the video is about nine centimetres long, according to narrator and senior scientist Bruce Robison.

The fish, which resembles a detached, silently screaming head, is not particularly agile, Robison says. It’s an “ambush predator,” and it hunts by mesmerizing its meals with the light dangling from its head.

The team also knows the specimen in question is a female, because males don’t sport the flashy lure, and aren’t particularly equipped to hunt. Instead, Robison says, the smaller, masculine version of this freaky fish is mostly concerned with mating.