While you may have enjoyed the plot and storyline of some horror movies, you probably never knew that some of those your favourite movies were inspired by real life happenings.
The Girl Next Door (2007)
This movie tells the story of two teenage girls who were orphaned by their parents’ death. They go to live with their aunt, and she holds them captive, beats them, and tortures them ultimately leading to their death.
This movie is based off of the real life story of Sylvia Likens. Her parents left her with a family friend while they travelled for work. Similar to the events in the movie, the family friend terrorized Sylvia and eventually killed her.
The Amityville Horror Films (1979 -2015), The Conjuring Films (2013-16), and Annabelle (2014)
In 1952 Ed Warren, a self-described “demonologist,” and his wife Lorraine, a “trance medium,” founded the New England Society for Psychic Research. Twenty years later, the Warrens investigated the Lutz family home on Long Island, New York, where six murders had occurred. That case inspired The Amityville Horror franchise.
The investigation conducted by the Warrens’ of similar ghostly events involving the Perron family home in 1971 which was turned into The Conjuring. And the movie Annabelle came from a “haunted doll” case that the Warrens investigated in 1970.
Peter Benchley, who wrote the 1974 novel Jaws, got the idea for a killer shark story after chartering boat rides with a fisherman named Frank “Monster Man” Mundus (who claimed he was the inspiration for the gruff character Captain Quint).
The book’s plot was inspired in part by the summer of 1916 when a rogue great white shark (da-dum) lurking in the waters (da-dum da-dum) off the Jersey shore killed five unlucky swimmers.
When a sheriff visited Ed Gein’s Wisconsin farm in 1957, he was expecting to find a robbery suspect. Instead, he stumbled upon a true house of horrors: there was a bowl made from a human skull—and a chair, lampshade, and a suit made out of skin.
After Gein was arrested, investigators discovered the remains of 10 women at his farm. He was committed to a mental institution for the rest of his life. In 1959 author Robert Bloch used Gein as the model for Norman Bates in his novel Psycho (including Gein’s unhealthy fascination with his domineering mother), and then Alfred Hitchcock turned it into a movie.
Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)
Texas Chainsaw Massacre is loosely based off of the murderer Ed Gein. He was active from 1954 to 1957 and he would wear his victims’ scalps and faces. The main difference between Gein and the Leatherface was that Gein used a gun to kill his victims, not a chainsaw.
The producers of the movie however wanted to make the story line a little more thrilling, hence the addition of the chainsaw.