Horror flicks are always fun to watch. Even if you aren’t afraid of the bad guys, you can always laugh at your friends or fellow movie goers as they jump at every sight and sound. But sometimes, the stories about life on set are more terrifying than the move itself. While accidents can, and do, happen during the filming of a movie, sometimes the incidents that happen frequently, and repeatedly, and before you know it one word begins to run through everyone’s mind: curse.
A number of movies have been declared as cursed. Most of them have dark subject matter that would seemingly bring in the bad vibes, but other movies with much more innocent storylines still have accidents that cause the public to deem the set cursed. In this post, we’ll examine some of the most cursed movie sets of all time. It’s up to you to decide if it’s curse or coincidence.
If a movie makes the audience physically ill as it plays, you know there have to be some truly horrifying sequences in it. The Exorcist is considered the most cursed movie set of all time. Even subsequent installments of the film were plagued by freak accidents. A total of 9 people died during the making of the first installment. One of the actresses suffered a severe spinal injury after a stunt went wrong, and the cast and crew would complain of things going bump in the night in their own home. Perhaps the most terrifying story from the set involves the film’s premiere in Rome. The premiere was set up near two 16th century churches with very large crosses at the top. During a freak storm, bolts of lightning struck the crosses and sent them crumbling into the plaza below.
What could be so cursed about America’s superhero? While it seems Henry Cavill, the franchise’s latest Superman, has remained unscathed, the Superman franchise first got its “cursed” label after the death of the original Superman--George Reeves. Reeves, whose name was quite similar to America’s Superman Christopher Reeve, was found dead in his own apartment in 1959. While the press deemed it a suicide, no prints were found on the gun, not even Reeves’. Later on, Christopher Reeve was thrown from his horse and paralyzed from the neck down, a story which gained a lot of publicity that stayed with Reeve until his untimely passing. Other actors from the Superman movies also suffered misfortunes of their own. Margot Kidder and Marlon Brando were nearly crippled by psychiatric disorders, and comedian Richard Pryor (Superman III) developed MS three years later. Hardly any of the actors from the earlier franchises experienced successful careers after starring in the Superman films.
The Poltergeist Franchise
If the cast and crew don’t even like mentioning their days on set during Poltergeist; you know it was bad. Most people remember the little blonde girl that sat in front of the television and declared “They’re here”, but many don’t know she developed a severe flu and died from complications shortly before the release of the third film.The actress who played her older sister in the first movie was strangled to death by her boyfriend. The crew constantly had to fix props that would fall during filming. The props were also known to disappear and reappear in other locations, and the crew’s equipment was constantly malfunctioning. While the characters in the movie were cursed by moving into a house built over a burial ground, it is said “The Poltergeist Curse” was started by the crew’s decision to use real human remains in the film.
If your movie is about the son of Satan, chances are the production process won’t always be sunshine and rainbows, but the incidents that happened during filming were truly horrifying. The majority of the cast and crew were nearly killed by IRA bombings. Any airplane connected to the film did not fare well. David Seltzer (scriptwriter), Gregory Peck (actor), and executive producer Mace Neufelds’ airplanes were all struck by lightning. The special effects consultant crashed his car on Friday the 13th, and his assistant was cut in half by the car’s front tire. Remember what I mentioned about airplanes? Another plane meant for the film crashed and killed everyone on board. Everyone.
Keeping with the “Satan’s children” theme, we have Rosemary’s Baby. The fact that it is a Roman Polanski film should creep you out enough, but things didn’t really start to go south until after the film was complete. However, Mia Farrow came in with a stroke of bad luck of her own. She had just been served divorce papers by old blue eyes himself, Frank Sinatra. She also had to eat raw liver on set despite being a lifelong vegetarian--something Polanski forced her to do. Once the movie was completed, the bad luck transferred to Polanski and the crew. William Castle (producer) suffered from kidney failure, and was said to have screamed out lines from the movie while in the hospital. The film’s composer died of a brain clot (like a character in the film). A year and a half after the movie, Polanski made the terrible mistake of moving into a house previously owned by someone that ticked off Charles Manson.
Yes, that Charles Manson.
Polanski’s pregnant wife, Sharon Tate, was killed by Manson’s minions. Later in life, Polanski would be charged with molesting a minor. The same building where Rosemary’s Baby was filmed was the same building where John Lennon was assassinated--and it just so happens Charles Manson was obsessed with the Beatles, who wrote a famous little song called Dear Prudence. Dear Prudence was about Prudence Farrow...Mia Farrow’s little sister. Still think it’s all just coincidence?