The book Hollywood Hex: An Illustrated History of Cursed Movies by Mikita Brottman talks about famous jinxed movies of Hollywood, right from deaths on the sets to other bizarre happenings, which impacted those who were involved in the so-called 'cursed' films.
What happens when a movie falls victim to a series of unfortunate events, mishaps, and strange happenings? It certainly evokes a feeling in our minds that the movie is under a curse that gives birth to such strange happenings. These movies stand apart as cult, not for success, rather for their spookiness off-screen.
Not only movies that have more of a scary background story, there are other movies that are not based on horror, yet, are surrounded by the superstition that the people involved during the production are victims of a curse. Whether it is mere coincidence or indeed a curse behind it, is up to your belief, but the incidents are indeed unfortunate.
Here are a few infamous movies that have some spine-chilling stories behind them, with mostly the horror movies topping the charts. Moreover, these incidents behind the screen are more scarier than the actual scenes in the movies.
Famous Cursed Movies of Hollywood
This was the spookiest movie of all time. Actors Jack MacGowran and Vasiliki Maliaros died in 1973. Ellen Burstyn suffered spinal injury during a stunt and actress Linda Blair even predicted death of a crew member. The entire aura of the film was spooky. Many bizarre things happened. It is said that actually a priest was called to pacify everyone on set.
The Superman curse is one of the most infamous one. It began when George Reeves was found dead with a gunshot wound to his head. Christopher Reeve, who gained fame from 'Superman', was left paralyzed in a horse-riding accident in 1995. 'Lee Quigley', actor who essayed Baby Superman when he was seven months old, died when 14, of solvent abuse.
The movie is jinxed due to tragic deaths surrounding it. Director Roman Polanski's pregnant wife Sharon Tate and her friends were found murdered by followers of Charles Manson. The producer of the film also suffered from kidney failure, and one of the composers died from a brain clot. Actress Mia Farrow was sent divorce papers by her husband Frank Sinatra.
Rebel Without a Cause
The lead protagonists of the movie: James Dean, Natalie Wood, and Sal Mineo, died under mysterious circumstances at a relatively young age. All three actors faced ill-luck. James Dean died in a car crash at a young age of 24. Natalie Wood died by drowning under controversial circumstances. Sal Mineo was stabbed and murdered in 1976 while on his way home.
Batman Series: 'The Dark Knight' & 'The Dark Knight Rises'
Like the Superman series, the Batman series is also said to be under some curse. Heath Ledger, after a wonderful performance as 'Joker', was found dead in his apartment in 2008. Morgan Freeman, who played the role of Lucius Fox, also suffered from serious injuries following a car accident in 2008.
Also, in 2012, a mass shooting happened at the opening night of 'The Dark Knight Rises' in Aurora, Colorado, at the hands of James Holmes, which killed 12 people.
This movie led to the unfortunate deaths of 46 people. Based on the life of the Mongal leader Genghis Khan, the film was shot near a nuclear test site in St. George, Utah. The location turned out to be harmful to the lives of the crew members. Many crew members contracted cancer, and even actors such as John Wayne perished due to the disease.
The child protagonist Heather O'Rourke died at the tender age of 12 due to complications arising from intestinal swelling, which further lead to cardiac arrest. Actress Dominique Dunne was strangled by her ex-boyfriend. Actor Will Sampson died during a surgery, and Julian Beck succumbed to cancer.
The Passion of the Christ
Apparently, actor Jim Caviezel was struck by lightning, and also suffered from skin ailments due to the makeup he applied. He also suffered from pain from accidental whiplashes, and dislocated his shoulder. However, it also jeopardized his career, and he has not bagged a good role since then.
This was never completed, and every actor who was signed died before completing the shoot. John Belushi, who was originally approached, died of drug overdose. Sam Kinison died in a car crash. Actor John Candy died of a heart attack, Chris Farley died of drug overdose. There has been speculation that the movie is cursed, and the script is untouched.
During the filming in 1993, actor Brandon Lee (son of Bruce Lee) died accidentally due to a gunshot wound resulting from a prop gun. Though the movie was completed, it serves as a haunting memory of his untimely death. In fact, the first day of shooting of the movie started with a mishap: one of the workers got severely burnt due to a power cable issue.
The background behind these movies are certainly nerve-wrecking, and enough to give anyone goose bumps, rather, even more than the movies itself. Whether the superstition holds true or these films were victims to amazing coincidences remains an unanswered question, and these mysteries will remain unsolved.