Some horror stories have real-life beginnings

Some horror stories have real-life beginnings

Sophie Dorrance-Minch, staff writer

Sometimes fiction can be nonfiction and authors like to gather ideas from real life events. These events can be inserted into stories, thus making their stories seem more realistic. Horror films and stories are definitely more terrifying whenever they feel more realistic. Here are some films and stories based off of real life: 

Horror Films:

The Exorcism of Emily Rose: Much like the film, doctors tried to apply scientific reasons for Annelise’s bizarre behavior – which included eating bugs, deforming her body, and chanting in foreign languages. The audio from the disturbing tapes near the end of the movie captured her actual exorcism and was used as evidence on behalf of the defense.

Psycho: Norman Bates is a character inspired by a real-life murderer named Ed Gein. Many other horror movie villains were also modeled by that serial killer.

The Zodiac Killer: The Zodiac Killer is an actual serial killer in Northern California who taunted the police with cryptic letters and never revealed their identity. While they were active, the project for this film was produced.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: Ed Gein inspired Leatherface.

Scream: The premise was inspired by news stories from the early 90s about the “Gainesville Ripper” in Florida.

The Silence of the Lambs: Ed Gein inspired Buffalo Bill.

Horror Stories: 

The Amityville Horror: This story mimes similar horror vein for previous decades and was claimed “A True Story” on the cover.

Communion: An abduction story that finds its way to the big questions of consciousness and offers possibilities that can’t be ignored, plus it has vast credibility to prove how realistic the story is.

The Bell Witch: A story about poltergeist activity in early 1800s Tennessee. 

The Terror: This story is based off of the Franklin Expedition and it adds a supernatural threat to a winter expedition of starvation, madness, cannibalism, and death. 

House of Darkness House of Light: This story inspired “The Conjuring.”

The Exorcist: A famous novel inspired by a 1949 incident of demonic visitation on a young Maryland boy who’s reported on the back pages of newspapers.

Dracula: Numerous poets and authors wrote about Dracula, aka Vlad The Impaler, who’s actually a real life being. Vlad The Impaler punished anyone who offends him by impaling them for the sake of revenge after his realm was destroyed. The reason why he’s called Dracula though was due to his father’s name “Vlad ll Dracul. Many writers have wrote misconceptions of him such as writing him drink blood and identifying him as a vampire.

Jaws: This story was inspired by the shark attacks that occurred on July 1, 6, and 12. The victims were Charles Vansant (25), Charles Bruder, Lester Stillwell (11), and Watson Fisher. When fishermen dissected the shark, they claimed to have found “15 pounds of human flesh of bone” in its stomach.

Frankenstein: Based strongly off of Johann Dippel, an 18th century alchemist who performed his experiments at castle Frankenstein and tried to resurrect bodies he stole from the graveyard with potions and concoctions. Other inspirations: Giovanni Aldini – tried to reanimate limbs of an executed criminal, Luigi Galvini – electrocuted deceased frogs and noticed their muscles twitch post-mortem, and Andrew Ure – tried to reanimate executed corpses by electrocuting them.

Audrey Rose: Recounts the tale of a man named Frank De Felitta who loses his daughter in a fiery car crash and believes she inhabits Ivy, a young girl.

The Shining: Stephen King and his wife visited a similar hotel in Colorado, where they’re the only guests as the hotel prepared to close for winter. On one night, he had a terrible nightmare of a fire hose chasing his three-year-old son. He immediately worked on The Shining after getting out of bed.