If you haven't seen The Blair Witch Project yet, you really should. It wasn't so much a horror movie as a movie which redefined how horror could work on the big screen.
It also proved that you don't need $100 million to make a movie that will live on in the minds of viewers for a very long time indeed.
The movie's amateur appeal was what set it apart from the rest, and we're sure that these creepy behind the scenes facts will add a little extra terror to your memories of The Blair Witch Project.
1. Heather Donahue's Real Life Mom Got A Nasty Surprise
Many people who watched the movie thought it was an actual documentary, which led to hundreds of people sending Heather Donahue's mom sympathy cards because they thought she really had disappeared.
2. The Lead Actors Thought It Was A True Story
The three lead actors in the production of the movie were told that while their experiences were fake, the movie was based on real events. It wasn't, but they weren't told that until after filming finished.
3. They Got Lost In The Woods For Real
To try and keep the stars from wandering off during scenes in the woods, they were issued with walkie-talkies. It didn't always work—they got lost three times!
4. The Budget Was Really Tight
The Blair Witch Project's unique style came from real cash constraints. The producers got a refund on one of the cameras they used in shooting from Circuit City when they were done.
5. The On Set Tension Was Real
To create real tension on the set, the stars were forced to go hungry during shooting. This was a ploy which really paid off in the scenes that followed.
6. The Return Reactions Were Real
There's a moment when Mike, Josh, and Heather realize they have walked all day only to arrive back in the same spot. Their reactions are real—it's exactly what the producers had made the actors do that day, too.
7. Getting Out Of Character Required A Code Word
When the actors needed to take a break from being a character in a movie, they had to use a code word to let the others know. The code word? Taco.
8. The Actors Were Really Scared When The Tent Shakes
Nobody scripted the moment when they're all asleep in the tent and the tent starts shaking. The terror on the actors' faces is 100% real terror.
9. They Thought The Townspeople Were Real
The actors weren't told that the townspeople they would interview were actors. They thought that they were real and it made their interactions seem more genuine.
10. Heather Hated The Final Scene
Heather said that the movie's final scene stayed with her long after filming. She continued to cry and hyperventilate for a time after the cameras stopped rolling.
11. The Teeth Heather Found Were Josh's Real Teeth!
The director went to Josh's dentist in real life and paid to get his old teeth. The hair in that scene is really Josh's, too.
12. All The Actors Pretended To Be Dead
To help give the film's publicity a boost, the actors all agreed to be listed as "missing, presumed dead" on the movie listing site, IMDb.
13. It Was Quick To Shoot
The movie was made in just 8 days and while they shot over 19 hours of footage, the end product was just 90 minutes long.
14. The Actors Weren't Getting Rich
The day rate for Josh, Heather and Michael was $1,000 each and took most of the film's budget. However, Michael says that their share of the profits is over $300,000 to date - each.
15. The Night Sounds Were Real
The children playing sound that can be heard during the night is of real children. It was recorded outside the director's mom's house.
16. People Thought Blair Witch Was Real
A lot of fans who saw the movie were 100% convinced that the movie was real. They traveled to Maryland to try and prove it.
17. The Actors Found Their Lines With GPS Trackers
The actors got their instructions and their lines on milk crates which were dumped in the woods for them to find using GPS tracking devices.
18. They Couldn't Afford The Music They Wanted
In the first scene in the car, they wanted to have "We've gotta get out of this place," by The Animals on the stereo but they couldn't afford to pay for the usage rights.
19. Filming Ended On Halloween
3 Brothers Film
The actors say that it was utterly bizarre to emerge from the woods to find the world waiting for them in costume. It was also the first time they ate well in a week.
20. The Co-Director Built The Website
Straight From A Movie
They had no budget for marketing, so Eduardo Sanchez the co-director built it himself. He says the fact that he was single back then helped make time for it.
The Blair Witch Project is one of the scariest movies of all time and these facts just add to its nasty reputation.
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