Halloween is the perfect excuse to load on popcorn, sit on the couch, and start a horror telethon. But wouldn’t it be great to go a step further, and truly immerse yourself in the world of your favorite flick? It turns out you can — well, sort of. From Mike Myers first murder scene, to the hotel that turned an honest father just trying to care for his family into a murderous maniac, here are seven real life places that inspired or featured in classic horror movies.
Hollywood loves to give the Midwest a bad name. Though the movie claims the events in Halloween took place in Illinois, the truth is that Mike Myers started his killing spree in… California. The Myer’s house where young Michael butchered his sister is in Pasadena and yours to visit. You could also go hiking –if you dare- in the woods were Mike killed his schoolmate: Griffith Park in Los Angeles, a quaint recreational area.
2. Nightmare on Elm Street
Freddy Krueger turned a whole town’s life into a nightmare: literally! The high school where Wes Craven’s Freddy started slashing into the kids’ dreams is, in reality, is John Marshall High School in Los Angeles. The school seems to be popular with the movie industry, given that it featured in many other productions; from Buffy the Vampire Slayer to Amityville 4.
3. Rosemary’s baby
The Bramford — the building where Rosemary lived with her overambitious husband and their satanic neighbors — is actually New York City’s lavish Dakota Apartments. Not only did the Dakota serve as the setting for this amazing 1968 horror flick, it’s also where John Lennon was murdered in December 1980. That ghosts are as exclusive as the prestigious residents who now The Bramford their local haunt.
4. The Amityville Horror
This Jay Anson’s novel has seen many cinematographic adaptations, however, the 1979 classic was by far the best. The Lutz family home – you know, the house with the malevolent eyes – is supposed to be the house on 112, Ocean Avenue in Amityville. However, true movie buffs would visit the house that was appeared in the film as the Lutzs’ house, which is in Toms River, NY. These days, the horror movie location is haunted mostly by tourists and fans.
5. The Exorcist
This 1973 supernatural horror film is certainly one of the most disturbing you will ever see. See the famous steps where then-possessed Father Karras stumbled to his death on M Street in Georgetown, Washington DC. Movie buffs and people tired of the many other scenic places in DC — you know where to go.
6. The Blair Witch Project
Truly a masterpiece and a trailblazer in the genre, this indie movie was a huge blockbuster. The film shows the “recovered footage” of three students who disappeared while documenting the legend of the Blair Witch. The movie was mostly shot just miles away from Baltimore, in the small town of Burkittsville, Maryland — but the film was also heavily influenced by the Bell Witch Cave, which we cover here.
7. The Shining
Hard to believe that the ghost-ridden Overlook Hotel – the hotel that drove Jack Torrance insane to the point of attempting to murder his son and wife – was set in the Timberline Lodge in Mount Hood, Oregon. The only spirits haunting this places are those of the ski buffs coming to the resort. A great horror movie location to haunt yourself during the upcoming winter. However, if you’re looking for a truly haunted hotel that served as the inspiration for The Shining, you’ll need to check out The Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado.
If we haven’t inspired you to focus your next road trip around classic horror movie locations, we hope to at least have given you a great movie playlist for the weekend. What do you think of this list, what other movies or spooky places would you add to it? Tell us more in the comments.