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Horror fans know they shouldn’t underestimate old-school horror films. The classics might seem simple to modern audiences, but they established the genre. Before Halloween and Friday the 13th, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre ravaged the big screen as Leatherface frightened moviegoers.

But do horror enthusiasts know every fact about the blood-chilling 1974 flick? The creators revealed the behind-the-scenes experience such as using real blood for one scene.

Leatherface running in Texas Chainsaw Massacre poster
‘The Texas Chainsaw Massacre’ poster | LMPC via Getty Images

‘The Texas Chainsaw Massacre’ was influenced by the media

Director Tobe Hooper developed the storyline while working at the University of Texas at Austin. Viewers recall the based-on-true-events warning of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. However, several horror films were also inspired by real-life killers.

But the director wanted to emphasize that the “true events” symbolized the media. Hooper believed that news media became intensely graphic. So he wanted Leatherface to embody its disturbing and graphic nature.

Hooper chose Leatherface’s weapon when he walked through a large store, thinking of a way to get through the crowds of people.

The director died in 2017.

When and how was real blood used in a Leatherface scene?

Audiences noted how much blood appears throughout the movie. There was such a hefty amount of stage blood that the lead actor Marilyn Burns’ costume hardened.

The actors faced dangerous moments on set. According to Screen Anarchy, Hooper admitted he placed his cast members in uncomfortable or risky positions.

“I would separate the actors and not let them socialize,” Hooper revealed. “Franklin, I would advise him, and he went with it…to not change his clothes and get as sweaty as possible, to never have lunch with anybody else. And then no one saw Leatherface until it was time for the first take.”

Hooper also explained that actor William Vail was injured. “The hammer that was used to actually hit Bill Vail was much safer, but it still gave him a black eye. It still knocked him down because, I mean, you know, Gunnar Hansen [Leatherface] had to really hit the guy.”

Marilyn Burns crawling on grass in Texas Chainsaw Massacre 1974
‘The Texas Chainsaw Massacre’ lobby card, Marilyn Burns | LMPC via Getty Images

However, Hooper didn’t use Vail for a bloody moment; he used Burns’ blood. In the Leatherface and “Grandpa” scene, the film crew couldn’t get the tube of stage blood to come out. As a result, they used Burns’ razor-sliced finger, as per Screen Rant.

Hooper talked about the actors’ reactions to the dangerous stunts. “Everyone hated me by the end of production,” he said. “It just took years for them to kind of cool off.”

There is another ‘Texas Chainsaw Massacre’ coming to Netflix

As a direct sequel to the 1974 flick, Netflix will release a new Texas Chainsaw Massacre in 2021. Horror enthusiasts noted the new slasher followed in Halloween‘s footsteps and wondered if there will be modern sequels to the new Texas Chainsaw. The 2018 Halloween was a sequel to its original.

When Leatherface premiered in 2017, Lionsgate planned several more movies for the franchise but lost the rights.


Why Leatherface Actor Disliked ‘The Texas Chain Saw Massacre’ Remake

Eager viewers learned that the plot focuses on Melody, who brings her teen sister to Texas on a business trip. An original 1974 character, Sally Hardesty, returns for the sequel as the only survivor.

Netflix has not determined a release date for the new Texas Chainsaw.