8 Creepy facts about one of the best horror films – The Blair Witch Project
The Blair Witch project is the mother of all found footage movies that are the rage now. Shot for a measly budget of around $25,000 by Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sanchez, the movie made a staggering $248 million and kick started the indie horror craze that gave us many brilliant movies. The movie was released in 1999 and 17 years later, we have some very creepy and awesome facts from the movie.
1 Actors were tricked during filming
Directors Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sanchez made up a myth about the Blair Witch and spread it amongst the town people so that the three actors could actually believe in the rumor and could give correct expressions. They believed that the myth was true and they were just filming for a story based on the myth, they didn’t knew that the directors had made up the whole story to get better reactions out of them.
2 Use of Walkie talkies
Since the actors were mostly alone in the jungle, the directors made sure that the actors Heather, Michael C. Williams and Joshua Leonard were kept on track using the walkie talkies. The actors had to be kept on a specific trail in the forest and apparently, they still managed to lose their way 3 times during the filming.
3 Real life tension
The directors actually wanted the actors to act how they would pursue a situation in real life and hence they were given preferential treatment and less food than one another so as to build the distrust amongst the 3 cast members. Keeping them hungry was the way to frustrate them and make sure they got the real tension between the three as they lose their mind slowly in the jungle.
4 Director takes actors to the extreme
There is a very unique and haunting scene in the movie in which the 3 actors who are sleeping in their tents in the night are attacked by an unseen entity and their tents are violently shaken and 3 of them run out of the tents scared and shocked. Well the shaking of the tents wasn’t in the script and in order to get genuine reactions from the actors, the directors themselves shook the tent and scared the bejesus of them.
5 Unrehearsed performances
The performances were not rehearsed by the actors and most of their work was impromptu. If they ever wanted to talk out of character and take a break from filming a scene, the actors and directors had a code word for doing so and the word was taco. Also they improvised a lot with equipment, for instance the camera used by one of the actors in the movie was brought at Circuit city and the makers of the filmed later refunded the camera for full amount, hiking their budget by even more money.
6 Movie website was an amateur job
Eduardo Sanchez built the website of the movie from scratch to give the whole movie a genuine look. He wrote elaborate back stories on myth of Blair witch which gave visitors information about the witch and whole story. Sanchez says that he was the only one with web building experiencing and was also single at the time and had lots of time on his hands.
7 The script was really unique
Directors Myrick and Sanchez wrote the outline of the movie way back in 1993, when both of them were students of film making in Orlando, Florida. They always had the idea of how the movie will be and had only wrote the script outlining the story as they always intended the dialogues to be improvised by the cast and their cast did their work brilliantly.
8 Audition process was tense and unique
The only brief given to actors about the movie was “An improvised feature film, shot in wooded location: it is going to be hell and most of you reading this probably shouldn’t come.” Myrick and Sanchez tested the improvisation skills of the actors by telling them what they would say to the parole board members to let them go after being in jail for 9 years. If the actor hesitated for even a second, the directors concluded the audition and called for the next candidate. The three chosen actors were paid $1000 per day and the movie was shot in 8 days.