What would you do if you were haunted by a demon while filming a movie about one? What if you became cursed and your family was murdered just because you were involved in the movie? Well, that was actually the case in a handful of Horror films. From a wife murdered by the Manson Family to a puppet choking an actor -- here are 13 horror movies with paranormal activity reported on set.
1. Annabelle (2014)
Annabelle. The film was based on a real case that paranormal experts Ed and Lorraine Warren investigated. A couple buys a possessed vintage doll from a hobby store. Shortly after, their home is invaded by a satanic cult. The cultists conjured the entity that is Annabelle.
In an interview with SYFY Wire, stars of the set claimed that unexplainable things occurred while filming the movie. They stated that each time they ran past the doll used in the film it was in a different position -- on the rocking chair or in the bed. They claimed that there was not enough time for someone to run in and move her.
2. The Exorcist (1973)
The Exorcist. A teenage girl is possessed by an evil entity and her mother seeks assistance from two priests. The priests fear she may be taken by the devil himself. The church grants permission for an exorcism.
The movie was a money maker but the film was surely cursed. The first unexplained event was a fire that burned the entire set down. While not paranormal, it was a precursor to what was to come.
There were many real-life deaths surrounding the film. Jack MacGowran died a week after his character was killed by the demon in the movie, the assistant cameraman's wife had a baby that died, the set’s AC guy died, and the building’s janitor was shot.
3. The Omen (1976)
The Omen. American diplomat Robert Thorn changes out his murdered baby with another one whose mother died at birth who may have been the antichrist.
The Omen’s set was point-blank haunted. When you play with demons they play back -- only in an unexpected way. Gregory Peck, star of the film and David Seltzer, a screenwriter, were aboard a plane when they were struck by lightning. Sure, that could happen to anyone, but wait.
Producer Harvey Bernhard was almost struck by lightning when he was visiting Europe. On top of that, several people linked to the film were in a car crash. Every single incident was blamed on the filming of The Omen.
Lastly, and probably the most brutal incident, was when special effects director John Richardson and his assistant Liz Moore crashed their car. Sure, that’s cute but the incident occurred on Friday the 13th, and almost mirrored the movie's most intense scene. It resulted in Moore being decapitated just as the passenger was in the movie.
4. The Nun (2018)
The Nun. This film is more on the gothic side. That’s a good start. What makes this even better is that it is a spin-off of the 2016 Conjuring film. Can we just take a moment to appreciate the Warrens?
The Nun is about a priest with a dark past is sent by the Vatican to look into the death of a nun in Romania and to challenge a demonic force that took shape as a nun. Super exciting.
It seems that most of the movies that are part of The Conjuring Universe are filmed at haunted locations. I don’t know why people even still audition for roles anymore. Imagine being a cameraman walking into a room and finding out that the two men you saw and tried to speak to mysteriously disappeared through a stone wall -- that happened and the cameraman was never the same.
5. Rosemary's Baby (1968)
Rosemary’s Baby. A movie that needs no introduction. Rosemary and her better half move into an apartment in Manhattan. Soon after, strange things start to happen and Rosemary becomes mysteriously pregnant.
A lot of people faced the grim reaper by being involved with Rosemary’s Baby. First, the director’s wife was murdered by the Mason Family. Yeah, that’s not entirely over the top, however, it was actually one of the most gruesome murders in history.
Her pregnant body was found at his house tied to another victim -- both had been stabbed or shot. You think that is bad? It gets worse, my friend. The victim she was tied suffered an odd wound - her breast was sliced off.
Curses are unfortunately the gift that keeps on giving. The producer, William Castle, was put in the hospital for a near-fatal case of kidney stones. Sounds demonic to me.
6. The Exorcism of Emily Rose (2005)
The Exorcism of Emily Rose. Yet another classic exorcism movie, the Exorcism of Emily Rose is probably one of the top horror movies to watch right now. Reverend Moore is prosecuted for the death of a girl who was thought to be possessed -- his church-sanctioned exorcism killed her. Apparently, she should have been seen by a physician to treat her schizophrenia. We all know the truth.
This is another one of those filming sets with real ghosts. Unexplained events occurred such as TVs and radios turning on by themselves at the 3 AM witching hour (or devil’s hour).
Now, what you are about to read would probably be horrifying even if you were casually listening to the radio on the way to work. Actress Jennifer Carpenter who played Emily claimed that ‘Alive’ by Pearl Jam would play on her radio at 3 AM each night. Call me crazy but that is enough to make me pack up and go home.
7. Amityville Horror (1979 and 2005)
Amityville Horror. In a small New York town, a family purchases a house to start a new life. Little did they know, a mass murder occurred a year before. Odd things start to happen as the family is possessed by an evil presence.
The 1979 filming location was actually a real haunted house with tons of reported paranormal activity. You can visit the house if you are ever in New York. It is one of the most haunted places in America. Spooky things occurred during filming -- a pair of jeans fell off a hanger and a lamp was knocked over. Both events could not be explained.
8. Poltergeist (1982)
Poltergeist. A suburban family receives a visit from ghosts inside their home. While they appear friendly at first, they soon turn evil and start to torture the family up until they take the daughter captive. Seance and chill by watching this horror movie on Netflix -- it’s probably not the ending you expected.
If you have never heard of someone being choked out by an evil puppet then today is your lucky day. It was reported that actor Oliver Robbins kissed death when he was strangled by a puppet on set. Yeah, I had to read that twice. Steven Spielberg saved the day though, thank god. I guess he had a heart to heart with the puppet and it backed off.
Anyways, back to murder. Two actresses ended up dying shortly after the film was released. Heather O’Rourke, who played Carol, died a few years later and Dominique Dunne (Dana in the movie) was strangled by her ex-boyfriend. Those two incidents alone beg for a spin-off. Any takers?
9. The Innkeepers (2011)
The Innkeepers. Two curious hotel employees in New England investigate tales of paranormal activity. Their intentions are pure but they accidentally conjure up an unwanted presence.
Cast and crew members reported numerous accounts of paranormal activity at the hotel where the film was shot. Doors were seen closing on their own and lights would never work. Those who slept at the hotel complained of creepy, vivid dreams and stated something woke them up at the same time every night.
10. The Ring (2002)
The Ring. In this supernatural horror film, a young girl named Samara was tossed down a well. She comes back from the grave to execute the living after they watch a cursed videotape. Watchers of the video receive a telephone call after they have finished viewing. When they answer a message is spoken to them that states “seven days”. When seven days pass, they kick the bucket.
Subsequent to shooting for this horror movie, cast spotted an unexplained apparition toward the edge of the screen during playback. Some say it was the soul of Samara -- anxious to cause more casualties.
11. The Conjuring (2013)
The Conjuring. In this true story of a demonic presence, Roger and Carolyn Perron move into a neglected farmhouse in 1971 with their 5 little girls. After noticing some weird and violent activity, they decided it was time to bring in paranormal investigators - Ed and Lorraine Warren (RIP). They determined that an exorcism was needed after discovering the numerous murders and suicides that occurred in houses built on the property.
Things began to get odd after the real Perron family took a visit to the filming location. When they first arrived, a gust of wind swirled around them while trees in the distance were calm. Days later, the cast and crew of the film had to flee their hotel due to it bursting into flames.
Actress Vera Farmiga and Joey King seemed to have experienced most of the negative energy. King detailed unexplained bruising all over her body and Farmiga claimed that on the day she finished filming, she noticed three claw-like marks along her thigh.
12. The Ghost of Goodnight Lane (2014)
The Ghost of Goodnight Lane. Probably not the greatest movie on this list, it is still worth a mention due to the amount of real ghost activity and the fact is was based off Alin Bijan’s haunted production studio in Texas.
A total of five deaths occurred in the building and their spirits are said to still hang out from time to time. Employees and visitors often report seeing an unknown man on set and equipment moving on its own. The spirits here are pretty petty too -- they seem to slap people in the face when something upsets them. An ex girlfriend perhaps?
13. The Possession (2012)
The Possession. A young girl stops at a garage sale and purchases a vintage box that soon becomes her prized possession. After discovering how to unlock the box, she opens it and releases an evil spirit.
On set, cast members claimed to have experienced a large amount of activity. They stated that they would feel cool breezes when there were no doors, no fans, and no AC. Later during filming, they stored their props and the entire building burned down -- fire investigators could not find the root cause and it is still unknown to this day.
Have you ever experienced something unexplainable? If so, tell us in the comments below.
Aaron Hammond is the owner and founder of ScareTX - an online source for all things scary in Texas. Aaron and his team search throughout Texas to bring you the scariest content they can find. Subscribe to their YouTube Channel for monthly paranormal investigations and weekly top ten lists.