"Inspired by true events..."
How many times have we seen this line as we sit down to enjoy a scary movie? It is undeniable that upon reading them we do get the tiniest twinge of discomfort. Be it "inspired by true events" or "based on a true story," the phrase promises the same thing - that the narrative of the film you are about to watch REALLY happened.
Without a doubt, this all adds an extra layer of unease to a viewing experience; the very idea that something in a horror film could have possibly happened in the real world has caused countless sleepless nights the world over.
But just how true are the events touted to be based in reality? How much creative license does Hollywood take, and just how freely do they throw around the "true story" aspect? Are all films that carry this moniker a faithful retelling of their source material, or is it a complete lie that's designed to sell more tickets and make a movie stand out amongst the crowd?
Let's find out as we count down eight horror movies supposedly inspired by "true" events
8. The Haunting In Connecticut (2009)
The Haunting in Connecticut was a movie seven years in the making. A family battling cancer take residence in a former funeral home, and there they fall victim to sinister spirits. The very real plight of this family was then showcased in a 2002 Discovery Channel documentary. The programme featured interviews with all involved and was the springboard for the documentary series A Haunting.
When the feature finally hit the big screen Lionsgate's marketing machine went into overdrive. They wanted people to remember this film had indeed happened! A new documentary was commissioned and the individuals involved were sent on a promotional tour. It paid off with the film earning a $60 million profit, even if reviews were tepid. But just how much truth is behind it all?
Looking into the "haunting" experienced by the Snedeker family reveals some serious red flags. Foremost the involvement of Ed & Lorraine Warren who hired fiction writer Ray Garton to condense the tale for publication. Garton claims he had trouble getting consistent stories and uncovered allegations of drug use, financial problems and, even sexual molestation. Approaching Ed Warren for help, Garton claims he was told the family was "crazy" and to "write a good scary story." Whilst promoting the eventual book in 1992, the story was further questioned. Neighbours appearing on the Sally Jessy Raphael Show were adamant the Snedekers made their story up. The haunting merely masking their darker issues and that no "paranormal" trouble had happened since.