Movie Roles That Seriously Damaged Actors’ Minds

When it comes to horror movies, not every
shrill shriek from its stars is fake. More often than not, production on a thriller
pic is as smooth-sailing as any other genre film, but every so often the fright factor
bleeds over into real life. In the case of these scary movies, some of
their cast members were left shaken by what they experienced on set. A Clockwork Orange Stanley Kubrick’s highly controversial adaptation
of A Clockwork Orange is disturbing enough for the viewer, let alone for the actor who
starred in it. “I’ve taught you much, my little droogies.” For the famous brainwashing scene in the film,
lead actor Malcolm McDowell allowed his eyes to be pinned open for every take. Unfortunately, McDowell didn’t leave unscathed:
the physical torment caused him to suffer from temporary blindness and a scratched cornea,
and it took decades for him to be able to watch the film and actually enjoy Kubrick’s
work. “I would like to smash ’em.” The Birds While filming The Birds, Alfred Hitchcock
absolutely tormented his star actress, Tippi Hedren, both on- and off-set. Through manipulation, sexual slurs, and obsessive
behaviors, the notoriously tough director made Hedren live to regret her decision to
star in his film. The tipping point for Hedren, though, was
when Hitchcock lied about the use of real birds in a particular scene. Instead of the mechanical birds used in the
rest of the film, Hedren was duped into acting with live ones that were hurled at her over
a week of filming. She left the set bruised, bloodied, and emotionally
scarred. “They really didn’t need five days of that. I don’t know what it was, cruelty? It was mean.” Psycho Tippi Hedren wasn’t the only one to experience
a real-life fright on the set of a Hitchcock film. Janet Leigh was never quite the same after
starring as Marion Crane in Psycho either. She was so traumatized after watching herself
in the famous shower scene that she became too afraid to take showers and from that point
forward, and only took baths. “I don’t take showers unless there’s no other
way to bathe, and in that case the door is open, if they’re sliding doors, the curtain
is open. If it’s a curtain and the door to the bathroom
is open, so that I can see out.” Rosemary’s Baby Mia Farrow went through quite a few traumatizing
experiences while working on Roman Polanski’s American film debut, Rosemary’s Baby. A strict vegetarian, Farrow was asked by Polanski
if she wouldn’t mind eating raw chicken liver for a scene. Little did she know she would be forced to
consume it over and over again for different takes. That’s the kind of shooting experience that
definitely leaves a bad taste in an actress’ mouth. The Blair Witch Project While The Blair Witch Project is a movie that’s
probably laughed at more than it actually scares people nowadays, the disturbing ways
in which the directors haunted the cast are frightening enough on their own. Filmed over an eight-day camping trip, there
was little interaction between the cast and directors. Sure, they had daily meetings to provide the
actors with more supplies and instructions for where to go next, but the trio that starred
in the pic were mostly on their own. “You’ve got to be kidding me, this is a joke!” To authentically scare the cast, directors
also stalked the actors during the day, rattled their tents while they were sleeping at night,
and intentionally gave them less food as the days progressed so they became more and more
angry and exhausted. The Exorcism of Emily Rose Jennifer Carpenter might’ve been fine with
all the sinister surgical procedures going down on Dexter, but the actress got a case
of the spooks during the production of The Exorcism of Emily Rose. While she was filming the religious thriller,
some strange things started happening to her after hours. She told Dread Central, “Two or three times when I was going to sleep
my radio came on by itself. The only time it scared me was once because
it was really loud, and it was Pearl Jam’s ‘Alive.'” She wasn’t the only one to experience such
supernatural phenomena on the set, either; co-star Laura Linney’s television repeatedly
turned itself on at night during the shoot. Carpenter later chalked up these happenings
to some electrical issue with the hotel where they were staying … “My stereo would come on really loudly and
I wasn’t listening to it, I didn’t know if there was a short in the plug or what, but
it happened.” But she was also really glad the clock didn’t
read 3:00 AM when it happened, since that was such a horrifyingly significant time in
the movie. The Conjuring The real-life ghost-hunting history of Ed
and Lorraine Warren is freaky enough to put anyone on edge. But Vera Farmiga knew very little about her
real-life character counterpart before signing the dotted line on The Conjuring and receiving
her first paranormal encounter as a bonus. The actress revealed that during her first
round of research into Warren’s work she had a brush with the beyond after she hung up
the phone with director James Wan. As she told Cinema Blend, she opened her laptop
to find “three digital claw marks, from the upper right diagonal to the lower left.” Those marks would make a second unsettling
arrival in Farmiga’s Conjuring experience the day after she finished shooting the first
film and returned to her home in New York. She woke up to find a similar set of markings
on her thigh. She explained, “It was these three, very distinct, what looks
like claw marks, that long nails [or] thin fingertips could make.” She chose not to “give into the fear” of the
moment and signed on for the second film, which would give a different castmate a case
of the creeps. Patrick Wilson was no newbie to the scream
scene before he joined The Conjuring series, but the second installment of his ghost-hunting
endeavor did freak him out the most. According to him, there was a “pretty trippy”
moment during production involving a curtain haunting that led the crew to bring in a priest
to bless the set. He told Metro, “It was a huge curtain that went from the
floor to the ceiling, which was sort of waving violently and there was no door open or fan
on, no nothing.” “You didn’t even hear any air, but you watched
these curtains sort of violently going.” Wilson considers himself a skeptic, but all
of his supernatural screenplay may have gotten the better of him at this point, because he’s
admitted to believing his own house may be haunted now. He told The Independent, “I’ve heard people on two different occasions
say they’ve heard kids’ laughter in the middle of the night in my house.” Talk about taking work home with you. Thanks for watching! Click the Looper icon to subscribe to our
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