Many movies that we enjoy and consider to be timeless classics were filmed on movie sets that contained disastrous events - and not just an isolated incident but a string of them. Almost as if the set was cursed. Some of these movies did deal with especially dark topics involving evil and scary concepts, so it does make you wonder if something unexplainable was happening. Deadly curse or just bad luck? Have a read and make up your own mind...
The Poltergeist Trilogy (1982-1988)
The Poltergeist Trilogy of movies is considered a classic franchise in the horror genre. The movies consist of three titles: "Poltergeist", "Poltergeist II", and "Poltergeist III". While all three of them are considered great, they are also notorious for their curse.
Several cast members died on set, but the franchise as a whole had more than its share of hard luck. Carol Anne, the youngest daughter in the series, is an infamous case. Her character was played by several actresses throughout the trilogy's lifetime: Heather O'Rourke (1982-1988), Dominique Dunne (1982), and Oliver Robins (II and III).
Carol Anne's death was just one of many for the franchise, but it certainly stands out. She fell ill after coming into contact with contaminated water while filming in North Carolina. Despite efforts to save her life, she died before reaching an Atlanta hospital.
The "Poltergeist" curse continued after Carol Anne's death. Dominique Dun ne, who played the oldest daughter in the first film, was murdered by her boyfriend after he became agonized with jealousy.
Heather O'Rourke's character's sister was played by actress Jessica Harp from 2008 to 2011.
Jessica died of a suspected heart attack at just 23 years old, having only come into contact with Poltergeist in the third movie.
The Omen (1976)
A superstitious tale about a child who begins to suspect that his birth was an attempt at human sacrifice by evil forces is rife with danger and misfortune, but nothing like what happened on set. It's no wonder that this film has been deemed cursed more than once.
Filming for "The Omen" was plagued by several accidents that maimed or killed cast members. A special effects technician caught on fire while setting up a scene involving the explosion of a door, an animal handler severed the head of his own beloved chimp with a cleaver, and star Gregory Peck almost drowned when he fell into the sea during a scuba diving scene.
The most memorable of the accidents occurred when the set was attacked by an actual murder of crows that seemed to be an omen themselves. The birds pecked at several cast members and crew, drawing blood in some cases before they were chased away by crew members with brooms.
Of all these deaths and accidents, no one actually died on set. However, star Gregory Peck's son Jonathan was killed by a single punch from a drunk man as he walked home.
The Crow (1994)
Horror films often include darkness and evil forces that punish those who dare to tamper with their domain. Such is the case in "The Crow", a gothic tale of loss and vengeance. The film is well-known for its dark tone and graphic violence, but nothing about the movie has gained as much notoriety as the curse that plagued its filming in 1993.
The set was filled with alarming occurrences from the start. On the first day of shooting, a crew member accidentally ran over a housemate's dog. A few days later, another crew member was injured when he fell through the roof of a building that collapsed beneath him.
The cast and crew were not immune to these disasters either. Actress Brittany Murphy, who played lead singer Irena, had just finished shooting her first scene when she learned that her mother had died. The next day, the film's star Brandon Lee was seriously injured when shrapnel from an effect hit him in his abdomen.
He died before surgery could begin to save his life. His death was later ruled accidental. Brittany Murphy died of pneumonia at age 32 six years later in 2009.
Born on the 4th of July (1989)
A movie about an injured Vietnam War veteran struggling to cope with life after the war should come with a warning for those who suffer from PTSD. The drama is based on real-life events and real-life people, including Ron Kovic (played by Tom Cruise).
Cruise actually broke his ankle during filming and had to continue shooting while recovering from surgery. He spent months after physical therapy to battle the pain and regain his mobility, while director Oliver Stone often had to shoot hours of footage for just a few minutes of the film.
Kirk Douglas, who plays Ron's father in the movie, also suffered an injury when he fell through some steps on set and broke his leg. While this seems like a minimal accident, it was actually the beginning of a string of accidents and deaths that plagued this production.
A propane tank exploded and destroyed much of the set, killing three crew members in addition to injuring other cast and crew. Kirk Douglas' son Michael was among those injured during the explosion, though he recovered enough to continue filming.
The Twilight Zone (1959-64)
While there is no actual evidence that this classic series was cursed during production, it certainly has an eerie history after its cancellation. The show's creator and host Rod Sterling passed away at age 58 due to heart failure caused by blood poisoning, and his death has later ruled a suicide.
The sister of actress Anne Francis committed suicide by shooting herself in the head at age 45. Actor Vic Morrow died during an illegal helicopter stunt that went wrong when he was crushed to death by a falling piece of equipment from the set. His children were also killed in this accident.
Deadly Curse or Just Bad Luck?
While there is no way to prove that these accidents and deaths were caused by some sort of curse, it seems strange that so many people would die around one production. Is "The Crow" cursed because of the tragic death of its star, or was the original script accident-proof until a bunch of inexperienced people took over?
What about "The Twilight Zone", which was filming for years without any major accidents before the tragedy on set ended its run? Though some might say these incidents are just a coincidence, there is no denying that they have earned their places in Hollywood history.
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