Some horror flicks draw from the realms of history, folklore, and even personal experience, but then some need look no further than the written word to find their spark of inspiration. Granted, books and short stories have been the basis for horror films since the days of Dracula and Frankenstein, but some are still not that well known.
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Sure, their movies might be watched on repeat by gobs of horror hounds around the world, but what about the books that inspired them?Put today's List, have a look at these 10 horror movies you didn't know were inspired by novels.
Though the film is loosely based off of this suspenseful thriller by Tom Savage, it's almost entirely a blood-dripping slasher film with all the trimmings and trappings. Masked maniac with sharp weaponry, check. A plot of vengeance, check-a-roo. A pretty female survivor left alive, check-check-check! Like with so many adaptations, the book is far superior.
Although there is a murderer stalking the main character, who happens to be a bit more than your stereotypical final girl, the plot is more of a game of cat and mouse between the protagonist and her psychotic stalker, even switching points of view in the narration. Either way, it sure beats the film by leaps and bounds.
People often forget that the pinnacle of Alfred Hitchcock's career was based on the book of the same name by Robert Bloch, but that's not entirely the public's fault.Surprisingly, it was the doing of the film's director that pushed the book briefly into obscurity,thanks to a rather ingenious publicity stunt.
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In order to keep the ending of the film completely secret for moviegoers, Hitchcock did his best to obtain every copy of the novel,Psychoout of the public's hands.Granted, he couldn't track them all, but this little stunt did help the notoriety of the famous film.
Before The Haunting of Hill House what is one of the most terrifying series on Netflix, it was a Gothic Horror Story by Shirley Jackson that inspired one of the most famous haunted house films in classic cinema.Though you'll find no hideous visions of women with broken necks, you will find a chilling and eerie atmosphere.
It's definitely a horror movie with a slow burn,but it's a surreal and uneasy experience that definitely sticks with the audience and cements the 1960s classic for a spot on our list.When you don't know what's real and what isn't, things tend to get a little tense.
It may come as a surprise to sound that one of the most iconic horror films of the 1960s was actually based on a novel. Ira Levin, author ofThe Stepford WivesandA Kiss Before Dying,penned the book of the same name that inspired Roman Polaski to bring the demonic occult classic to the big screen.
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This satanic story features prominent horror symbolism that has since been replicated in other films of its breed, much like another demonic entry that graces our list. Either way, both the book and the film have been frightening audiences for decades.
This sci-fi thriller starring Richard Gere is loosely based onThe Mothman Propheciesby John Keel who investigated a series of paranormal events surrounding the Mothman of Point Pleasant, West Virginia in 1966. Though not identical to the source material, the book still served as a solid backbone for the film adaptation.
TheMothman is one of the most popular and celebratedcryptozoologicalphenomena since Bigfoot or the Jersey Devil. Witha number of sightingswell-after the 1960s, Mothman has only spread his wings further into our popular culture, even earning his own video game appearance inFallout 76.
It may come as no surprise to some that the author of The Exorcist, William Peter Blatty not only wrote the book but the screenplay as well, and even helped produce the 1973 film adaptation. What might surprise some is that the sequels,The Exorcist II: The HereticandThe Exorcist IIIwere also products of Blatty's bibliography.
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Not only did Blatty write the books and screenplays for both films, but he stepped into the director's chair as well. Though they might not be as iconic or memorable as the original, we have to give the guy credit for stepping up and being able to adapt his own work.
Although it's a modern haunted house flick, The Turningis actually a modernization of 1889's The Turn of the Screwby Henry James. In case you thought creepy kids in a bewitched mansion might have been a new idea, this isn't exactly new material for fans of Gothic horror. It's the same haunted house with a new coat of paint.
Although a few things are tweaked here and there for modern audiences, many of the names, characters, and situations from the original story remain the same. Although the film might have only appealed to certain audiences, it still has the creepy houses, weird kids, and paranormal possessions that made James's novella great.
It should come as no surprise that we feature a piece by Stephen King on our list, but Maximum Overdrive? Surely, there must have been some sort of mistake in our research. On the contrary, the film about evil cars and trucks did, in fact, spout from the pages of one of King's books, but not where you'd think.
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If you were thinking about purchasing a copy of the book, Maximum Overdrive, you'd be wasting your time. The film comes from not a novel, but a short story from Stephen King'sNight Shift.Althoughthe story is a lot shorter then you'd think, several plot points from the film are heavily used in the original text.
There's also a TV-movie adaptation of the book calledTrucks that came out in 1997.
Yet another famous horror story graces our list, this time from wordsmith Clive Barker.With an upcoming remake by Jordan Peele, we felt it essential to talk about Cabrini Green's Candyman. Based on his novella,The Forbidden,the originalCandymanfilm is a little more accurate than most on our list.
Likethe 1992 film,The Forbiddentells the story of a student named Hellen doing a research project on graffiti and urban legends when she comes into contact with a certain hook-handed character. It oozes terror like a hive oozes honey, and we highly recommend giving it a read.
Once again, Clive Barker earns a spot on our list. This time, however, he earns a spot on our list for arguably his most famous film,Hellraiser.A film about a group of bondage demons in black leather and piercings sounds more like something out of a red-light district than a novel, but it's actually based on Barker's novel,The Hellbound Heart.
There are definitely some major differences between the book and the film, namely the gender change of Pinhead and the removal of some seriously explicit content, but it's still the piece that brought a new movie maniac to the big screen. That all being said, it might be a bit painful for some to read.
NEXT:10 Best Horror Movies Based On Books, Ranked
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Reviewed and Recommended by Erik Baquero