20 Shocking Real Stories That Became Horror Movies

Horror movies show us parts of human experience which are completely alien from our day to day lives. Honing in on some of the most frightening and disturbing people ever to have existed, they show a darker side of life, probing the people in the shadows. Lucky, then, that they’re based on fiction. Or so we believe.

There are many horror films out there which, believe it or not, take real tales as their inspiration. The words “it’s only a movie” mean nothing here; these horror films were all lifted from real life, taking inspiration from some of the darkest tales ever to have been told.

Hard Candy

The tale of a teenage girl who took on a sadistic cyber-groomer was met with shock and disgust when it was released in cinemas. Few people knew at the time, however, that the film was based on a news report seen by producer David W. Higgins, documenting Japanese girls who lured businessmen into deadly traps. A predator can come in any shape or form.


Charlize Theron’s phenomenal performance as murderer Aileen Wuornos in Monster went down in cinematic history. Playing a killer prostitute, Theron showed the real life events of Wuornos, as she attracted and murdered six men over the course of a few years.

Open Water

Thanks to Jaws, going into the water is not something that many of us relish. Since Open Water, things have only become worse. Playing out the events of when a couple were stranded in the shark infested seas of Australia, Open Water was terrifyingly based on a true story. Both in the film and in real life, the couple were never discovered again, a fact which made the film all the more chilling.

The Amityville Horror

We rarely take haunted house stories seriously but in the case of The Amityville Horror, we really should. Based on the paranormal experiences of the Lutz family when they lived in Amityville, the film played out some of the most terrifying and unnerving ghostly events ever to have been documented.

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