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Is The Texas Chain Saw Massacre based on a true story?

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is one of the most influential horror movies of all time, spawning sequels, prequels, remakes, and more. But is the tale of Leatherface and his twisted family based on a true story? Released in 1974, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre quickly became notorious due to the hardcore violence depicted throughout. But that controversy helped turn the film into a huge box office success, grossing more than $30 million at the US box office from a budget of just $140,000. It also spawned a franchise, and to date there have been nine Texas Chainsaw Massacre movies, with the most recent released earlier this year on Netflix. There have also been TCSM comics, while late last year, Gun Interactive announced a video game adaptation that will be an “asymmetrical multiplayer horror game.”

What is The Texas Chain Saw Massacre about?
The story of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre revolves around Sally, her brother, and her friends who are road tripping to an old homestead. Low on gas – and while looking for a watering hole – two of the group stumble upon a house, where they are killed by ‘Leatherface’, a maniacal killer who hides behind a mask made of skin, and who murders with a chainsaw.

Leatherface doesn’t act alone however, as his family help dispatch victims, then turning their bones into furniture. They kill the group, one-by-one, but Sally gets away, the final shot featuring an enraged Leatherface waving his chainsaw around while she escapes on the back of a truck.

Is the movie based on a true story?
The poster that proclaimed Texas Chain Saw Massacre to be true.
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre certainly positions itself as being true. The poster proclaimed: “America’s most bizarre and brutal crimes… what happened is true.” While the movie starts with these words flashing onscreen: “The film which you are about to see is an account of the tragedy which befell a group of five youths.” However, while the movie takes inspiration from real-life, the story of Sally and her friends was made up by writer-director Tobe Hooper, and co-writer Kim Henkel.

How Ed Gein inspired Leatherface
Ed Gein was a Wisconsin killer who became known as ‘The Butcher of Plainfield.’ As well as murdering locals, he exhumed corpses, and turned bits of their bodies into furniture and clothes.

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