Is Texas Chainsaw Massacre Inspired By A True Story?

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is an American horror franchise that includes nine slasher movies, comic books, and a computer game version of the first movie. Leatherface and his clan are cannibalistic spree killers who frighten unwary travelers to their domains in the remote Texas countryside, generally murdering and then cooking them. The original film, directed by Tobe Hooper and scripted by Hooper and Kim Henkel, was produced in 1974. Three of the latter movies featured Hooper and Henkel.

The filmmakers held permission to make five additional Texas Chainsaw Massacre films after the success of Leatherface. Producer Christa Campbell remarked in April 2015 that the fates of the possible films would’ve been determined primarily by the commercial reception and anticipated crowd reaction to the 2017 prequel. In December 2017, Campbell explained that Lionsgate and Millennium Films had surrendered the franchise rights due to the length of time it took to release the movie.

Is Texas Chainsaw Massacre Inspired By A True Story?

Is Texas Chainsaw Massacre Inspired By A True Story?

The great news is that the narrative isn’t based on factual occurrences, so audiences won’t have to worry about running away from Leatherface anytime in the near future. Nevertheless, there are several real-life incidents that provided an influence for the original film and the development of Leatherface, the most famous of which is the incident of serial killer Ed Gein, who is suspected of murdering multiple people in Wisconsin in the mid-1950s.


Wonderful! If you haven’t seen the movie yet, you should if you enjoy getting psychologically scarred. It’s about a bunch of friends who are encroached on by a household of cannibals in the midst of nowheresville. Gein and Leatherface had a few characteristics, most noticeably how they both donned a human skin disguise and collected horrible keepsakes in their residences. Albeit Gein hasn’t used a chainsaw but instead shot his captives with a handgun. Gein is also said to have inspired two other classic movie villains, Norman Bates from Psycho and Buffalo Bill from The Silence of the Lambs, as well as allusions to him in American Psycho.

Kim Henkel, who co-wrote the original movie and is now a producer on the sequel, stated previously that while he “certainly researched Gein,” some other murderer, Elmer Wayne Henley, provided the motivation behind the existing character. 

Who Was The Killer Behind The Inspiration ?

The film became a mainstream sensation and is now considered a horror classic. It was advertised at the time as being inspired by genuine occurrences. While Leatherface and several story elements were prompted by the real culprit and tomb robber Ed Gein, the storyline was totally fictional, according to director Tobe Hooper.

In the 1950s, Gein, also dubbed as the Butcher of Plainfield and the Plainfield Ghoul, stunned the country with his murders. When Bernice Worden, the owner of the hardware store, vanished, officers discovered his Plainfield, Wisconsin residence. The shop’s cash register was open, and there were traces of blood on the ground, according to Worden’s son Frank, Plainfield’s deputy sheriff.

He informed police that Gein had been in the shop the night before and had promised to return for a liter of antifreeze the next day. Because the previous purchase at the hardware shop was for antifreeze, authorities went to Gein’s residence and uncovered a veritable house of horrors, with human skin and body fragments used in practically every aspect of everyday life.

Human skulls were used to make bowls, bones were used to make cutlery, and human skin was used to cover seats. Gein confesses to dredging up female bodies from the gravesite and dismembering them for use in his grisly trophies.

Is Texas Chainsaw Massacre Inspired By A True Story?

He sewed a suit out of the skins of numerous women, which he claimed he intended to climb into to “become” his deceased mother. In 1957, Gein was apprehended and later confessed to the killings of Worden and pub owner Mary Hogan, who had been missing for 3 years. The murderer was tried in 1968 and judged criminally insane after being originally ruled psychologically unable to face prosecution. He was committed to a guarded mental institution for the rest of his life, where he died in 1984. Leatherface, the hooded serial killer who brutally cuts his captives apart with a chainsaw and puts them on hangers, is reimagined in the 2022 Texas Chainsaw Massacre sequel.