On this day back in 1976 the horror classic The Omen was released. The film tells the chilling tale of the wealthy Thorn family who discover their adopted son Damien, is actually the Antichrist. I hate when that happens.
The entire production of the film was riddled with much tragedy earning it a reputation as being cursed. Even after The Omen’s release, unfortunate events continued to plague people involved in the project. Some of the tragic events that befell the cast and crew:
Lead actor Gregory Peck’s son committed suicide just weeks before filming began.
Both Peck and a film executive named Marc Neufeld were in airplanes struck by lightning while travelling to the film location. They were on separate flights.
An animal trainer that worked during the filming of the baboon scene was killed just one day after he left The Omen set. He was attacked by a tiger while working on a different project.
Another plane incident, this time deadly, occured when an aircraft that was rented for an aerial shot crashed on takeoff. No one survived.
During filming the London Hilton – where actors and film execs were staying – was bombed by the Irish Republican Army.
John Richardson who was responsible for the special effects for the film, including the masterful decapitation scene, was involved in a horrible car accident. He survived but his passenger, assistant Liz Moore, wasn’t as lucky. She was decapitated.
If you’ve not seen The Omen it’s a classic that is certainly worth your time. I saw it back in the 70’s as a kid and I still throw out a line from the movie every now and then. Not to mention periodically getting the film’s theme song Ave Satani stuck in my head. It is one of those movies that certainly leaves a mark. Pun intended.
Conradt, Stacy. 13 Foreboding Facts About The Omen. Mental Floss. 2016
Roschke, Ryan. The True Story Behind The Omen, One of the Most Haunted Film Productions in History. PopSugar. 2019
Wolfe, Bethany. Was ‘The Omen’ the most haunted movie set of all time?