Star Wars: The Last Jedi hits theaters very soon, and rumors abound on the Internet about what will go down in this installment.
Keeping secrets about upcoming films maybe incredibly hard these days, but it was a lot easier pre-Internet. Let’s take a look at 10 wild rumors about movies that ran rampant over the past 40 years.
1. The Han/Vader fusion in The Empire Strikes Back
WAY before the Internet got involved, Star Wars fans speculated about rumors, theories, and what was coming next in the film franchise. Before The Empire Strikes Back was released in 1980, rumors swirled that Han Solo and Darth Vader would engage in an epic lightsaber battle and their “life forces” would be fused.
This would cause Luke Skywalker to have a major dilemma. If he killed Darth Vader, would he also kill his best buddy Han? This obviously never happened, but the rumor about Han dying persisted for many years, possibly because the plot point about him getting frozen in carbonite was leaked to the public and took on a life of its own.
2. The Shining was really an expose of a faked moon landing
Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 adaptation of the Stephen King novel polarizes audiences in a big way. There’s even a documentary out there called Room 237 all about just what the hell the movie really means. One very strange rumor about The Shining is that Kubrick intended for the film to be a secret apology for his role in producing fake footage of the 1969 moon landing. Danny wears an Apollo 11 sweater in the film, so there’s that…but it sounds pretty far fetched.
3. Cannibal Holocaust depicted real murders
Another film from 1980…weird. This Italian exploitation splatterfest was marketed as a found footage film about a film crew that ran into a tribe of cannibals in the Amazon. The director, Ruggero Deodato, was actually taken to court because some folks believed that he had people murdered on camera. Obviously, that did not happen, but some of the onscreen animal deaths in the film were real.
4. The curse of Poltergeist
Tobe Hooper’s 1982 creeper about a family dealing with a serious haunting has had rumors swirling around it for years. In short, people associated with the film became cursed. There is some truth to this story, as two actresses from the film died young: 22-year-old Dominique Dunne was murdered and 12-year-old Heather O’Rourke died of septic shock. The rumor associated with the film is that the skeletons used in the pool scene were not props, but the remains of dead people, and they exacted revenge. Don’t disturb the dead, people.
5. Howard Stern was going to play Scarecrow in Batman 5
This film was never made because 1997’s Batman and Robin was such a bomb, but there were some rumors about a possible entry into the series that was going to be called Batman Unchained. Director Joel Schumacher reportedly wanted Howard Stern to play Scarecrow and Courtney Love to play Harley Quinn. That would’ve been…interesting. In reality, Schumacher was never interested in the shock jock for the Scarecrow role.
6. Halloween vs. Hellraiser
I would’ve paid to see this one. At some point (ha!), Pinhead and Michael Myers from the Hellraiser and Halloween movie franchises were supposed to appear in a film together…and raise hell (ha ha!). But the Akkad brothers, who produce the Halloween series, ultimately didn’t want their villain mixing it up with any other creatures.
7. Jaws as a 3-D comedy?
Hmmmmm…sounds a little fishy to me (okay, that’s the last pun). Some films should just never be remade, and Jaws is one of those. But that didn’t stop the rumor mill from spinning in 2010, when word of a remake of the classic 1975 film surfaced. The shocking part? That Jaws would be remade as a 3-D movie and rely much more on humor to lure the young people in. Man, that really would’ve sucked…
8. The death of the Dark Knight
Director Christopher Nolan has always said he would only make three Batman films. But before The Dark Knight Rises was released, speculation was rampant that Christian Bale’s Batman would be killed off. The trailer for the film only added fuel to the fire, as Bane was throwing Batman’s broken mask on the ground. But Batman did not kick the bucket onscreen…yet.
9. Man of Steel 2?
This one is still a huge mystery, as the film has no script, no director, and no release date. But that rumor mill keeps on a spinnin’! The speculation regarding this project is all about who’s going to show up with Superman as friend or foe. Possible candidates have included Brainiac, Bizarro, and Kara Zor-El, also known as Supergirl. As this film sits in limbo, all we can do is guess.
10. The Force Awakens all kinds of rumors
Before Star Wars: The Force Awakens hit theaters in 2015, fans were in a frenzy about how the extremely secretive film would play out. Many fan theories hit the Internet, including: Kylo Ren was actually Luke Skywalker, Kylo was Luke’s son, Obi-Wan would be in the film, Finn was Lando Calrissian’s son, and that Rey was Luke’s daughter. Wow, wrap your head around those.
h/t: SyFy Wire
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