5 scary movies you didn’t realize have been based on real activities

Reality is often more strange and eerie than fiction and some of the scariest and hair-raising films are inspired by awe-striking events. From infamous cold cases like the Black Dahlia and the Zodiac Killer to notorious serial killers and cold cases, these events have actually occurred! Compiled from oxygen.com here is a list of five movies ripped from real experiences of crimes and paranormal activities.

5 scary movies you didn’t realize have been based on real activities

1) The Black Dahlia

5 scary movies you didn't realize have been based on real activities

It was a classic Hollywood tale from the start. A beautiful young woman named Elizabeth Short moved to Los Angeles to pursue her dreams but the raven-haired beauty’s life ended tragically. In 1947, Short was brutally murdered in Los Angeles. Her severely-mutilated body was found bare and in two pieces on a vacant lot, face slashed into a Glasgow smile. Short was nicknamed the “Black Dahlia” and her gruesome murder fascinated the public imagination. This mystery case later became the inspiration for the 2006 film, The Black Dahlia, starring Josh Hartnett, Scarlett Johannson and Hilary Swank.

2) Zodiac Killer

5 scary movies you didn't realize have been based on real activities

A psychotic killer who taunted police for years with cryptic notes and symbols, the Zodiac Killer is believed to have murdered between 5 to 37 people in northern California in the late 1960s and early 70s. In 2004, the case was officially closed after authorities ran out of leads. Three years later, a film starring Mark Ruffalo, Jake Gyllenhaal and Robert Downey Jr was released about how the cold case tormented an amateur detective.

3) The Strangers

5 scary movies you didn't realize have been based on real activities

This 2008 film about a couple being terrorized at their isolated vacation home by three masked psychopaths was inspired by break-ins at the childhood neighborhood of director Bryan Bertino. The film-maker also seems to have taken inspiration from two other infamous cases: the Manson Family murders, in which Sharon Tate and four others were killed by Charles Manson’s cult members, as well as the Keddie cabin murders weaving the mysterious events into The Strangers narrative.

4) Monster

5 scary movies you didn't realize have been based on real activities

You don’t often hear about female serial killers. The story of Aileen Wuornos, a Daytona Beach prostitute who killed at least six men and was ultimately executed, was cemented with the 2003 film Monster. Charlize Theron, who essayed the role of Wuornos, bagged an Oscar and a Golden Globe for her gripping portrayal.

5) The Silence of the Lambs

5 scary movies you didn't realize have been based on real activities

The iconic 1991’s thriller tells the story of a relationship between a manipulative, incarcerated killer and a naive FBI agent. The plot revolves around finding a serial killer named Buffalo Bill, is inspired by real-life killer and grave robber Ed Gein who was convicted of killing two women in 1957. His heinous crimes included exhuming corpses from local graveyards and making trophies from their bones and skin.

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