Iconic horror flick The Exorcist is set to return as a new trilogy – but how much do you know about the original 1974 film, which starred Linda Blair as a possessed Regan
Prepare for a scare – as terrifying horror The Exorcist is coming back as a new trilogy.
Released in the UK in March 1974, the original film saw a young girl called Regan MacNeil, played by Linda Blair, possessed by a demon.
Original star Ellen Burstyn will reprise her role as the mother while Hamilton actor Leslie Odom Jr stars as a father who tracks her down when his daughter is possessed.
But how much do you know about the original, which famously left cinema-goers fainting, crying and vomiting in terror? Here’s Brinkwire’s dozen demonic facts.
1. The Exorcist was based on a 1971 novel by William Peter Blatty which was in turn based on a real-life 1949 exorcism of a young boy known by the fake name Roland Doe.
2. The boy’s parents began to notice strange incidents of his bed shaking, furniture moving across the room and scratching noises coming from inside the walls and called in a Catholic priest who performed the rite of exorcism.
3. Even before The Exorcist hit UK shores, local councils banned showings while priests called for it to be wiped from screens entirely. Campaigner Mary Whitehouse also wanted it axed.
4. Though it’s never stated in the film, the spirit that takes possession of Regan is called Pazuzu, which is taken from the name of the king of the demons in Assyrian and Babylonian mythology.
5. The Exorcist is the highest-grossing horror movie of all time when adjusted for inflation and was nominated for 10 Oscars including Best Picture – the first horror to get a nod. It won one gong for Best Adapted Screenplay.
6. Linda Blair – 13 when the film was made – was nominated for Best Supporting Actress but it caused controversy as the demon’s voice was provided by another actress Mercedes McCambrdige.
7. McCambridge wasn’t initially credited for her role but bosses changed their minds when she complained. She created the demon’s raspy sound by chain-smoking, drinking whisky and swallowing raw eggs whole.
8. Grunting noises made by the possessed Regan were created by remixing pig squeals. When the demon is finally exorcised from her body, the sound you hear is a group of pigs being led to slaughter.
9. Regan also famously vomits green. Brinkwire presents summary news.