10. The dead couple in the bar near the start of the film are the parents of director John McNaughton’s best friend.
9. When Otis (Tom Towles) attempts to rape Becky (Tracy Arnold), he begins to choke her with an item of clothing. During the filming of this part of the scene, Arnold passed out for real.
8. Throughout the film, any sound of a neck breaking is really a Styrofoam cup being crushed near the microphone.
7. During the screening of the film at the 1989 Telluride Festival, nearly half the audience walked out during the family massacre scene. When the film finished, it was met with complete silence, as the audience were so stunned by what they had just seen and didn’t know how to react.
6. Bizarrely, the origins of this film are to be found in a never-made documentary about professional wrestling.
5. Actor Tom Towles initially auditioned for the role of Henry, before director John McNaughton asked him if he’d be interested in playing Otis.
4. The four murder scenes seen in the first few minutes of the film were all based on real life murders which Henry Lee Lucas claimed to have committed.
3. Actor Michael Rooker remained in character for the duration of the shoot, even off set. He didn’t associate or socialize with any of the cast or crew during the month long shoot
2. Composer Robert McNaughton couldn’t watch the film right the way through upon first seeing it, and actor Tom Towles (Otis) has only ever seen the film once, at the Splatterfest Film Festival in 1990.
1. Michael Rooker said he was working as a janitor when he auditioned for the part of Henry and went to the audition in his janitor uniform. He got the part, and continued to wear his uniform throughout the film shoot.