The Most Important Horror Classic Of The ’70s Gets Making Of Story From The Perfect Writer

By Sckylar Gibby-Brown | Published

When it comes to writing a book about The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, one of the most important horror movies ever to grace the genre, it seems only right to have a person who not only claims the classic is his favorite movie of all time, but who has also interviewed every single person on the cast and crew of the original film to be the one to write the book. That person is Joe Bob Briggs, the famed drive-in movie critic and movie host. Briggs is teaming up with Dark Horse to craft a book that will be essential for any horror movie fanatic’s collection.

Joe Bob Briggs Releasing Making Of Book About The Texas Chain Saw Massacre

While Dark Horse is known mostly for its comic books, the publishing company makes standard books, too. Joe Bob Briggs has a contract in place to make two books with the company. The first is called Joe Bob Goes to the Drive-In, a compilation book filled with the movie critic’s original film reviews, and the second is, according to Briggs, “the entire backstory of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.”

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre Turns 50

The “making of” book is meant to celebrate the 50th anniversary of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, which was released in 1974. After 50 years of influence, not only in the horror genre but in cinema and pop culture at large as well, it seems only right for a guy like Joe Bob Briggs to craft the telling of the back story. 

“I have been writing about The Texas Chain Saw Massacre for years,” Joe Bob Briggs stated, explaining why he’s the man for the job. “I’ve interviewed every single person who was in the cast or the crew, so this will just be the definitive ‘Making of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre‘ book.”

One Of The Most Recognized Horror Movies

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is an American independent horror film from 1974. As Joe Bob Briggs will undoubtedly explain in the book, the film was helmed by Tobe Hooper, who not only directed the movie but also produced and co-composed the film alongside Kim Henkel. Starring Marilyn Burns, Paul A. Partain, Edwin Neal, Jim Siedow, and Gunnar Hansen, the movie follows a group of friends who encounter a gruesome fate at the hands of a family of cannibals during a trip to an old homestead.

How Much Of The Story Is Based On Real Events?

Joe Bob Briggs will likely also cover how the savvy marketing team promoted the film as based on true events, thereby drawing a larger audience who was intrigued by the “realism” of the story. The true reality, however, is that while some elements of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre are based on true events, like the terrifying character Leatherface who is based on the real-life murderer Ed Gein, the majority of the film is fiction.


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The Texas Chain Saw Massacre was developed on a shoestring budget of under $140,000 (equivalent to $900,000 adjusted for inflation). but Hooper maximized resources by employing relatively unknown actors from central Texas, where the film was shot. The tight finances necessitated grueling schedules, with filming conducted seven days a week in the grueling hot summer heat to minimize equipment rental expenses. Still, despite the low budget and unknown actors, the film managed to transform the horror genre and became a cinematic favorite for guys like Joe Bob Briggs.

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre killed it at the box office, where it grossed over $30 million domestically and sold more than 16.5 million tickets in its first year, equivalent to over $150.8 million in today’s currency. Over time, the film has emerged as a seminal work in the horror genre, credited with pioneering various slasher conventions, including the use of power tools as weapons, the portrayal of the killer as a menacing, masked figure, and the depiction of visceral murders. Exactly how else this classic horror movie impacted filmmaking, we’re sure Joe Bob Briggs will uncover in his upcoming book.

Source: Mistress Harley Podcast