Saturday, April 11, 2009

This is the House... Come On In...

On April 11, 2003, the debut horror film from musician Rob Zombie, House of 1,000 Corpses, finally hit screens in the United States - almost three years after filming had wrapped. The delay was initiated after the production studio, Universal Pictures, screened the film and had second thoughts about distributing it. Several months earlier, the studio was one of many Hollywood production firms involved in Senate hearings in Washington D.C. that explored the marketing of violent entertainment to children on the heels of the Columbine School Massacre. After stating that Zombie's House of 1,000 Corpses was "far more intense" than the studio anticipated, Universal Pictures Chairman Stacey Snider announced that they had released the film rights back to Zombie, so that he could find a new distributor. Three years later, the movie finally found a release at the hands of Lionsgate Entertainment who was interested in dipping their toes in the horror genre.

In honor of the film's release, we bring you the home that doubled as the infamous House of 1,000 Corpses and the home to the Firefly clan. It is officially known as "Building #14" on the Universal back lot, but is colloquially referred to as "The Chicken Ranch" in tribute of its original use in the 1982 film, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas. Unlike other buildings on the Universal back lot, like the infamous Psycho House (see Universal Hollywood: Psycho House and Bates Motel, which once stood at the same spot now occupied by the Chicken Ranch), the structure is a full-functioning set piece - meaning that both the interiors and exteriors can be utilized for productions. It is also one of many sights typically seen on the popular Studio Tour tram. The building's use in House of 1,000 Corpses is also not its only foray into the horror genre.

Find out more about the Chicken Ranch on the Universal back lot.

-Casey H.

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