Sunday, June 26, 2016

Texas Filming Locations: Hunting Down the Chainsaw House

Any self respecting Horror nerd visiting Texas would have one goal in mind, and that goal would be to visit Leatherface's stomping grounds. That's just what Lord Battle and I were dedicated to. Even though we were there on business we still found time to play! Our first stop was Ft.Worth Texas "Tattoo Ranch" which is not only home to talented artists and awesome taxidermy but also one of the most noteworthy members of the Sawyer family, "The Saw"! 

 Yes the very same chain saw wielded by the late great Gunnar Hansen (Leatherface) in the original 1974 classic. The cool kids at the Tattoo Ranch are cool enough to let anyone in free of charge to see the saw in person.

 Next stop on the Texas Chainsaw trail was the Sawer house in all it's glory. The house was moved to Kingsland Texas in 1998 and is now a restaurant, which is awesome because the house is well kept for generations to enjoy and it is even painted in the exact same way (we nerds appreciate the little things). 

Make sure to reserve a table in the "kingsville room" as that is the location of the famous dining room scene. 

It was incredible to look down the hall way, walk down the porch and sit on the steps like some lost roadtrippers looking to use a phone. We also stumbled upon a few bonus locations in Austin like the football field and school used in Robert Rodriguez's under-appreciated "invasion" movie The Faculty

This is actually Lockhart and Texas school for the deaf and can be found easily but be careful as it is an operational school and jumping fences to line up screen shots is not appreciated. 

Back in Dallas (which was the primary location of our work trip) we were excited to find out that not one but two awesome cult classics were filmed around the corner from our hotel. First stop was the Majestic Theatre, home to Brian De Palma's 1974 Rock classic Phantom of the Paradise! This location is beautiful and still functioning as a venue for all kinds of entertainment. And if the film is true you can also sell your soul there. 

I was lucky enough to have my wife and daughter with me and also lucky that they are nerds as well because as soon as we found out that 1987's ROBO COP was filmed in Dallas we knew it was time for a location hunt. These locations were easy to get to and still look exactly as they did when the film was shot. First was futuristic Detroit City Hall which is actually the Dallas municipal building parking was easy and lining up screen shots could't be more fun. Unfortunately the "Detroit police station" was torn down which is why you should never take for granted that these location will always be around :(. 

But the evil OCP headquarters is alive and well; it's actually the Dallas City Hall. It's easy to see why a location scout would see a 1980's Dallas and feel like it would be the perfect back drop to futuristic Detroit. All in all the trip was extremely successful. The next time you are visiting family or out on work do yourself a favor and investigate the sights and sounds of the area, because these fun sights are free to visit but are being remodeled or torn down every year. Get out to Texas have some BBQ and tell the Sawyers Lord Battle and Killdozer sent you!


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