Why Rob Zombie’s House Of 1000 Corpses Took So Long To Be Released

Sid Haig

Rob Zombie has become something of a horror icon ever since he started directing movies back in the early 2000s. Of course, before turning to horror flicks, he was a prominent director of music videos helping to bring to life the visions of his own band White Zombie and that of Ozzy Osbourne. But it was House Of 1000 Corpses that really helped turn him into a horror mastermind.

The film became a cult hit, but what many people don’t realize is it was actually completed three years before being released.  According to a report from Screen Rant, Zombie shot House Of 1000 Corpses way back in 2000, but was met with resistance from Universal, who were concerned that the film would get an NC-17 rating and so, they never released it. This is all in spite of the fact that they knew exactly what type of movie they were going to be distributing. Studios, right?

Cut to a few months later and Zombie – having bought the rights to the film himself – managed to get an in with MGM who agreed to premiere it in October 2002 (most likely as a Halloween release). Sadly, however, that moment would also come and go as the director had a falling out with the distributor, who ultimately dropped the film.

At that point, it seemed as though House of 1000 Corpses was never going to see the light of day. Finally, though, before Zombie decided he was going to release it independently, Lionsgate took on the project and agreed to distribute it provided it could be edited down to a more suitable R rating. And it was.

Of course, one can’t help but wonder what House Of 1000 Corpses would have been like if it had been released as fully intended, but unfortunately, it doesn’t look like we’ll be getting a director’s cut of it any time soon. And that’s certainly a shame.

At least we got to see the movie though and because of it, we were treated to an entire bloody trilogy following the Firefly family, which recently culminated in 3 From Hell, which was released in September.