The hauntings of Los Angeles are not only eerie but are based on true crime and believable schemes. It is probably the intrigue of glamour that brings so many characters to this mystical place, a place that is home to countless urban legends that may actually be true. We compiled a list of the most interesting, devastating and downright bone chilling urban legends that exist in Hollywood today. Some date back to the 1920s at the very start of the moving picture era and others date back only a couple of years. What rings true for all of these frightening tales is that they haven’t been solved and still live within a kernel of truth, keeping us all a little nervous that ghostly entities might be lurking in the shadows.
Paul McCartney Death Cover-Up
Paul McCartney has outlived 2 out of 4 original members of The Beatles but many claim that this imposter is not actually Paul McCartney. The legend has it that Paul McCartney died in a tragic car accident in November 1966. British MI5 worried about mass suicides of fans in the midst of “Beatlemania” and to avoid the danger altogether they replaced McCartney with a body double. The remaining Beatles weren’t thrilled with the ruse and left behind clues to the truth in their lyrics and album art.
The iconic imagery of Abbey Road is actually a veiled funeral procession for their fallen bandmate. McCartney is the only band member walking barefoot while Lennon wears all white depicting a clergyman, Ringo serves as the mourner and Harrison as the gravedigger. Could his need to reveal the secret be the reason Lennon was assassinated? Or is the man who was knighted by the Queen, has 4 children and has released plenty of new albums actually Paul McCartney? Some claim that they still aren’t sure which is the truth.
KISS Comic Book is Drawn in Blood
Gene Simmons was surely at the helm of turning KISS into a million dollar brand, donating their likenesses to over 3,000 products. Their first appearance in the comic book world was in the Howard the Duck story Mind-Mush!. Despite Simmons being the only member of the band that read comics, they ventured out to star in a couple of Marvel comics of their own – this is when it starts to get weird. The legend has it that the band members had this comic drawn in their own blood which is a super creepy but also very metal way to market a rock band’s Marvel story.
Turns out this Hollywood urban legend is 100% true and verified. Each band member had their blood drawn in a doctor’s office by a registered nurse. Just to keep everything kosher there was a notary present as the blood was poured directly into a vat of red paint that was then used by Marvel’s Borden ink plant. These original blood-stained comics are selling for almost $250 on various auction websites.
Orson Welles Still Haunts his Favorite Restaurant
This actor, producer, director and writer is still Hollywood royalty for his role in what was a brand new industry in his time. He is most well known for playing the lead role in film student must-see Citizen Kane. Orson Welles’ ghost is said to still frequent his favorite restaurant for a cigar and a bourbon. Many of the staff of Melrose Avenue restaurant Sweet Lady Jane’s have had encountered with Welles from beyond the grave.
In these accounts, Orson Welles is generally wearing a wide-brimmed black hat and a dark cape. It is also said that someone interacting with his spirit will pick up the aromas of his favorite bourbon and cigars. Although the dark spirit is somewhat ominous not one restaurant employee has reported a malicious presence along with these paranormal experiences. Sweet Lady Jane’s is still running and diners still have the chance to sit with their favorite Hollywood legend.
Tupac is Alive and Well in Cuba
Tupac Shakur attended the Mike Tyson fight in Las Vegas in 1996 without knowing that right after the event he would be brutally murdered in one of the most speculated events in history. In the almost 20 years since his murder, there have been strange happenings around the world that lead us all to speculate that Pac is still alive and well. The most recent findings have reported that Tupac is actually currently living in Cuba.
Reports of Tupac being alive usually come from photos that may or may not be photoshopped. The first of these images eerily shows Suge Knight driving Tupac in the same car that he was reportedly gunned down in with a date the day after his death. There are also multiple photos of blurry faced men that could possibly have the same face shape as Tupac that have gone viral as “Proof that Tupac is alive,” but can’t be completely proven. The most recent of viral photos proving conspiracy theorists right is one featuring a teenaged Rihanna with the gangster rapper but when he died she would have only been 8 years old. All we can do is look at the facts, and unfortunately we can’t because there aren’t any; this one is just going to have to remain an urban legend for now.
The Superman Curse
Landing a role in a Marvel movie can make a modern actor’s career but some say that there is a major curse associated with playing Superman. This is an urban legend that dates back to the 1951 movie with George Reeves. Reeves died of a gunshot wound when he was only 45, the death was first viewed as a suicide but this is now widely disputed. Reeves’ fingerprints were never found on the gun and all of Hollywood knew that he had been having an affair with the wife of powerful MGM executive Eddie Mannix. This controversy was the beginning of whispers about The Superman Curse. Christopher Reeve is the other most common reference when we talk about this well known Hollywood curse. After playing Superman, Reeve was viewed as strong and heroic but America was devastated when the movie star fell from a horse and was paralyzed from the neck down in 1995. Others involved in filming of Superman TV and movies have reported horrible tragedies that is always explained by the curse.
Woman on the Hollywood Sign
Peg Entwistle isn’t a household name but she is the star of another sad Hollywood story of a struggling actress who goes to the extreme in giving up her search for fame. The young starlet had found success as a Broadway actress in New York City which led her to seek out a role in moving pictures in Hollywood. When she arrived in Los Angeles her luck changed and the roles just never came. After telling her uncle that she was going to meet some friends Peg climbed to the iconic Hollywood sign, placed a workman’s ladder against the ‘H’ and climbed on up. She plunged to her death shortly after.
Unfortunately, her fame had come at last, the tabloids jumped on the story of the 24-year-old’s tragic end and she was dubbed The Hollywood Sign Girl. Many believe that if we visit the sign at the right time Peg is still seen in her 1930s garb wandering, continually lost in a modern world.
The Illuminati and Stanley Kubrick
In a much less dark urban legend than this one we found out that it’s possible Stanley Kubrick faked the moon landing and left clues about it in his famous movie The Shining. Occultists state that it was in this venture Kubrick became aware that the space race of the ‘70s was actually fueled by a sex cult that worshiped Saturn, the Saturn Death Cult or New World Order. Once he was hip to the jive of this powerful cult he dedicated his film anthology to revealing the sinister plots of what many refer to as the Illuminati.
Before editing, AI was not only about a young robot boy but about what type of human being would want to buy a 12-year-old robot slave. Lolita is a film that is desperately warning the world of a prominent child grooming network. The most obvious reference to an evil sex cult is Eyes Wide Shut, a film with its own urban legend. Kubrick’s last film was said to have been given a final edit just before his death, however, many believe that Warner Bro’s re-edited the movie to protect the powerful leaders of the New World Order. The production company still refuses to release the director’s cut and many believe they also orchestrated Kubrick’s actual death.
Suicide in the Background of Wizard of Oz
Probably the most famous urban legend in cinematic history, the story goes that some poor depressed munchkin decided that he’d had enough of the merry old Land of Oz. Presumably because he got kicked out of the Lollipop Guild, or his tiny wife dumped him or something. Anyway, he took a rope, tossed it over the branch of a tree on the set, and hung himself. It must not have been one of those mean talking trees, or it surely would have thrown the little guy like an apple.
Of course this is also a completely false urban legend. The true, less grim story explains what happens during the scene in which the Wicked Witch appears on a rooftop to confront Dorothy and her cronies. A large bird happened to stand up and wander through the background, giving the illusion that a person was hanging from a tree. Man, I tell you, if they aren’t cr?*?ing on your head from up in the trees, those pesky birds are wandering through movie sets pretending to be suicidal midgets, am I right?
Jack Nicholson’s Sister was Actually his Mother
One of the enduring rumors that have swirled around Hollywood for decades is that Jack Nicholson was living a real life version of Chinatown. That is to say, his sister was actually his mother. The story goes that after having Jack as a teenager, June Nicholson posed as his sister, while her own mother, Jack’s grandmother, raised him as her own son. So, Jack grew up believing that granny was his own mom.
And you know what? This one is actually true. Until he was 37 years old, Jack actually believed that his mom was his older sister. The irony of the situation is that Jack found out about this just as Chinatown was about to open, which probably made for an awkward trip to the theater for Nicholson. Sadly, his sister-mom died before he ever found out the truth.
Woman from Goldfinger died from Asphyxiation from the Gold Paint
Early in Goldfinger, James Bond has sex with a woman. We know, big shocker there, right? We hope we didn’t spoil anything for you if you haven’t seen it, but then again, shame on you for not having seen Goldfinger. Anyway, it turns out this woman is the personal secretary of the nefarious Goldfinger, whose finger is not actually gold. However, he makes up for that sad lack of gilded appendages by killing his secretary and covering her body in gold.
And somehow, this on screen evil somehow led to people believing the actress who portrayed Goldfinger’s secretary and James Bond’s conquest had actually died from asphyxiation. At the time, people actually believed that being covered in paint would in fact suffocate and kill you. Of course if that were true, wouldn’t it be a little foolish for the filmmakers to actually carry out this act on one of their cast members? I suppose it would add to the realism and all, but using real dinosaurs for Jurassic Park would have been more realistic, too. Curse you Spielberg and your lack of real dinosaurs!
“The Little Rascals” Curse
Also known as ‘Our Gang’, The Little Rascals were a group of… well, little rascals that made a name for themselves churning out short movies in the ’20s and ’30s. Featuring dozens of child actors, the movies were a big hit. They were also apparently cursed. In the early 2000s, an urban legend arose that a large number of the gang had died prematurely in nasty ways.
The list makes chilling reading. The guy who played Alfalfa was shot to death in his early 30s. The guy who played Brisbane committed suicide. Scotty Beckett was beaten to death, the dog that played Pete the Pup was poisoned, and Wheezer died in an airplane crash. Others were killed by hepatitis, being stabbed, liver disease, and car accidents. Was there a curse hanging over The Little Rascals?
In this case, the answer is probably no. Snopes has pointed out that the cast of Our Gang was so stupendously large (29 actors appeared in 15 or more installments, many dozens appeared in one or two) that you’d probably expect to find a decent number of premature and nasty deaths. Still, the story makes a chilling counterpoint to the gang’s carefree adventures onscreen.
The Atuk Curse
In 1963, Canadian author Mordecai Richler released his novel The Incomparable Atuk. A social satire about an Inuit hunter who moves to the big city, it was potential Hollywood gold. Hollywood seemed to agree. In 1970, a script was approved for immediate production. At which point the so-called Atuk curse struck.
The curse is the reason you’ve never heard of Atuk. Unlike The Omen or The Little Rascals, Atuk’s curse has stopped the movie from ever being finished. It did so – urban legend has it – by killing all of its stars.
Over the years, John Belushi, Sam Kinison, John Candy, and Chris Farley were all attached to play Atuk. One by one, they all died untimely deaths. Part of this may have been lifestyle related. Nonetheless, some consider it creepy how swiftly the baton passed from actor to actor, only for them to die in turn, fueling the urban legend of Atuk’s curse. Since Farley’s death in 1997, the project has languished in development hell.