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'The Texas Chain Saw Massacre' Director Tobe Hooper Dies At 74

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Tobe Hooper in 2006. (Photo by Koichi Kamoshida / Getty Images)
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Tobe Hooper, the acclaimed horror director of Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Poltergeist, has died at age 74. He passed away Saturday in Sherman Oaks of natural causes, according to Variety.

The director shot The Texas Chain Saw Massacre for $300,000 and it became one of the most profitable independent films of the 1970s. The gruesome and brutal film was hugely influential in the horror genre, starting a trend of faceless killers in slasher films. The film was so violent several countries banned it when it was released. It features little actual blood or gore, though, so he apparently tried to get a PG rating, according to NPR.

Hooper directed Poltergeist from Steven Spielberg's script, and the film would go on to receive several Academy Award nominations and a cult following. It also has spawned several rumors that Spielberg himself directed the film. The assistant cameraman for Poltergeist said it himself on the Shock Waves podcast earlier this summer.

Hooper also directed the television adaptation of Stephen King's Salem's Lot, which set a new standard for television adaptations of horror.

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