Anyone who grew up in the '90s probably has some memory of The Craft. This witchy Fairuza Balk movie undoubtedly inspired countless rounds of "Light as a Feather" at sleepovers, as well as moved witchcraft from the Goth fringes of high school culture to the forefront of the American zeitgeist. The spooky film - which also features Robin Tunney, Neve Campbell, and Rachel True - follows four teenage witches who try to navigate the fine line between the good and evil of their supernatural powers.
While the movie has many eerie scenes, some are nowhere near as creepy as the behind-the-scenes stories of shooting The Craft. Not only did the production team hire a real witch to ensure authenticity, but the spells performed on camera led to uncanny occurrences on set. The experience was so profound that some of the actresses chose to continue their witchy practices even after the movie wrapped. Others involved with the film refrained from practicing magick, as the experiences from filming The Craft proved ample enough.
Here are some of the weirdest behind-the-scenes stories from The Craft.
Given the The Craft's dark subject matter, audiences expected the movie to be filled with haunting imagery and creepy happenings; however, the production team did experience real-life odd occurrences during filming. Director Andrew Fleming spoke in 2016 about several inexplicable phenomena that plagued both the cast and crew during production.
Fleming explained the incidents: "One time we started to film outside because the forecast was good, only to be caught in a massive deluge... [and] once a flock of crows just flew [onto the set] out of nowhere."
Back in 1995, Fairuza Balk decided to purchase Panpipes Magickal Marketplace in Hollywood. She explained, "[The owner] wanted to retire. She couldn't put the kind of money into it that it needed to keep it up, and so it was going to be turned into a Chinese restaurant. I thought, for the oldest occult shop in the country, that's a tragedy."
Her purchase not only helped the owner but also added fuel to the rumors of Balk being a practicing Wiccan. Though the shop remained open for years after the film's release, customers have reported through Facebook that the store shut down in late 2018. The shop's website is no longer available.
When The Craft was in production, gossip columnists weren't the only ones claiming actress Fairuza Balk - who played Nancy Downs - was a practicing Wiccan; the cast and crew also chimed in on this rumor. Director Andrew Fleming and actress Robin Tunney both attested to Balk's knowledge of witchcraft in interviews.
Years after the film's debut, however, Balk set the record straight, saying:
But people of course were like, "She bought an occult shop, and she's fully into this, and it's all real." That has taken on its entire own mythology that's essentially out of my hands. You can tell the truth and talk to people but they want to believe what they want to believe. What can you do?
Fans will recall the movie's unforgettable scene in which numerous shark carcasses line the beach. As powerful an image as that was, it wasn't The Craft's only creepy, creature-related occurrence. Adding to the list of the film's odd behind-the-scenes incidents, the cast claimed a white owl had begun to appear in several filming locations.
Actress Rachel True recalled, "Neve [Campbell] pointed out this white owl that was following us around from different sets. I was like, 'That's weird.' But I was new to California and I was like, 'Maybe it's just full of owls. I don't know.'"
Though the filmmakers were never positive it was the same bird, the owl's multiple appearances during production were difficult to ignore.