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The Coolest Behind The Scenes Details From 'The Cabin in the Woods'

List RulesVote up the coolest 'The Cabin in the Woods' behind-the-scenes details.

There's so much happening on screen during The Cabin in the Woods - Easter eggs, monster cameos, inside jokes - that it can be easy to forget that it's just as chaotic behind the cameras. While fans are busy enjoying the story and theorizing about its meaning,  plenty of people had to work hard just to make sure audiences would be able to see it in the first place. 

From constant problems with releasing to the difficulties and details of the special effects work, there are plenty of fascinating behind-the-scenes facts and tidbits from The Cabin in the Woods that will make you appreciate even more the awesome final product the cast and crew created. So read on, and don't forget to vote up the bits you find most interesting!

  • 1
    69 VOTES

    Joss Whedon And Drew Goddard Were Wary Of Studio Meddling

    Photo: Lionsgate

    Whedon and Goddard wanted to make sure the finished film hewed as close as possible to their original vision, so they protected the script at all costs. Rather than constructing it within a studio writers' room under the eyes of producers and developers, they sketched up the whole script by themselves and built their own budget plan before shopping it around. In an interview for Indiewire, Goddard said, "We did everything ahead of time - we wrote it, we got our budgets, and put the package together. We just said, ‘This is what it is, this is what it’s going to cost - if you want it, great, if you don’t, no hard feelings’ and sent it to the studios." 

    Even after the script was in studio hands, they resisted drastic changes. When MGM wanted to make the movie 3D, they argued strongly against it. When there was talk of opening it up to sequels, Goddard simply said, "Every version of continuing the story undercuts the ending that we had in Cabin, and I just feel like that continues to be the perfect ending for that movie and I never want to undercut it.”

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  • 2
    143 VOTES

    The Director Knew Chris Hemsworth Would Be A Star

    Photo: Lionsgate

    Chris Hemsworth was nowhere near the A-lister he is today when he was cast as jock archetype Curt for this film. His most notable role was a minor appearance as Kirk's father in J.J. Abrams's Star Trek reboot. He auditioned for the role of Thor but felt as though he blew it and lost the opportunity.

    However, after landing his place in Cabin, Joss Whedon was impressed enough by his acting skill to push him to audition a second time, and vouch for him to Thor director Kenneth Branagh. This time, Hemsworth landed the role. Moreover, when MGM saw footage of Hemsworth acting as a leader (during the scene before the big motorcycle jump), they decided to cast him in Red Dawn.

    Essentially, The Cabin in the Woods was Hemsworth's gateway to fame. Ironically, however, because its release was so delayed in the face of MGM's financial troubles, Cabin didn't premiere until long after Hemsworth was making headlines as Thor, even though the horror film was completed much earlier.

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  • 3
    261 VOTES

    Bringing The Merman To Life Was Extremely Difficult

    Photo: Lionsgate

    One thing The Cabin in the Woods is pretty famous for is its inclusion of a laundry list of monsters referencing a wide range of other horror films. Many of them were also created with makeup and practical rather than digital effects, something that pleased the effects designer for the film, David LeRoy Anderson. In one interview with ScifiNow Magazine, he described the film's famous Easter egg-laden white board as "a shopping list of what we had to do... That’s pretty much the same board we had. Ours had a calendar next to it."

    Of all these monsters, apparently the merman, which fascinates and ultimately kills Bradley Whitford's character, was the most difficult to create. Anderson was quoted in EW saying, "The merman, for a number of reasons, was the most challenging. I think we did more renditions of that character than any other character. We kept missing our cut-off deadlines. We just kept struggling to get the final approval." The actor portraying the monster apparently had it pretty rough, too, as Anderson goes on to say, "For the performer on set, it was definitely the most painful makeup. He was completely immobile. He was basically a fish for 12 hours and had to be carried around on a stretcher. When he was laying on the floor, we’d give him a little pillow, and he’d kind of curl up in a fetal position and go to sleep. There’s a lot of really cute pictures of the merman napping. We’d go gently wake him up and say, 'It’s time to kill.'"

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  • 4
    121 VOTES

    The Script Was Written In Just Three Days

    Photo: Lionsgate

    The film was directed by Drew Goddard, and written by both him and Joss Whedon. Both men had also previously written for Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but this new experience working together would be totally different. Whedon proposed they lock themselves in a hotel room, and write the whole movie over one weekend. Goddard happily agreed, and the two produced a script in just three days.

    He later said of the process, "I think the most surprising thing was how much fun it was. It’s definitely scary to say we’re locking ourselves in our hotel and we’re not allowed to leave until we have a script. That’s a little terrifying, and yet in the case of Cabin, it was just fun." It seemed to work, though the finished product needed some trimming. Goddard continued, "I have to say, everything we wanted to make into the film at the end of the day made it into the film."

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