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The Real Life Inspiration For ‘Hostel’ Is About As Scary As The Film

Stewart Perrie

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The Real Life Inspiration For ‘Hostel’ Is About As Scary As The Film

If you've seen Hostel then, in much the same way Jaws scared people from the water, you'll understand why viewers got a bit twitchy about staying in budget accommodation.


The film follows college students Paxton and Josh as they backpacked their way across the continent. A bloke in Amsterdam tells them that there's a hostel in Slovakia that has incredibly attractive women, so naturally, they head straight there.

Sadly though, they find out that the establishment is a front for a twisted torture enterprise that allows wealthy sickos the chance to murder guests in whichever way they like.

It was a pretty fucked up movie to say the least, and the sequel and third instalments were even grislier than the original. Thankfully, it was all the work of fiction... or was it?

Credit: Lionsgate/Screen Gems
Credit: Lionsgate/Screen Gems

Film writer, producer and director Eli Roth says the idea for the film came from a very creepy encounter with a certain website.

Speaking to Dread Central, the moviemaker said: "It started with a conversation with Ain't It Cool News' Harry Knowles. Harry and I were talking about sick stuff we'd seen on the Internet, like that the guy in Texas who set it up so you could control a gun and hunt lions and wild game online.

"The FBI had shut this guy down. I think his legal defence was that he was making it so handicapped people could hunt, too. It was so fucked up.

"I thought, 'Jesus. Why wouldn't they just put a human being in a room?' and Harry said, 'Well, actually I found something like that' and he sent me a link to a site where you could go to Thailand and for $10,000, walk into a room and shoot somebody in the head.

"The site claimed that the person you were killing had signed up for it and that part of the money would go to their family because they were so broke and were going to die anyways.

"It was to give you the thrill of taking another human life."

He added that whether the site was real or not didn't matter, it was that someone was twisted enough to come up with a cash-for-life business.

Roth said that he knew people who couldn't get high off drugs or couldn't orgasm with hookers because of overuse, and they were subsequently searching for another thrill - so why couldn't it be killing someone?


When asked again about that chilling website, he said: "The site itself was real, but you had to give credit card information, and I was at the point where I wanted to do a documentary about it, and it's like, to get any further I would have had to give personal information and I figure these people kill people for a living, I'm not gonna find out."

That was probably a smart move, Eli.

Featured Image Credit: Lionsgate/Screen Gems

Topics: Death, Entertainment, TV and Film, Internet, Horror, Interesting, Murder

Stewart Perrie
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