On this Date in 1996, Twister is Released in Theaters, Making Oklahoma the Scariest Place in the World to Me
Want to know what the scariest movie in the world to me as a seven-year-old was? Twister.
Today I learned May 10,1996 is the release date for Twister. As soon as I saw that today, childhood fears crept back into my head. I didn't live in an area that had tornadoes, so this was a new concept to me at seven. This movie scares the s*** out of you as soon as it starts.
NOT EVEN FIVE MINUTES INTO THE MOVIE DOES SOMEONE GET SUCKED INTO A TORNADO. What sucks is my best friend at the time LOVED this movie. So every time I spent the night at his place he wanted to watch it. Oh I guess I am having nightmares again.
I remember being a kid and going to Universal Studios and finding out they had a Twister "ride". In my brain, I thought you would be in that red truck riding around Oklahoma and spinning around. I refused to ride it in the late 90's. I conquered my fear as an adult and you know what? It's the lamest thing in the world. The Cat in the Hat ride is scarier than this thing.
It's literally just a sound stage where a tornado comes through. I am one of those people that wants to do everything at a theme park, but I am glad this got replaced. It's now a Jimmy Fallon ride, not sure if that is an upgrade.
As much as this movie scared the s*** out of me as a kid. We all know it's one of the biggest movies of the 90's. It made almost half a billion dollars worldwide at the box office that year, only losing out to "Independence Day" as the biggest movie of the year.
Hollywood wanted the movie filmed in California, but it was actually shot in Oklahoma. Cities such as Fairfax, Ralston, Maysville, Norman, Kaw City, Guthrie, Stillwater, Wakita, Ponca City and Pauls Valley were all seen in the film. Some scenes were shot in Ohio, Iowa and even that scary opening part. Actually shot in Canada, but the vast majority of the film was shot in Oklahoma.
Here's a fun fact for you, the most famous scene is probably when the cow is circling around the truck. That animation is actually just one of the zebras from the film 'Jumangi' when they're all being sucked into the board game at the end. Also, another fun fact, Twister is the first ever movie to be released on DVD.
How about some not fun stories? Well this movie kicked the crap out of the actors. Especially Helen Hunt and Bill Paxton (R.I.P.). They used lights to mimic lightening that were so bright on the set, it literally sunburned their eyes and they were temporarily blind for a few hours. You can hear Bill talk about the experience above.
Also filming of Twister took place in 1995. Two weeks into the filming, the Oklahoma City bombing happened at Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. Production was put on hold and members of the cast and crew helped in recovery efforts in the city.
So, do I like anything about the movie 'Twister"? Well, any movie that shows some love to drive in does get a nod of approval. However, it gets destroyed by a tornado, so that also hurt my soul. I think I actually saw this movie for the first time at a drive in. So maybe in my dumb seven-year-old brain I thought a twister was going to get me there that night.
If you love the movie and need something to do tonight. Give it a watch on its anniversary.