2003’s Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake actually reshot a scene from a prior sequel that the MPAA had demanded be cut to get an R rating. By the time New Line Cinema and Platinum Dunes got around to remaking The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, it had been nearly 30 years since director Tobe Hooper’s 1974 original. In that time, three sequels had been produced, none of which had managed to even come close to the reputation of quality earned by the first film.
That was even with Hooper returning to helm 1986’s The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2, as while the sequel has its fans today, it disappointed most at the time by sporting a completely different tone and style, and getting much sillier instead of more horrific. 1990’s Leatherface: Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3 tried its best to make the franchise serious again, but didn’t entirely succeed, and suffered from a troubled production that led to a pretty muddled story. 1994’s Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation is a weird mess that’s cited by many as one of the worst horror sequels ever, even with future stars Matthew McConaughey and Renee Zellweger in the cast.
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While remaking The Texas Chainsaw Massacre drew the usual jeers that come when any new remake of a classic is announced, the film had an advantage, in the sense that the sequels hadn’t been up to par. It was hard to get worse than The Next Generation, and thankfully, the remake tops it by a country pile. Yet, for a pivotal scene, the 2003 movie actually went back and drew inspiration from 1990’s Leatherface.
Texas Chainsaw Massacre’s Remake Saw Leatherface Under The Mask
As mentioned above, Leatherface: Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3 was an all-around troubled production. This extended to post-production, as the sequel did battle with the MPAA ratings board. It actually became the final film to receive the dreaded X rating for its first cut, before the MPAA invented the NC-17 to replace it. Thus, there was a lot of deleted material along the way, and one such scene involved seeing Leatherface’s hideous unmasked face, for what would’ve been the first time in franchise history. Sadly, it was deemed too disturbing, and had to be cut to earn the desired R rating.
When it came time to make The Texas Chainsaw Massacre‘s 2003 remake, the decision was made to effectively reshoot that scene that had almost appeared previously, and reveal Leatherface’s shocking unmasked visage. As seen in the picture above, it survived into the final cut this time, showing off Leatherface’s unsettling lack of a nose. To date, this is still the only time fans have been given a close-up look at what lurks behind Leatherface’s mask of flesh. While what’s seen is certainly gruesome, one wonders how gross the prior film’s version must have looked to get slapped with an X rating.
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