The Pre - production of the The Exorcist
As I have already mentioned the film Exorcist is based on the same name novel by William Peter Blatty. The production team shoot the Exorcist Film not only in U.S.A. but also in Iraq.
The director of the the Exorcist William Friedkin, wanted to be the film very realistic, as a result almost all effect in the film are mechanical. The exterior’s of McNeil house was shoot in Georgetown, U.S.A. The Interiors of MacNeil house where built at New York’s Ceco Studios.
The Director of Exorcist
It was William Peter Blatty's idea to choose William Friedkin, to direct Exorcist. William Peter Blatty wanted the Exorcist have energy as it was William Friedkin’s previous masterpiece “The French Connection ”.
William Friedkin used D.W. Griffith’s manipulation techniques of the actors to get desired performance. Among the applied techniques where firing a gun without warring on the set to elicit shock from Jason Miller for a shot, also, he slapped Father William O’ Malley to add intensity as he administered the last Rites to the during Father Damien Karras.
Friedkin, routinely filmed the actors unaware, zeroed in on her pain and used the shot. Linda Blair (the possessed Regan McNeil) and Ellen Brustyn (Mac Neil) suffered by pain during the shooting of the special effects scenes. Linda Blair’s screams “Stop it! Stop it! It hurts” are genuine while she was pulled back and forth on the bed and unfortunately for her the rig came loose during shooting and Linda felt the deadly pain.
Also Chris MacNeil (Ellen Burstyn) is thrown across the room after witnessing the crucifix masturbation. Jason Miller (Father Damien Karras) receives a pea soup - in the face (it was used as Regan’s Vomit) surprisingly and unexpectably.
I need to highlight that during the shooting of Exorcist, there were overruns - William Friedkin blamed for the overruns the crushed set and he announced to journalist that:
“There are strange images and visions that showed up on film that were never planned”, also he cited the following real events as empirical evidence to his opinion:
(1). Jack McCorman died shortly after the completion of his role.
(2). Max von Syder’s brother died on the day the actor arrived on the Exorcist set.
(3). The statue of demon Pazusu went missing en route to the Middle East and turned up two weeks later in Hong - Kong.
(4). The set inexplicably burned down.
William Friedkin asked the technical advisor of the film Father Bermingham to exorcise the set. Father Bermingham refused because there was the danger to spread fear and panic to cast and to the crew.
William Friedkin is responsible for the use of sentences like “Your mother is %^&**(( in hell” and he used sounds from real exorcism.