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‘The Blair Witch Project’ Didn’t Pay Its Stars, Actors Lament

They struggled with low-paying jobs while the film earned millions worldwide.

‘The Blair Witch Project’ became a massive hit in 1999. Despite this success, the three main actors say they didn’t get their fair share of the profits.

Heather Donahue, Michael C. Williams, and Joshua Leonard recently shared their story with Variety. They revealed that they were still working low-paying jobs and struggling to make ends meet after the film became popular. Leonard said that they were all having a hard time paying rent:

“My agent asked me what the f*ck I was doing. I said, ‘You know that I haven’t made any money.’ We were all struggling to pay the rent.”

Donahue, Williams, and Leonard played a big role in making ‘The Blair Witch Project.’ They operated the sound equipment and cameras themselves and improvised most of what viewers saw in the movie. Donahue said it became clear they weren’t going to get anything at one point:

“It became clear that, wow, we were not going to get anything. We were being cut out of something that we were intimately involved with creating.”

‘The Blair Witch Project’ earned $248 million worldwide on a tiny budget of around $35,000. The film started the found footage trend in horror movies and made people wonder if it was real or fake.

‘The Blair Witch Project’ Is Among The Classics

‘The Blair Witch Project’ inspired many other found footage horror movies like ‘Paranormal Activity,’ ‘Rec,’ and the ‘V/H/S’ series. Williams shared that he felt embarrassed for letting this happen to him:

“You’ve got to put that stuff away, because you’re a f*cking loser if you can’t. Because everybody’s wondering what happened, and your wife is in the grocery line and she can’t pay because a check bounced. You’re in the most successful independent movie of all time, and you can’t take care of your loved ones.”

Lionsgate and Blumhouse announced a new multi-film reboot of ‘The Blair Witch Project’ this year at CinemaCon. The original actors weren’t told about these new plans, and they wrote an open letter asking for compensation for their past work and for any future use of their images.

‘The Blair Witch Project’ can currently be streamed on Prime Video.

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