Helen Mirren’s real-life horror film Winchester gets a haunting new title

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Because the upcoming horror flick Winchester is actually more about one of the most haunted houses in America than anything else, the title has now been changed to Winchester: The House That Ghosts Built. There is a very literal meaning there, too.

Starring Helen Mirren, the film delves into the dark recesses of of one woman’s mind as she struggles to fend off vengeful spirits that may not be haunting just her imagination. Sarah Winchester was the wife of Winchester rifle mogul William Winchester (the original model was called the Volcanic Repeater—creepy). The Winchesters amassed a bloodstained fortune during the Civil War, when thousands of these weapons turned men into corpses.

That was when suspicious things began happening.

After Sarah’s infant daughter died of a mysterious wasting illness, she became unnaturally withdrawn for years and was often on the edge of madness. Her husband then succumbed to tuberculosis. Sarah was so immersed in grief that she sought out a psychic, and he claimed that her dead husband wanted to warn that he and their only child had been sent to the grave early because of a curse that overshadowed the Winchester family. Ghosts were seeking revenge for their own demise in battle. The psychic advised her to move out west and start building a house that she would never finish, because if she ever finished it, she would die.

The resulting San Jose mansion was purposely built into an enormous labyrinth meant to confuse phantom visitors. Whether that actually worked was questionable, because there have been been many paranormal phenomena reported over the years, including slamming doors and shattering windows, disembodied voices, footsteps, eerie lights and doors opening themselves.

Winchester: The House That Ghosts Built will attempt to look into Sarah’s deteriorating sanity through the eyes of skeptical psychiatrist Eric Price (Jason Clarke). He tries to attribute Sarah’s fears to delusions and hallucinations—until he starts believing them himself.

This real-life horror will now be releasing on February 2 instead of February 23. If you really want to spook yourself out till then, you can actually visit the Winchester Mansion.

(via Dread Central)