Haunted House Actors Describe The Moment A Guest Caused Them To Break Character

haunted house attraction
Robert Heiser on Unsplash

Its that time of year again. Time to get scared and get spooky.

One of the staples of this festive time is haunted houses. Over the last few decades the planning and launching of a House of Horrors has become an art form.

In fact there are houses you have to sign waivers for in order to enter.

So has to make one wonder, what sort of tales do the actors and people behind the scenes have to tell.

Redditor thotthebot wanted to hear from the thespians who partake in creating spooks for the masses by asking:

"Haunted house workers, what is something that a guest had said or done that made you break character?"

"Oh, HELL No!"

I was an actor at a haunted house years ago. We had separate rooms connected by hallways for guests to walk through (like, there was a murder room, a haunted house room, a circus themed room, and a zombie room). I worked in the zombie room, and played a zombie.

be quiet the walking dead GIFGiphy

The room was made up to look like a living room of a house that had been broken into by zombies-- furniture toppled over, lamps laying on the floor, the door hanging off the hinges, a broken window, blood everywhere, and a half-eaten body lying on the floor. I was to be hunched over the dead body, pretending to munch on it when the guests walked in. And I'll say, our make-up crew was skilled. I looked like something from The Walking Dead.

Well, this dude walks into my zombie room, he sees me hunched over the dead body, and I did this creepy thing where I slowly look up at him and stare with my mouth hanging open. He goes "Oh, HELL No!" and stumbled backwards onto the couch, tried to scramble off the couch, only to trip over the lamp that was on the floor, and wound up falling facedown on the floor.

I have to admit, I broke character and laughed. I couldn't help it.


"well I guess we don't go"

One night this couple comes in with a 3-4 year old girl. She is throwing a huge fit, kicking, screaming, crying, the whole 9 yards, she doesn't wanna go in.

Now, a logical human being would see this and say, "well I guess we don't go" but not these two idiots. They keep trying to force little girl to go through the house, but she won't budge. This is causing a bit of a scene as well as backing up the line. Myself and one or two other monsters tell them "look, you gotta either get her to go in, or you gotta leave, you're holding up the line" but they are adamant that she has to go through and she is not having it.

Now were pissed off because, why the hell are you trying to make this small child go through when she is obviously terrified and scared out of her freaking mind? We realize something has to happen, so we seek out one of the girls from further down the house who was a witch we called Baba Yaga since she was the most human looking of us. We told her the situation and asked if shed help walk the girl through the house, and she agreed.

So we bring Baba to the little girl, and she goes into this cartoonish Russian accent "HellO leetle gorrl, I am Baba Yaga the gOod weetch! I am going to heyalp you scare all the mon-stors awaY!" She takes the little girls hand and off they go. We run off through the house spreading the word, "If you see Baba with a little girl, let the little girl scare you". Sure enough, whenever they got to where one of the monsters was hiding, the little girl would yell "BOO!" and whoever was there would lose their marbles. Screaming, running around in circles, falling all over the place.

Sometimes there'd be more than one monster and they'd run into each other like the Three Stooges, all to the delight of the little girl, who was now giggling and jumping up and down, clapping her little hands, it was adorable. The adults that were with her look annoyed, but f**k them, the rest of the group that got lumped in with them were having a great time as well watching this tiny child scare the mean ugly monsters away.

I've never seen an entire house break character like that, but it was fun to be a part of.


Falling Back!

So I was stationed in a small room just off to the side of a long hallway with a strobe light at the end. It made it hard for guests to see down towards me, but very easy for me to see them. So one evening a group of a five teens come through; four girls with one guy leading them.

Just as they enter the hall, the guy turns around to talk with them. Having just been handed a golden ticket here, I sneak up right behind this guy. The girls all go stone silent and when the dude realizes they're looking at something beyond him, he turns around and finds me standing within inches of his face.

I give out the most guttural scream I can, and in response, the guy LEAPS backwards and knocks down all four girls behind him like they were bowling pins, leaving them all a tangled pile on the floor.

I literally could not hold it together. I had to run off into a staff only area because I was laughing so hard and could not stop. Easily one of my favorite memories from that place.


".... That's.....awful."

As a haunted house customer...

My Type 1 diabetic girlfriend and I were waiting to enter and begin the actual house. This was after the line to get in and the holding area for parties to be able to go together. There was this big demon tree thing that had an actor actually talking to us.

wtf GIFGiphy

"Tell me, mortals. What do you think your souls taste like?"

I looked to my girlfriend. Just a sheepish grin and a shrug. Then I chime in and respond

"Well, I don't know about me, but her soul would be pretty sweet because she has diabetes."

".... That's.....awful."

Still one of our favorite memories but that whole evening was just lovely and pleasant.


"is he real?"

Used to work in one years ago. I worked the crowd - but mainly by standing at the entrance in a coffin that was fitted with an undertaker. I walked in the undertaker's feet but my upper half was in the coffin. One night I was standing there. Bone still. I did my own makeup and frankly it was good. Made me look "fake".

I'm standing there completely silent and still. Some German woman; drunk (because you can smell the beer on her) goes "is he real?" Cue me to kick the back of the coffin as a jump scare. She then proceeds to back hand me across the face.

She did not get to go through the haunted house and was not refunded her money.


Hear Me!

I said "I'm gonna skin you b***h!"

She replied, "no you're the skinny b***h!"

I broke character and told her what I really said.

Maaan, I was there to scare not body shame.


The Reaper....

I (M) was playing a grim reaper statue that comes to life and lowers my (fake) scyth blade in front of guests from behind. This college age girl walks up to me and, convinced I was just a statue or a prop, grabs my parts to prove to her friends it was safe. I looked at her slowly and asked "So do you take me to dinner now or..." that was the best scream we got all night.


In the Hay...

Worked a haunted trail/hayride when I was younger. When we see someone clearly not into it we'd ask if they were okay and if not we had a codeword we'd pass down the line to let them just go through. Not sure if others worked like this though.


season 1 hay GIF by OutlanderGiphy

Not Here!!

Not a worker, but as a customer, my sister and I once took a wrong turn in the haunted house. We were cornered by a dude in a hockey mask who was revving his chainsaw as he approached and we were screaming in terror...

Then he took his mask off and said in exasperation, "guys you're not supposed to be back here." Then he shooed us back into the main hallway. Lol


The Autopsy....

Not a worker, but I got to witness it. The worker was dressed as a crazy doctor.

season 1 GIF by Twin Peaks on ShowtimeGiphy

We enter the room, and the worker says "Are you ready for you autopsy?" in a really creepy voice. My friend responds "...Yes?" The worker's face just changed from menacing to complete confusion, then she dropped the act and asked "Do you know what an autopsy is?" My friend did not know, so we had to explain it to her.


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