Famed horror director Tobe Hooper dead at 74

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The director was best known for the 1974 movie The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, which tells the tale of a group of friends who encounter a family of cannibals featuring central villain Leatherface.

Horror legend Tobe Hooper has died aged 74 in Los Angeles it has been confirmed.

Variety, the industry magazine for Hollywood, first reported his death.

Tributes are pouring in on Twitter from Hooper's fellow directors including Doctor Strange helmer (and fellow horror filmmaker) Scott Derrickson, who tweeted a photo of Leatherface from the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre and called Hooper "the king of transgressive horror".

Hooper's best-known movies include "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre", "Salem's Lot", "The Funhouse", "Poltergeist", "Lifeforce" and "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2".

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, which was banned in Ireland due to the realistic violence, was made for under $300,000 but made over $30 million at the U.S. box office. It came to him, he said, in the hardware department of a Sears-like store during a busy Christmas season, with his low tolerance for crowds as a catalyst.

Do you have any strong memories of Hooper's films? The filmography of Tobe Hooper has it all. I don't know if that's naive or idealistic, but that's how I'm choosing to see it.

The film was controversial.

The film was a box office hit and gained notoriety for its grizzly violence, having it banned in several countries including the U.K. By modern standards, it's actually not that bloody.

The "Texas Chain Saw Massacre" was one of the most influential horror films ever made. But its renown steadily grew, and many appreciated its harrowing craft, comparing it to Alfred Hitchcock's "Pyscho" (which also took inspiration from Ed Gein). "They would get out of my way.' That birthed the idea of the chain saw". Later, it would become part of the permanent collection at New York's Museum of Modern Art.

The 1982 "Poltergeist", written and produced by Steven Spielberg, also became a classic of the genre. A poorly received but profitable remake followed in 2003. His last film was the 2013 horror Djinn.

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