South Bay

Actress Helen Mirren Slated to Star in Horror Film Based on Winchester Mystery House

A popular and historical haunted house attraction in the South Bay appears to be getting the Hollywood treatment.

Academy Award winner Helen Mirren is finalizing a deal to play Sarah Winchester, the heiress to the Winchester Arms brand, in an upcoming supernatural thriller based on the Winchester Mystery House in San Jose, Dateline reported Sunday. 

The working title of the film is, aptly, Winchester. Australian directors Michael Spierig and Peter Spierig are set to write and direct based on an original story penned by Tom Vaughan, according to The Wrap. Principal photography is rumored to begin in 2017 at the famed home, which is a popular tourist attraction.

Legend has it that Sarah Winchester went mad after the death of her husband and child in the late 19th century. Believing she was cursed by the people who were shot with Winchester rifles, the heiress continued construction on her home, installing trap doors, secret passageways and trick staircases that might confuse the spirits that haunted her. 

Winchester oversaw the construction for about 38 consecutive years, turning the once-modest farmhouse into a 24,000 square foot architectural oddity.

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