To celebrate the US release of Eli Roth’s sick, twisted flick, Hostel (read our retro review here), turning 15 on January 6, 2021, we have compiled a list of fun facts about the film. Ah, yes, the movie that made everyone scared to stay in a hostel while traveling. Thanks, Eli Roth!
College students Paxton (Jay Hernandez: Hostel Part II 2007) and Josh (Hostel Part II 2007) are travelling across Europe with their Icelandic friend, Óli (Hostel Part II 2007), when they meet a man who convinces them to visit a hostel. When they reach the sleeping quarters, they encounter some pretty terrifying situations.
Ten Fun Facts:
1) They stay in Room 237. This is a reference to The Shining (1980).
2) The interior of the slaughterhouse was filmed at a functioning mental hospital in Prague built in 1910 in a wing that had been closed for over 50 years. Building 10, where many of the scenes were filmed, was where the craziest patients were taken. The basement was so creepy that Roth had a string quartet playing classical music to make it feel cozier while shooting.
3) The character of Natalya was deliberately shown to get uglier throughout the film, just like her personality.
4) Over 150 gallons of blood were used in the making of Hostel, nearly three times the amount used on Eli Roth’s first film Cabin Fever (2002).
5) Roth initially wanted to do a documentary on the subject of the “murder vacation.” However, as he was doing research, he found it almost impossible to get into contact with people involved in such a business, and realized that he could put himself in danger just for asking around. He decided to use the subject for a fiction film instead.
6) Roth asked the President of Iceland for an official pardon for making Icelanders look like drunken sex maniacs with the character of Óli. The president laughed and gave him the pardon, saying it represented a side of Icelanders not shown in films. Roth also issued a formal apology to the Icelandic Minister of Culture for all the damage Hostel may cause to Iceland’s reputation.
7) Eli Roth wrote the role of Óli for Eythor Gudjonsson after he met him doing press for Cabin Fever (2002) in Iceland. Roth was so taken with Eythor’s charisma and charm that he promised he’d put him in a film one day. Eythor was surprised when he saw that the director had followed through with his promise and happily accepted the role.
8) At around 9 minutes, Quentin Tarantino appears as a shirtless German man screaming from a window.
9) Roth put nearly every single crew member in the film, including production accountant Mark Bakunas, who appears on a poster in the background of three different scenes for his fictional rock band, Bakunas and the Essential Elements. The other members of the band on the poster are co-producers Mike Fleiss, Chris Briggs, and Daniel Frisch, production and costume designer Franco-Giacomo Carbone, and Roth.
10) This film knocked The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (2005) off the top spot at the box office, both in theaters and when they were released on DVD. The production budget of The Chronicles of Narnia is nearly 50 times the $4 million production budget of Hostel (2005), which earned $20 million in its opening weekend alone.
So, what did you think of our top 10 Hostel trivia bits? Did we forget something? Let us know in the comments!
Take a look at our retro review of Hostel here.