Maniac is a 1980 American exploitation slasher film directed by William Lustig and written by Joe Spinell and C. A. Rosenberg. The plot focuses on a disturbed and traumatized serial killer who scalps his victims. Spinell also developed the story and stars as the lead character. Many scenes had to be filmed guerrilla-style because the production could not afford city permits. The infamous shotgun sequence was one of them; it was filmed in just an hour. Tom Savini got the part of the male shotgun victim, because he had already made a cast of his own head. He then filled the head with leftover food from lunch and fake blood and fired live ammunition at it. Immediately after firing the shotgun, Savini threw it into the trunk of a waiting car driven by a friend of Spinell’s, an assistant named Luke Walter, so they could avoid being caught by police. Originally considered an exploitation film, Maniac has since attained cult status. The Hollywood Reporter called it “something of a grubby touchstone among genre fans.”

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