'The Haunting of Hill House' ending was originally going to be so much darker

scandal 07/11/2018

If there's one new show on Netflix you need to watch, it has to be The Haunting of Hill House.

But considering you're reading this, you've no doubt already finished it (or else you're setting yourself up for some serious spoilers).

If you HAVEN'T finished the series yet, you should stop reading now because we're going to be talking about some serious spoilers.

After a rollercoaster of emotions in the final episode, we eventually see the Crains escape Hill House (well, all except one) and finally live a normal life. We see Steven and his wife expecting a baby and Luke celebrating his two-year sobriety but according to showrunner Mike Flanagan, the original ending was going to be much darker.

Speaking with Thrillist, Mike said:

One thing I can say is that we talked for a very, very long time about putting the Red Room window, that weird vertical window, in the background of this shot. And I ultimately decided not to. It was too cruel. But there was a lot of talk that this peace might not be real. In the version we ended up going with, I think it absolutely is real.

Mike went on to share more facts about the show that 100% make us want to go back and watch it all over again (but maybe we'll leave out that scene with Theo and Shirley in the car on their way back to Hill House...)

1. Speaking of that scene, Nell popping out from the back seat was written into the script but Mike had her scare the girls earlier than what was written so they could get a genuine reaction.

2. Episode 6 was actually made up of just five insanely long shots, with the longest being 17 minutes (which they'd have to start all over from the beginnning if someone messed up their lines)

"Hill House was on one stage, the funeral home was on another, and we had to build this hallway between the two stages so we could physically walk from one stage to the other and step into Hill House without cutting," Mike said. "We rehearsed it with our second team stand-ins, who basically performed the entire episode as actors for about five weeks straight ... After a month of that, we brought the cast in, and we were able to show them the episode."

That means in the shot when old Hugh walks in and sees the younger versions of his kids and then after the camera circles around him he sees them as adults, they literally had to run and swap places behind the camera!

3. Mike said he wanted the audience to feel like the house was always looking at you so they filled it with wallpaper with facial patterns on it, put faces on all the door handles and the desk drawers as well as designing the interior so the placment of the windows and fireplaces made it look like a face.

4. The actor who plays young Hugh (Henry Thomas) is the same actor who played Elliott in E.T.

5. The Hill House set was a fully functional, two-storey home that you could walk right through including that massive staircase.

"There’s no way we were going to make this without having that beautiful spiral staircase; it’s such a striking and iconic image in the book," Mike said. "I think it’s three stories tall, and when we would go up the stairs the cast would start to feel a little bit of vertigo. Kind of up by the ceiling of the sound stage, you can see through it and as you look down at your feet you can see the floor through the whole thing. It just seems like this very strange vortex, this spiral that seems endless when you’re at the very top of it."

Read the full list here.