The Avatar actor was horrified by the 1965 creepfest Two on a Guillotine.


Stephen Lang has been in some seriously terrifying films, from Michael Mann's 1986 movie Manhunter to the two Don't Breathe horror thrillers, in which he played a blind and extremely dangerous Gulf War veteran. But what was the first film to have the actor holding his own breath in terror? The answer is director Willian Conrad's 1965 movie Two on a Guillotine about a woman named Cassie (Connie Stevens) who must stay at a supposedly haunted mansion to claim her inheritance.

"A film which scared the s‑‑‑ out of me was called Two on a Guillotine," says Lang, whose many other acting credits include Tombstone and Avatar. "I believe Cesar Romero is in it. If I'm not mistaken, Dean Jones is in it, which would be totally weird, because he was sort of a Disney guy. But that scared the living s‑‑‑ out of me. I was in a movie theater when I saw it. I couldn't really leave, you know?"

Stephen Lang; Two on a Guillotine
Stephen Lang, and Connie Stevens in 'Two on a Guillotine'
| Credit: David Livingston/Getty Images; Everett Collection

Other films which frightened the actor include 1931's James Whale-directed Bride of Frankenstein, William Friedkin's record-breaking 1973 shocker The Exorcist, and Richard Donner's supernatural thriller The Omen, from 1976.

"I don't go to see horror movies, they scare me," confesses Lang. "I can't say I'm a fan of the genre, [but] I'm a fan of specific films. Bride of Frankenstein, I loved that movie. It scared me just enough, but what was so brilliant about that movie was it had a great sense of humor as well. So, yeah, it was scary, spooky, eerie and everything, but it also sort of delighted me. I do regard The Exorcist as not [one of ] the best horror movies ever made, but one of the finest American films ever made. It's an extraordinary movie. I've probably seen it 40 or 50 times and it's only in the last 20 times that I can actually watch it alone. And just to do a shout-out to the late great Richard Donner, who just passed away, I was a huge fan of The Omen for a number of reasons, not least of which is all the wonderful character work that's being done by David Warner, I loved Lee Remick very much, the wonderful Leo McKern, all kinds of good stuff being done."

Watch the trailer for Two on a Guillotine above.

Sign up for Entertainment Weekly's free daily newsletter to get breaking TV news, exclusive first looks, recaps, reviews, interviews with your favorite stars, and more.

Related content: