The Human Centipede (First Sequence) (2009) Poster


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Many actresses walked out of the auditions in disgust after discovering what the role actually entailed.
When approaching investors prior to filming, the filmmakers told them they wanted to make an international horror film that involved stitching people together but did not mention how exactly they would be stitched, fearing the mouth-to-anus aspect would put the investors off.
When the Toronto Underground Cinema showed this film, there was a "centipede deal" where if two tickets were purchased, the third one would be free.
Dieter Laser stayed in character throughout the filming, deliberately keeping himself away from the other actors and crew as much as possible.
The paintings of conjoined twins displayed throughout Heiter's villa were painted by Tom Six, which he felt contributed to the atmosphere in the house.
Director Tom Six contacted a real surgeon for the medical human centipede design which grants the film the tagline "100% medically accurate".
Roger Ebert refused to assign this film a star rating for his review (not to be confused with giving it a zero star rating, which he hands out to the very worst films that he sees), saying it doesn't really matter whether the film is perceived as good or bad. He closes the review by writing, "[The film] is what it is and occupies a world where the stars don't shine."
The concept of the film arose from a joke Tom Six made with friends about punishing a child molester by stitching his "mouth to the ass of a very fat truck driver."
The actors playing the centipede were given massages at the end of every day's filming due to being on their hands and knees all day long.
The two female leads were cast in New York City. Moreover, Tom Six showed a drawing of the human centipede to all the actresses who showed up to the casting sessions.
Akihiro Kitamura auditioned via Skype.
Although the film is set in Germany, filming took place in the Netherlands due to the countries' similar landscapes. Heiter's home, where most of the film takes place, was a villa in the Netherlands found by the production team. The property was in a residential area and not surrounded by woodland as it appears in the film, but by other houses, so the filmmakers had some difficulty ensuring the other houses did not appear in shot. Real hospital beds and intravenous drips were rented from a local hospital.
Some scenes of the movie are so controversial, some people walked out during test screenings.
Josef Heiter's first name references Josef Mengele, a Nazi doctor who carried out torture experiments on prisoners in Auschwitz concentration camp. The surname Heiter, literally meaning "cheerful" in German, is a reference to lesser-known Nazi war criminals, doctors Fetter and Richter.
The defecation in the mouth scene was done in a single take.
The opening scene, which only featured Dieter Laser and Rene de Wit, was shot on the last day of filming.
Those are real shivers from Ashley C. Williams when her character falls into the swimming pool as the heating wasn't working so the water was really cold.
The cage the human centipede was kept in was a real dog cage.
Dieter Laser supplied most of his own wardrobe.
Dieter Laser came up with the ideas to both smell the pus and lick the blood on the stairs.
Not surprisingly, Pier Paolo Pasolini's Salo was a leading inspiration for Tom Six.
Dieter Laser was Tom Six's first choice to play the mad doctor.
Dieter Laser came up with the idea of Dr. Heiter eating fruit from a can.
Dieter Laser is wearing Tom Six's mirror sunglasses in the opening scene.
The names of the two policemen, Voller and Krantz, means Full and Circle in German.


The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

Akihiro Kitamura wrote the monologue he says before he commits suicide.
Body Count: 6
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