Somber news hit fans of the horror genre last week. Beloved actor and horror icon, Sid Haig, passed on to the great beyond.
Haig was admitted to the hospital in early September to receive care after falling in his home. While he was recovering, his condition grew worse, and he developed a lung infection after vomiting in his sleep. He finally passed away on Sept. 21, 2019, due to complications.
Though he was already 80 when he passed, for many of his fans, it felt far too soon. I know, because I am one of them.
Sid Haig was born Sidney Eddie Mosesian on July 14, 1939, to parents Roxy and Haig Mosesian in Fresno, California. Haig’s career started at the ripe old age of seven when he decided to take up dancing, seeing as his tall, lanky body was too uncoordinated for anything else. From there onward, Sid took up drumming and acting, eventually finding himself enrolled into one of the most notorious fine art schools in the world, Pasadena Playhouse.
He quickly found himself getting all kinds of work in Hollywood. His most notable roles at that time were in Jack Hill’s films, such as “The Host”, “Spider Baby or, the Maddest Story Ever Told”, “Coffy”, and finally “Foxy Brown”. If that was not impressive enough, he also had minor roles in both George Lucas’ “THX 1138” and the James Bond film “Diamonds Are Forever”. At the same time, he continued to appear in what he claims as “over 350” television series.
Now, while this may sound like any aspiring actor’s dream, it took its toll on Haig’s perception of himself. In ‘92, he decided to retire, merely stating, “I just didn’t want to play stupid heavies anymore. They just kept giving me the same parts but just putting different clothes on me.”
This was not the end, though, as Sid did still continue acting past his “retirement.” He appeared in Quentin Tarantino’s “Jackie Brown,” a role Tarantino claims to have written just for Haig. Things seemed to keep going on like that for Mr. Haig. He continued to own/act in community theater and work on projects that mattered to him and let him not just be those “stupid heavies” anymore.
Even though it seemed his life was going perfect, it wasn’t until 2003 that Haig’s career and life would genuinely change forever. It was the year that millennials and horror fans will always remember because it was the year that Rob Zombie’s film debut, “House of 1000 Corpses,” premiered. Haig’s chilling and downright terrifying performance as the killer clown Captain Spaulding instantly stuck with audiences and made the film a horror/cult classic. He dealt every line and every aspect of the character enough charisma to scare the audience as much as it made the audience love him. So much so, in fact, that the movie’s fan base and notoriety would help it gain enough traction to warrant a sequel: “The Devil’s Rejects.”
There was a third movie filmed, and it came out this year for three days in theaters from Sept. 16-19. The film, “3 from Hell” will be getting a Blu-ray and DVD release on Oct. 15. This most likely marks the end of “The Devil’s Rejects Trilogy” because, without Captain Spaulding, I’m sure any future movie would never feel the same. There are also two other horror movies set to come out that Haig had already filmed his parts for “Hanukkah” and “Abruptio.” However, I believe these will be the last three films of Haig with him now gone.
Mr. Haig was a man extremely dedicated, not just to film and acting, but specifically to horror as a whole. He was well known for being at nearly every meet and greet, every convention, everywhere a person could hope to see him. He was an icon, and I believe he deserves recognition on this spookiest of months. I thank you, Mr. Haig, for all you have done as a performer, a person, and of course, as Captain Spaulding. You will surely be missed.
“If you’re not passionate about what you want to do, you won’t be good at it.”– Sid Haig