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Helter Skelter (TV Mini-Series 1976) Poster

Trivia

In preparation for the role of Charles Manson, Steve Railsback locked himself in a closet for two hours every day.
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The film almost was not shown in Los Angeles because network executives were afraid that this would stir up bad memories, especially since this had been only seven years since the murders.
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The Manson Family's car was the original one used by them, which was loaned by the authorities.
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When Steve Railsback received a call to come to Los Angeles to read for the role of Charles Manson in the movie, he auditioned by reading the speech Charles Manson gave in the jury-less courtroom. He had the role three days later.
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Much of the dialogue used in the courtroom scenes was taken directly from court transcripts.
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While the LaBianca house was used in the movie, the Tate house was not.
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Martin Scorsese was originally offered the role of Charles Manson.
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Actor George DiCenzo, who played Vincent Bugliosi, passed away on August 9, 2010, forty one years to the day after the Tate murders took place.
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According to a Los Angeles Herald-Examiner TV Weekly article published the week of June 6-12, 1976, the two-part, two-night series aired on various CBS affiliates April 1 and 2, 1976. Due to the subject matter, some markets either preempted showing the film altogether or delayed airing the film into the late night time slots of 11:30 PM.

In the case of Los Angeles CBS owned-and-operated KNXT-TV (now KCBS-TV), "Helter Skelter" aired June 10 and 11, 1976. The reason given for the delay was Vincent Bugliosi, author of the book and the prosecuting attorney in the Tate-LaBianca murder trial, was running for office as Los Angeles County District Attorney. Due to the 1975 death of Joseph P. Busch Jr., a special election was held on June 8, 1976. Bugliosi lost the race to incumbent interim District Attorney John Van de Kamp.
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The print of the 2004 DVD release of the two-part miniseries displays the closing credits for Part II. For unknown reasons, the closing credits for Part I was removed.
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