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Ray Kellogg directed The Killer Shrews and The Giant Gila Monster simultaneously. The films were shot in a period of six days for approximately $123 thousand. While the film may not have the best special effects, it makes up for it in sci-fi fun!
1. The monsters were creatively created.
The “killer shrews” were actually hand puppets and dogs in furry pelts. In actuality, a shrew is the size of a mouse. Of course, that’s only if a mad scientist hasn’t tinkered with them!
2. It was a kick!
Gordon McLendon not only financed the movie but got to act as well in the role of Dr. Baines. He said, “As I look back and view the picture now, I wasn’t very good, but then again, I didn’t give a damn. I just thought it’d be a kick to do it.” And a kick it was! He even got to “die” after being bitten by a shrew.
3. The ending was ice cold.
In the final scene of the movie, the remaining survivors swim safety away from the island to a boat. But filming the scene during the winter and in the water wasn’t easy. Ice had even started to form on the lake! “I had never been so cold in my life,” James Best said. “But I wrapped a blanket around Ingrid, hugged her as tight as possible, and shot two or three brandies. After a while, I didn’t care if it was cold or not.”