The horror, the horror – Remembering Poltergeist’s Heather O’Rourke

They’re here!”

Only 27 days to Halloween!

As Halloween creeps closer, TVTA remembers the American child actress and star of Poltergeist movie trilogy Heather Michelle O’Rourke. O’Rourke (born 27 December, 1975) played the character Carol Anne Freeling, youngest child of the Freeling family who becomes the conduit for terrifying supernatural entities that haunt her family. Sadly O’Rourke died during the making of Poltergeist III of cardiac arrest caused by septic shock due to intestinal stenosis. She died on the first of February 1988 aged 12 years old. Poltergeist III was released posthumously and dedicated to her. As well as her role in the trilogy, O’Rourke appeared in the TV series Happy Days, Fantasy Island, CHiPs and others.

I’d rank the original Poltergeist high in my list of favourite horror films, with O’Rourke’s performance being a standout. Below are Japanese chirashi movie posters for Poltergeist and Poltergeist III.

Poltergeist. 1982.

Poltergeist. 1982. Japanese chirashi. Front.

Poltergeist. 1982. Japanese chirashi. Back.

Poltergeist III. 1988.

Poltergeist III. 1988. Japanese chirashi. Front.

Poltergeist III. 1988. Japanese chirashi. Back.


Did we mention Halloween is one of TVTA’s favourite annual events?   

Look out for more special Halloween posts coming soon! 

18 thoughts on “The horror, the horror – Remembering Poltergeist’s Heather O’Rourke

  1. Poltergeist, man… terrified me when I first seen it. Good grief. The sequels weren’t dreadful, either. Not great, but certainly worth watching. That image on the second poster is even creepy today…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi TVTA, wow, I’ve never seen a promotional leaflet/flyer/Chirashi that had newspaper cuttings depicting the news of it’s child actor having died before. I know it is a very strange story surrounding Poltergeist but just wow. Thanks for the chills down my spine.

    Liked by 1 person

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