Gunnar Hansen dies at 68; played Leatherface in ‘Texas Chain Saw Massacre’

A spokesman says Gunnar Hansen, who played the iconic villain Leatherface in the original “Texas Chain Saw Massacre,” died Saturday of pancreatic cancer at his home in Maine. He was 68.

Hansen starred in the 1974 film that has become a classic among horror-movie aficionados and spawned a series of sequels. In the movie, friends visiting their grandfather’s house are hunted by Leatherface, a chain-saw wielding killer.


Gunnar Hansen: In the Nov. 9 California section, the obituary of Gunnar Hansen, who played Leatherface in the original “Texas Chain Saw Massacre,” referred to the character in one instance as Leatherneck. —
Hansen’s character in the movie “is one of the most iconic evil figures in the history of cinema,” said his agent, Mike Eisenstadt, who confirmed the death.

Eisenstadt says that in 2013 Hansen published his book “Chain Saw Confidential,” which gave readers a behind-the-scenes look at how the film was made.

Eisenstadt says Hansen was born in Reykjavik, Iceland. He came to the U.S. and studied at the University of Texas, where he majored in English and Scandinavian Studies.


Surviving him is his partner of 13 years, Betty Tower.


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