IGN FilmForce continues to dole out some great pre-release coverage for Silent Hill, the based-on-a-video game horror flick from Christophe Gans (Brotherhood of the Wolf) and Roger Avary (The Rules of Attraction). Seems that the screenwriter used the actual town of Centralia, PA, as some sort of inspiration … and it sounds like a pretty creepy place.
"In 1981, over 1000 people lived in the town of Centralia, Pennsylvania. But twenty years earlier, a poorly contained trash fire had set an underground coal vein alight. The mines and subterranean shafts continued to burn, making the area a danger zone, so an evacuation of the residents of Centralia began.
It never finished, however. 11 stalwart Centralians remain, even though all the town’s buildings have been condemned and the borough’s zip code has been revoked.
You can read a brief piece on Centralia, which screenwriter Roger Avary discovered while conducting research for the Silent Hill screenplay, here. In a way, the film version of the village of Silent Hill is inspired by the real-life Pennsylvanian burg."
IGNFF also links to a site where you can see a little pre-release footage of the Silent Hill insanity.