With ‘The Amityville Horror,’ One House. Many Haunts.

With ‘The Amityville Horror,’ One House. Many Haunts.

According to a spokesperson for the United States Patent and Trademark Office, in 2002 the trademark “The Amityville Horror” was federally registered by George Lutz for a series of nonfiction books about the paranormal, but the registration was canceled in 2008. In 2023, the trademark “The Amityville Horror” was federally registered for a series of horror films and TV shows, as well as horror film production and distribution, by MGM, and remains active.

Since the first film, the Amityville house has been renovated and its address changed. It’s currently occupied and still attracts curious visitors, but its Street View image on Google Maps is blurred out. A spokesperson for Google Maps declined to provide details about why or who requested it, citing privacy concerns.

Not everyone is thrilled with the expanding Amityville galaxy. In response to an email saying this story was happening, and seeking comment, Dennis M. Siry, the Amityville mayor, wrote: “Please don’t.”

The film historian Bryan Thomas Norton is no fan of the new movies.

“Amityville is basically worth bupkis as far as credible horror movie currency goes,” said Norton, whose book “For God’s Sake, Get Out!,” about the canonical Amityville films, comes out this fall.

Paula M. Uruburu, a professor emeritus in literature and film at Hofstra University, grew up near the Amityville house, and as a teenager was friends with Dawn DeFeo. A fan of the original film, she hopes the seemingly unquenchable thirst for “Amityville” movies doesn’t overshadow the tragedy behind it.

“The real horror was the murder of the family and going to the funeral and seeing six coffins at the church,” she said.

Like it or not, she added, a lovely Long Island village may forever be an indelible shorthand.

“Amityville,” she said, “means horror.”

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