Source: Illustration of the Ostrich Inn, Lonnie Colson, 2016.
For The Revenant, the initial idea of that a nefarious innkeeper might be behind a series of murders came after a visit in 2016 to the Ostrich Inn of Colnbrook near London. According to local legend, the landlord, Jarman, and his wife were responsible for at least 60 deaths during the 14th century. They would ply unsuspecting wealthy travelers with alcohol until they grew sleepy and were ready to retire. The traveler would be directed to the "blue room," which had a specially-prepared bed. When the traveler was asleep, Jarman would pull a lever that caused the victim to fall headfirst into a large vat of boiling oil. The innkeeper and his wife would then rob the victim of his possession before disposing of the body. Some stories even said the victim was served up as stew for other travelers, serving as an inspiration the Sweeney Todd story. Eventually, one victim's donkey was recognized by locals, which led to the arrest and execution of both Jarman and his wife.
Below are a few photographs taken in 2016 while dining at the Ostrich Inn. The author chose the fish and chips to avoid any chance of being served an unfortunate traveler.