Interview: Director David Gordon Green And Producer Jason Blum Talk ‘Halloween Kills’, Trauma & More
Over 40 years have passed since audiences were introduced to Laurie Strode and Michael Myers for the first time. But what happened to the other residents of Haddonfield who were affected by Michael’s murder spree? Well, this is exactly what Halloween Kills attempts to explore.
I had the fortune of being part of a roundtable interview with Halloween Kills director David Gordon Green and producer Jason Blum where the pair spoke about exploring the trauma of those from the original 1978 film, what they hope audience reaction to the film will be, and more.
Check out the Halloween Kills interview with David Gordon Green and Jason Blum below:
Amazing job on this film. This is the Michael Myers that I absolutely wanted to see. David, what makes Michael, in this film, scarier than any other in the franchise?
David Gordon Green: Well, I think I put that on you. I think he has this expressionless, emotionless face that I think we project what we want on him. I mean, he’s a little off because they left him to burn in the basement, but he’s out. And then now we get to experience all hell breaking loose through his point of view.
Jason, I want to ask you, what is it that has made Michael Myers so timeless over 40 years now?
Jason Blum: You know, it’s funny. I have a real belief that if you belabour a creative decision, it often gets worse. Michael Myers was created, you know the first movie John Carpenter made was made for 14 dollars. They went down to the drug store to get that mask – it’s a famous story. And, you know, he shot the movie like we shoot Blumhouse movies. You know, for a real low budget and a schedule.
And I think David will agree. He may have a different take on this, but I think when you have to kind of move, sometimes and that makes for amazing creative decisions. I think for whatever reason the stars align, John Carpenter’s a genius and Michael Myers just checked every single box of what makes a character evil. And I think that that’s resonated for 40 years. It’s the James Bond of horror franchises, Halloween, because I think very specifically of the character of Michael Myers and of what John Carpenter did in the first movie. John got everything right and invented a character that people cannot get enough of.
I wanted to ask you a little bit about maybe creating the stunts in the film and what that experience was like of really maybe making them more elaborate than the previous film and that experience working with the cast in that aspect of the film.
David Gordon Green: Yeah, I’ll add to that. It was certainly a more aggressive, physical endeavour than the previous chapter. Our stunt coordinator, Aaron Armstrong, coincidentally plays the shape in our flashback sequences, but he choreographed some great sequences that show the aggression of the community of Haddonfield as it comes unravelled due to the terror that Michael’s bringing the community.
I was curious as to what your favourite kill sequence was to film.
David Gordon Green: Well, I’ve always dreamed of a good armpit kill. And so I’d say that’s the one. There’s a lot of logistics that go into a lot of these kills and so it’s almost like the technicalities of them that can become overwhelming and distracting, but once the sensitivity of your armpit is exposed, then it’s actually not that challenging, but every time I watch it, I jump out of my seat.
David, what inspired the idea of sort of expanding the trauma of the first film to the entire town and then creating that sort of theme of the mob mentality that can turn any group of people into almost monsters themselves?
David Gordon Green: There were a lot of characters from the original 1978 film that I was curious about. And as we were exploring what ideas we could do to reboot the franchise, we started talking about what’s Bracket doing now what’s nurse Mary, and what Tommy and Lindsay, who were obviously going to be traumatized from their horrific encounter with the Boogeyman, protected by their babysitter.
How do they respond to that night – that evening’s catastrophe decades ago? That was a fun thing to be able to explore. When we wanted to depart a little bit from just the intimacy of the Michael versus Laurie, good versus evil connection, we decided to explore the blurry line where it’s not so cut and dry of who’s good and who’s bad. And what happens when the best of intentions within that mob mentality starts to excite each other. It became its own type of horror story. It’s who is this the real monster?
The first film got a great audience reaction, so I was wondering do you hope to get the same or better from Halloween Kills and what is it like for you to get that reaction out of the fans?
Jason Blum: We’re going to get a better audience reaction from this film, which I am very much looking forward to. And definitely for me, nothing feels as good as when you’re in a movie theatre and you can feel the audience connecting with the movie you’ve produced or directed. I imagine a director is even closer to the movie, so it feels even better to him. But I’ll let David speak to that.
David Gordon Green: Yeah, exactly! I mean, that’s what appeals to me about this property. There’s such an excited fanbase for it, so as someone who has the opportunity and responsibility for curating or cultivating this kind of real estate, I look at myself as quality control. And to do justice to this franchise that John Carpenter, Debra Hill, Jamie Lee Curtis – these legacy performers and creators – have given us. So it’s amazing to be able to play in their playground.