Some minor spoilers do follow.
The new Halloween (read our review) is a direct sequel to the 1978 original ignoring all the sequels in between. At the film’s Los Angeles press junket, director David Gordon Green told us that he originally intended to begin with the climax of John Carpenter’s film. This would have required refilming the sequence 40 years later.
“Even in the script going into production, we were going to refilm the end of the original film from a different perspective,” Green said.
“We had this very complicated overhead view of Loomis shooting the gun, Michael going over and then the apprehension, assuming everybody was going to need a little bit to get back up to speed with where we are and we haven’t seen the movie in a long time or we’ve never seen the movie, had to invite everyone to the party and that kind of thing. We kept pushing it off.”
Jamie Lee Curtis reprises the role of Laurie Strode, and could have re-enacted some of the original scenes with the help of some movie magic.
“Jamie would’ve recreated, with a blend of Jamie and a body double similar to 19-year-old Jamie,” Green said. “We had all these ideas.”
Loomis is not in the new film, since Donald Pleasance died in the ‘90s, but Green had cast a double.
“We cast a Loomis double who was our art director because we didn’t want to bring one in,” Green said. “He looked exactly like him.”
Also discussed was using CGI to create a digital Loomis like Rogue One did for Peter Cushing.
“There was that conversation,” Green said. “There was conversation of utilizing footage from the original film and digitally altering it so we got some other interesting elements. All this stuff starts to cost money and when you look at what we’re trying to do, do you need the gimmick? Do you need the exposition? Do you need the setup?”
They would have even inserted the young version of a new character. Sheriff Hawkins (Will Patton) says he was a young officer the night Michael Myers came home.
“I cast him,” Green said. “He was our key set PA who we hired because he looked like Will Patton.”
Ultimately, it was Carpenter himself who convinced Green he didn’t need the sequence.
“This was Carpenter actually calming me down on set,” Green said. “I’m like, ‘Nobody’s going to know what’s happening and where we’re coming from.’ He’s like, ‘Just trust ‘em and leave ‘em alone and let ‘em figure it out.’”
One element of the aborted Halloween ’78 reshoot did wind up in the film. See if Laurie Strode’s new house looks familiar to you.
“We rebuilt the bedroom from the climax of the original film so we have the bones of this room,” Green said. “Budgets are getting tighter, schedule’s getting tighter. We’re trying to jam this movie and finish it up. Then we’re like, ‘Screw it. Let’d not do that. If we need it later, we can always rebuild it.’ So we turned the set of the house into Laurie’s bedroom. So the scene in the climax with all the mannequins is to the square inch a rebuild of that room. The closet’s in the same place, the balcony’s in the same place. All those things landed so it became, out of cost necessity, this incredible subconscious (because I don’t think anybody would pick that up) rebuild of an environment from the original film.”
Halloween opens October 19 and Bloody-Disgusting will have more reports from the press junket next month.