Earlier this week, John Carpenter revealed that David Gordon Green had planned to kill off Dr. Loomis in the opening scene of his forthcoming Halloween (2018), opening in theaters tomorrow night. While he didn’t offer any details, he did explain that he had to talk the filmmakers out of the “revision” that he felt was a “mistake” audiences wouldn’t like.
I’ve had my hands on an early draft of the new Halloween for over a year now, but haven’t reported on it since there had been multiple revisions (I wasn’t sure what was being changed through multiple rewrites and reshoots). Minor spoiler warning: Now that we know the new Halloween opens modern day, and that Carpenter has openly referenced the omitted sequence, I feel like it would be fun to share what Green and co-writers Danny McBride and Jeff Fradley had planned.
In the finale of Carpenter’s 1978 Halloween, Michael Myers is attacking Jamie Lee Curtis‘ Laurie Strode. After being unmasked for a brief second, Dr. Loomis (Donald Pleasence) shoots Michael and sends him stumbling into a bedroom. He takes aim and unloads into The Shape, sending him out the window and flying off the balcony. Laurie, who is curled up and crying, looks up at Loomis and exclaims, “It was the Boogeyman.” Loomis replies, “As a matter of fact… it was,” and then looks out the window to learn that Michael is still alive and has escaped.
The 2018 Halloween was going to open with a recreation of this sequence, only with the drastic revision of Dr. Loomis getting killed. The film would have picked up with the scene from Carpenter’s in which Laurie tells the children to run down the street and call for help.
Loomis, searching for Michael, sees the children running out of the house. Ignoring the children, his concern is more with the house they left behind. Entering, he runs upstairs and sees Laurie struggling with Michael, removing his mask. It offers him a clean shot. Bang. Michael stumbles into the bedroom, exactly as it plays out in the original film. Here’s where everything changes: when Loomis enters the room, instead of shooting Michael off the balcony, the Dr. finds himself attacked by The Shape. Michael grabs him by the throat and pins him to the wall, choking him to death.
“The Shape GRABS LOOMIS’ THROAT and throws him to the wall. Loomis drops the gun on the floor wheezing for breath. The Shape CHOKES Loomis, who struggles against the wall. 2. The Shape’s thumbs crush Loomis’ THROAT. He drops to the ground, DEAD. The Shape looks down at Loomis’ lifeless body.”
As Loomis goes limp, a bullet just misses Michael. It’s Laurie, sobbing, “No…” She fires over and over, sending Michael out the window and over the balcony. Here, Laurie peers over and sees the Boogeyman laying on the ground and continues to pull the trigger:
“Laurie shivers, holding the gun in the shadows. She moves to the edge of the balcony and aims the gun at The Shape’s body. She pulls the trigger but the gun is empty. She keeps pulling the trigger…”
Here, the cops arrive and swarm all over Michael as the camera follows Laurie back into the house.
“Laurie sobs, shivering against the wall, still holding the gun, still pulling the trigger over and over again in the dark…”
It’s unclear why the writers felt the need to revisit the original, but what I like is that it turns Laurie Strode into the clear protagonist. A modern take on the source material would find Laurie shooting Michael out the window and Dr. Loomis would have sacrificed himself for her. It actually makes a lot of sense, although the new film now perfectly juxtaposes Laurie from Carpenter’s film with the newly reborn and strong-willed grandmother Laurie has become in Green’s “sequel”.
In the end, it appears that Carpenter was right on the money. And if you’re curious how they were going to pull this off, Green explained it to us a few months ago.
What do you all think?