Halloween Kills – A frightening odyssey into the nightmarish realm of malevolent evil

That blood-spattered Halloween night in 1978 when masked monster Michael Myers returned for reckoning continues four-decades later with Halloween Kills.

Fans of Halloween will absolutely be thrilled by Halloween Kills, offering a memorable and truly frightening odyssey into the nightmarish realm of malevolent evil that poignantly leads to a conclusion that will have you re-watch the from the first moment Michael Meyers stepped into our nightmares.

With Halloween Kills fans of the cult horror will get answers to questioned that has haunted them during the four-decade franchise that spawned 13 films.

Michael Myers (aka The Shape) in Halloween Kills, directed by David Gordon Green

Halloween (1978), Halloween II (1981), Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982) the only entry in the series that does not feature the series antagonist, Michael Myers, Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988), a direct sequel to Halloween II (1981), ignoring the events of Season of the Witch, which took place in a different continuity from the first two films, Halloween 5 (1989), Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995) which concludes the “Thorn Trilogy” story arc established in Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers and Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers, set six years after the events of Halloween 5, Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998) a direct sequel to the first two films, Halloween: Resurrection (2002) a direct sequel to Halloween H20, Halloween (2007) a remake of 1978 film written, directed, and produced by Rob Zombie, Halloween II (2009), a sequel to Zombie’s 2007 remake of 1978’s Halloween, Halloween (2018), a sequel to the 1978 film of the same name, while effecting a retroactive continuity (‘retcon’) of all previous sequels, Halloween Kills (2021), a direct sequel to 2018’s Halloween, and Halloween Ends (2022) set to resolve the story on October 14, 2022.

James Jude Courtney as Michael Meyers in Halloween Kills.

Minutes after Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis), her daughter Karen left masked monster Michael Myers caged and burning in Laurie’s basement, Laurie is rushed to the hospital with life-threatening injuries, believing she finally killed her lifelong tormentor. But when Michael manages to free himself from Laurie’s trap, his ritual bloodbath resumes. As Laurie fights through her pain and prepares to defend herself against him, she inspires all of Haddonfield to rise up against their unstoppable monster. The Strode women join a group of other survivors of Michael’s first rampage who decide to take matters into their own hands, forming a vigilante mob that sets out to hunt Michael down, once and for all. Evil dies tonight.

A trilogy that serves as the definitive companion piece to Carpenter’s 1978 masterpiece

“For me Halloween (1978) a masterpiece of horror because of the simplicity of it. Michael Myers is the essence of evil, and Laurie Strode is the essence of good. So, it’s a very straightforward, wonderfully told and brilliantly executed mythology, says director and co-writer David Gordon Green, who re-united with the returning filmmaking team responsible for Halloween Kills, from a screenplay crafted by Scott Teems (SundanceTV’s Rectify) and Danny Mcbride (Halloween, TV’s The Righteous Gemstones) and Green, based on characters created by John Carpenter and Debra Hill (Escape from L.A., The Fog).

“If our 2018 Halloween reintroduced the world of Michael and Laurie, which is a story that Halloween Ends will resolve, Halloween Kills is here as a middle chapter to make some noise and see the conflict and chaos that permeates through Haddonfield as fear goes beyond the households and generations of three Strode women,” says Green.

When David Gordon Green woke up on Monday, October 22, 2018, the director discovered that the opening of his Halloween had earned more than $76 million at the domestic box office and shattered records for the genre.

James Jude Courtney as Michael Meyers in Halloween Kills.

In Green’s Halloween, set 40 years after John Carpenter’s 1978 horror classic, Laurie Strode refuses to be victim and seeks justice and vengeance against Michael Myers, the monster who stole her youth and haunted her every waking moment since. The intricate tale of unresolved trauma, defiance and empowerment unleashed a newfound fervor in Halloween fans worldwide.

Malek Akkad—whose family’s production company, Trancas International Films, has produced the Halloween series since its inception—and his fellow creative production partners, Blumhouse’s Jason Blum and blockbuster producer Bill Block found that audience response surpassed their wildest expectations.

“The genius of the first film was that all the stars aligned, and we were able to get Jamie Lee Curtis and John Carpenter back together,” Akkad says. “We knew David did an amazing job and we had a great film, but the reception to it was beyond wonderful. It was so satisfying to see not only diehard fans come out, but a broader audience embrace the film.”

It had long been Green’s dream to helm a trilogy that served as the definitive companion piece to Carpenter’s 1978 masterpiece. The plan for two subsequent films, Halloween Kills and next year’s Halloween Ends, began to take shape even before 2018’s Halloween was released. All three films would rely on the 1978 film and no other subsequent sequels as source material, and all three Green films would take place on the same night.

(from left) Director David Gordon Green and Anthony Michael Hall on the set of Halloween Kills.

Green was certain that restarting the clock was the only way to do Laurie’s story justice

“If we have done our jobs correctly, there are four films that will be one hell of an arc,” Green says. “Carpenter’s ’78 film, our 2018 film, then Halloween Kills and Halloween Ends. There are threads thematically beyond just Easter eggs and fan entertainment. Hopefully, there’s substance, relevance and characters that you may have missed—if you blinked in one film—that show up with a bit more substance in the next.”

The filmmakers knew that the success of their first chapter gave them leeway to create the narrative arc for the next two entries.

Joining Danny McBride and Green for writing duties on Halloween Kills would be their close friend Scott Teems.

“When you have a successful film like Halloween, it allows Danny and Scott and me to make a bigger, badder, nastier, crazier next chapter,” Green says. “With Halloween Kills, we’re trying to deliver something for the fans and exercise new muscles for ourselves.”

Danny Mcbride

Green and his longtime creative partner McBride watched the 1978 film so many times that it became obvious which characters should be brought into the story for Halloween Kills.

“It had to do with trying to open the movie up and tapping into this world of Haddonfield,” McBride says.

“We wanted to make it feel more lived in by finding characters that had been established in Carpenter’s original and finding ways to keep them involved in the story.”

As they began putting pen to paper, Green and his cohorts were clear that they wanted to navigate the long-term effects of violence on an entire community.

“With the first film, we explored how Michael Myers’ killing spree on a Halloween night four decades earlier had affected Laurie and how that, in turn, had affected her family,” McBride says. “In Halloween Kills, we were interested in seeing how that same night had affected the town. That’s why David wanted to have this mob story as an integral part of it.”

In Halloween Kills, Laurie is no longer fighting Michael alone, or with only her daughter and granddaughter. She’s got Michael’s other survivors of that night, and all of Haddonfield, fighting with her.

Together, the three screenwriters created an unexpected structure for Halloween Kills.

James Jude Courtney as Michael Meyers in Halloween Kills.

The film begins seconds after the events of the first film, with an injured Laurie having left Michael Myers trapped and burning in her basement. But, simultaneously, it also begins with a scene set during the events of 2018’s Halloween, with citizens of Haddonfield who don’t yet know that Michael is back. In effect, the opening scenes of Halloween Kills seamlessly fuse the two films into one unbroken story.

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Scott Teems

“I find it fascinating to look at dramatic scenarios from multiple perspectives,” Teems says.

What proved fascinating to screenwriters Teems, McBride and Green was to take a look at Carpenter’s seminal 1978 film from another angle. At the end of that film, Dr. Loomis shoots Michael Myers, who falls backward off the balcony. When Loomis looks down onto the grass, the killer is not there. The events in Halloween Kills pick up with what happened after that. Minutes later, we meet young Deputy Hawkins and his partner on the Haddonfield police force as they’re trying to track Michael down. Presumably, Michael has just walked off the lawn after he evaded Loomis and is wandering through the suburbs. Now the entire Haddonfield police force has descended on those neighborhoods, and we’re following them into the night. 

“Entering Halloween Kills in the middle of the first movie—from the point of view of characters we didn’t even know were in Haddonfield—gives it a powerful, tension-filled energy. It reminds the audience that this world is bigger than just Laurie Strode, yet all of these characters have a connection to her that will eventually bring them into the path of true evil.”

The writing trio proved to be an ideal team. “What I love about what Scott brings to the narrative is this tension and energy to move the story forward,” producer Jason Blum says. “David is the captain of our ship, and Danny takes such an aerial view of the trilogy’s events. Together, they were tireless in discovering the core of what this second chapter is. We’ve met Laurie 40 years later and followed her journey through madness, but what about others in Haddonfield who have been traumatized by Michael Myers? What does it look like for them to be suddenly thrust back into his line of sight? I can’t imagine three storytellers who could do better justice to this emotional—and physically consuming—arc.”

Block was equally moved by how the writers were able to parlay their vision for the lost souls of this small town and create a screenplay that was equal parts poignant drama and terrifying thriller. But what surprised the producer most was their ability to weave in vignettes of slight comedy.

“No one knows better than these guys how deeply you need moments of comedic relief among these brutal kills,” Block says. “In other hands, that would look simple and derivative. Danny, Scott and David, however, are able to bring in these brief moments of levity that give the viewers a jarring step away from the murder and mayhem that Michael is leaving in his wake. I remain astonished by their skillset, which seems so simple but is so nuanced and layered.”

Equal parts champion and protector of Laurie Strode, Jamie Lee Curtis sees herself as Laurie’s guardian angel. Embracing and carrying the heroine’s mantle for more than four decades, Curtis as Laurie fought back and survived.

“For Laurie, her journey was complete,” says Curtis, who also serves as an executive producer on Halloween Kills. “She gave it all in the first movie. Her heart, soul, blood, courage, strength, wisdom: her everything. She was a warrior.”

While it took the majority of 2018’s Halloween for anyone to believe Laurie that Michael Myers had returned and was coming for her, Laurie’s decades of preparation for that night allowed her and her family to trap him in a basement prison and burn him alive. Unfortunately, at the beginning of Halloween Kills, Haddonfield’s well-meaning fire-and-rescue force arrive on scene just a little too early for the job to be finished.

 “Audiences got to feel that sense of satisfaction that Laurie had won at the end of Halloween,” Curtis says. “But in order to continue the story, that satisfaction has to be defeated and that bubble has to be burst—because Michael survived.”

Jamie Lee Curtis in Halloween Kills.

For Curtis, the honor of playing Laurie is matched by how much joy the films have given to fans around the world. “To all of the people that love these movies, I say, ‘Happy Halloween,’” Curtis says. “I hope you don’t come to my house, because I won’t open the door. I leave a bag of candy out in front, and usually it’s all there at the end of the night. I think that means nobody knows where I live, which is good. I wish you a happy one and a safe one, and I thank you for my life.”

The role of The Shape/Michael Myers was originated by the incomparable Nick Castle, who brought the character to the screen alongside longtime friends John Carpenter and the first Halloween’s production designer, Tommy Wallace. “They were the original triumvirate of Halloween,” Jamie Lee Curtis says. “They were friends who went to film school together and were also in a band called the Coup de Villes and made a movie along with Debra Hill, whom Laurie is the physical embodiment of.”

Castle agreed to cameos as The Shape in 2018’s Halloween and Halloween Kills but has formally passed the baton on to good friend James Jude Courtney, a celebrated stuntman and performer who does the lion’s share of work as The Shape.

Generous with his time and character reflections, Castle gave the filmmakers and Courtney instructions on his signature movements—for example, how Michael Myers sits up at a 90-degree angle without using his hands or how he tilts his head to observe a kill—and subtle nuances germane to David Gordon Green’s storytelling.

(from left) Nick Castle and James Jude Courtney on the set of Halloween Kills

When Courtney inherited the mantle for 2018’s Halloween, he was looking to capture the energy with which Castle imbued The Shape’s physicality. “Nick will tell you, ‘Oh, I just walked…’ Well, no,” Courtney says. “If you look at Nick’s filmography, he is a brilliant creative. What he intuitively did was take what John Carpenter and Debra Hill imagined, embodied it and allowed himself to move his body in a certain way and to create that energy.”

As Courtney was preparing to meet Green, he watched the 1978 film. “There is a scene where Nick is walking camera left to camera right in the back yard,” Courtney says, “and I was reaching into what he created energetically. In my head, it went ‘I got it!’ I made no notes. I had no left-brain perception of what this character is or why he’s doing what he does. I’m not going to think about it until after I’m completely done playing this character.” 

(from left) Director David Gordon Green and James Jude Courtney on the set of Halloween Kills.

Born in Little Rock, AK, and raised in Texas, David Gordon Green (Directed by/Written by/Executive Producer) attended The North Carolina School of the Arts where he studied film. He wrote and directed his first feature film, George Washington, and also directed All The Real Girls, Pineapple Express, Joe, Stronger and the reboot of the Halloween franchise.Green was a producer and director of the HBO series Eastbound and Down, creator of the MTV animated series Good Vibes, director of the Amazon series Red Oaks, the HBO series Vice Principals, the Apple series Dickinson, Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet and the HBO series The Righteous Gemstones.

The Writers

Scott Teems (Written by) is a Georgia-born filmmaker whose upcoming projects include The Exorcist, another collaboration with Green and McBride and Stephen King’s Firestarter, which he adapted for the screen and will executive produce. Teems adapted another King property, The Breathing Method, which is in development with Spyglass and director Gore Verbinski, and he wrote the upcoming sequel Insidious 5 for Sony/Blumhouse and director Patrick Wilson. Teems also penned the adaptation of Abraham Verghese’s bestselling novel Cutting For Stone for BRON Studios, Anonymous Content and director Richie Mehta. Teems’ previous credits as writer-director include the award-winning films That Evening Sun, Holbrook/Twain, and most recently, The Quarry. Teems was a writer and co-executive producer of the popular Netflix series Narcos: Mexico, and he wrote, directed, and produced three seasons of the acclaimed, Peabody Award-winning SundanceTV drama Rectify.

Writer, director, producer, composer John Carpenter’s (Music by/Executive Producer/Based on Characters Created by) breakthrough film was Halloween (1978), the seminal horror film. Made for $300,000, it was the most profitable independent movie of its day, and to date has spawned several sequels. Horror, sci-fi, action and comedy…he’s done it all and influenced a whole generation of filmmakers and composers following in his wake. In 2019, Carpenter came full circle with his film score for the 2018 version of Halloween and won the ASCAP honor for top box office film score. In the gaming world, he co-wrote the video game Fear 3 for Warner Bros. Interactive. In the world of comics, he is the co-publisher of and a contributor to Storm King Comics. He has co-written comics for BOOM! featuring his character Jack Burton and a one-shot in 2019 for DC Comics Joker: Year of the Villain #1. In May 2019, he was given Le Carrosse D’Or by the French Directors Guild in Cannes.

Danny Mcbride (Written by/Executive Producer) has become a multi-hyphenate in the truest sense of the word and is generating a full plate of varied and interesting projects. McBride wrote his latest comedy series for HBO, The Righteous Gemstones, and its second season is currently in pre-production. McBride also co-created two other iconic series for HBO, Vice Principals and Eastbound & Down. Following his success in the comedy space, McBride entered into the world of horror where he continues to showcase his versatility. McBride and David Gordon Green cracked a reboot to Halloween that was a global success at the box office. After receiving raving reviews, the two have teamed up to write and executive produce the following two films in the Halloween Trilogy. McBride will executive produce The Exorcist, which is set to premiere in 2023.McBride and David Gordon Green co-founded Rough House Pictures alongside Jody Hill. The three met at the prestigious North Carolina School of the Arts and have been collaborators for over 20 years. It was there that their first collaboration, the cult classic, The Foot Fist Way, made its way to Sundance and from there, it exploded in the film comedy world.

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