— Jamie Lee Curtis (@jamieleecurtis) October 31, 2017
Now that his HBO comedy Vice Principals has come to a wild close, we can all start asking Danny McBride questions about that Halloween sequel he penned with director David Gordon Green — like, for example, how did they get Jamie Lee Curtis to return to the franchise? McBride starts at the beginning.
“I’m a humongous Halloween fan, so when David and I got approached about doing this from Blumhouse [the studio behind Get Out], the first thing David and I said was, ‘We’ll come up with a take, but we have to pitch it to [franchise creator John] Carpenter. If he’s not interested, we’re definitely not into making this.’ And [executive producer] Jason Blum was totally on board with that. That’s exactly what he wanted to do anyway,” McBride says. “So we came up with our pitch. We pitched to Carpenter, and he was into it, which kind of blew David and me away, but I still think nobody was really talking about Jamie. … I think everyone was kind of on the mindset of it’d be a grab to get her, but no one really knew if we would be able to. So Dave and I just busted our ass on this script to really make that Laurie Strode character something she wouldn’t be able to say no to. When we finished the script, we sent it to her, and she said she was in. So we just flipped out. We were over the moon about her involvement.”
McBride is keeping mum on plot details, however, other than to confirm what’s already out there. “We’re kind of ignoring all the films past the first one,” he says. “It picks up after the first one, but it’s sort of an alternate reality. It’s as if the first Halloween ended in a slightly different way.”
Does he feel the pressure of bringing that franchise to a worthy end? “I just hope that we don’t f*** it up and piss people off. This is such a diehard fan base. You don’t want horror fans being your enemies because they show up at your house with masks on,” McBride says. “We are diehard fans of Halloween. We’re watching all the sequels and where things have taken left turns here and there that maybe bites for fans, and at least trying to deliver what we would have wanted to see. Hopefully that will line up with most fans.”
Carpenter, who serves as an executive producer on the new film, has said he’s “going to help to try to make the 10th sequel the scariest of them all.” So just how scared should we be? “I think you should be very scared. I mean, this isn’t a comedy at all. I think there was, like, maybe one joke on the page, but the rest is straight horror,” McBride says. “So hopefully it gets in people’s heads and keeps them up late at night.”
He didn’t have that problem when he was writing it. “I wish horror movies worked on me. Horror movies and roller coasters kind of stopped working on me around age 16,” he says. “I don’t know why, and I’m constantly trying to find the roller coaster or horror movie that will still scare the s*** out of me.”
In the meantime, he’ll have to settle for more outrageous comedy. “I’m sitting here at my desk pounding on what’s next, getting ready to create a new show with HBO with the same team [David Gordon Green and Jody Hill],” he says. “We look forward to taking people on another real good adventure again.”
Halloween hits theaters Oct. 19, 2018.
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