- “Halloween” (1978) is a classic horror film, but even superfans may not know these fun facts.
- Jamie Lee Curtis landed a leading role because of her mom, and 16 people have played Michael Myers.
- Haddonfield is a real town, but it’s in New Jersey, not Illinois.
Debra Hill, a producer on the film and Carpenter’s then-girlfriend, actually cowrote the film with him.
She also helped write some of the sequel films, including “Halloween II” (1981).
Because of the tight budget, they couldn’t hire major stars, and Carpenter himself put together the now-iconic score to save money.
Today, “Halloween” is a multimillion-dollar franchise.
Originally built at 709 Meridian Avenue, the structure was set to be demolished in the late 1980s but was saved, designated as a landmark by the city, and relocated to its current address, 1000 Mission Street.
When the poster was put up for auction in 2016, artist Bob Gleason included a letter that explained how the detail came about.
“While painting the hand my thought was to have dramatic lights and dark shapes to match the strobe stabbing effects of the pumpkin,” he wrote. “I did not consciously know I was infusing in the back of the hand a screaming monster with worms coming out of his mouth, eye and nose.”
The letter continued, “This kind of freaks me out. I couldn’t have done it better if I had tried to do that. What dark nightmares lurk in my psyche?”
He spoke next in “Halloween II” (2009).
“I knew casting Jamie Lee would be great publicity for the film because her mother was in ‘Psycho.’ At least I knew she had the genes to scream well,” Hill told Cinefantastique News in 1998.
Her character’s name, Laurie Strode, was also based on one of Carpenter’s ex-girlfriends.
So far, more than 16 actors have appeared on screen as villain Michael Myers (if you count all the times crew members filled in).
There were six people who played Michael in the first film alone, including Hill.
In a 2014 interview with Deadline, he said that he didn’t return to direct the sequels because he “didn’t think there was any more story” beyond the first film.
“All of my ideas were for the first ‘Halloween’ — there shouldn’t have been any more,” he said. “I’m flattered by the fact that people want to remake them, but they remake everything these days, so it doesn’t make me that special.”
Carpenter ended up writing the first sequel, “Halloween II,” and he’s an executive producer on the others.
Carpenter and Hill thought that it would be interesting if there were an anthology of horror films where the common thread was that they all occurred on Halloween night.
But “Season of the Witch” didn’t live up to the box-office numbers of the prior two films, so Michael Myers made his return six years later.
For example, in “Halloween 5,” Myers briefly drove a car and wore a completely different mask that has come to be known as “The Brute.”