Tonight at midnight, Halloween 2 will terrorize audiences nationwide. Woot Woot. Last week, I attended the press conference for the film and got the rundown from the film’s director, Rob Zombie, who for such a dark and juvenile director/musician is incredibly soft-spoken and introverted.
Check out some of the highlights from the press conference below…
So you said you’d never do another one and you did another one…
Rob Zombie: A couple things. Yes I said I wouldn’t do another one, and no one even asked me to do another one. You know, because I’d made it so clear to the Weinstein Company that I didn’t want to do it, so they didn’t even ask. And then I thought, I’d heard that these other guys were doing it, and I thought, ‘oh, whatever.’ And then I was at the SCREAM awards last October, and I talked to someone from the company and I said ‘you know how is filming going on Halloween 2?’, because, you know, I thought they were already shooting it. And he said ‘oh were not even filming, we don’t have a script yet, we don’t even have a treatment that we like’. And by that point I had already put out a record, gone on tour, done these other things. And gotten away from Halloween enough that the idea of coming back seemed kinda “eh…” and by that point I didn’t really like the idea of other writers and directors coming in and taking what I now saw as my characters, or my versions of Athem anyway, and running away with them. So that’s what I came back.
What was production like?
RZ: We started shooting in February, and I think I started messing around with ideas in November. It was kinda tricky, I mean, I knew the things I wanted to do. The beginning of the movie was easy. Like, immediately picking up after. But I’d written a bunch of different scenarios. I didn’t have Laurie living with the Bracketts, I had all these other scenarios…I wanted to keep those characters in Laurie’s life. The script went through so many changes while we were shooting. This movie has no relation to the script.
I like to over-film scenes. I figure, for me anyway, it seems that the scene starts slow, it’s kind of a mess, they totally get into the groove, and then it degenerates and you just snip off the ends and throw them away. Cause there’s always that middle section. If it’s a short scene, there’s no ramp to it.
I shot the last movie in 35 and I hated the way it looked. I thought it looked to clean. It made the subject matter seem to movie like – it wasn’t as nasty as I wanted it to look. And I just thought the 16 feels more like real life to me – something about it.
What was it like shooting a lot of dream sequences/flash backs?
Those were tricky because that was the one element in the film I wanted to keep. I wanted a device so that Michael Meyers could have some sort of voice. But the more reality based the movie gets the more tricky it is to incorporate something that’s so fantasy like. Then it became the way he sees the world in his crazy game, I thought, it’s inside his head. It was always a balance to make it work.
I really wanted to make this gritty little movie with the Laurie character. I always felt that the doctor Loomis character wasn’t a dominant presence in the movie but they didn’t know what to do with him. I thought how do I keep Dr. Loomis alive – it’s like I shot two different movies. Everyone else is in the freezing cold in the mud and Loomis is in some swanky hotel or the back of a limo having a great time. The end of the movie was the last thing we shot.
As a filmmaker what attracts you to this genre? What compels you to want to tell stories that are really dark and morbid?
I don’t really know. I’ve just always been attracted to dark material. Not just horror stuff. I would like to do stuff that is dark but not a horror movie – because I with horror I feel like the stuff people expect. There’s a much darker cut of the movie with Laurie. Almost like we were making this drama about the destruction of a teenage girl – but people expect Michael Meyers. So you can’t always go down those roads.
Will there be more on the DVD?
Probably. Maybe 15 minutes longer. It’s all character stuff with Laurie. In this movie she starts kind of normal like she’s holding onto reality. And in the other cut she’s already lost it from the beginning.
Are you definitely done with Halloween?
I wouldn’t do a third one for several reasons. I feel like I ended the story, even though no matter what you do people think you’re setting up a sequel. The other thing, the same reason I didn’t re-visit Devil’s Rejects. The third one always sucks.
Would you consider stepping into another genre?
I’d like to do something different. If you look at what’s out there in general. All they want to do is re-makes. Every offer that comes to me is a re-make. They want to do re-makes, graphic novels…it’s hard to get something new through the pipe line.
The Halloween movies notoriously struggle with their endings, what was your process like?
We went back and re-worked the ending. What I’ve always done…we left the ending ’til the end of shooting because we knew we didn’t have enough time. It was almost a ploy in order to force them to give us more time to shoot. Because you HAVE to have an ending.
Explain your experience working with Scout..
It was great working with Scout again. I had just met Scout when we’d done Halloween, she was 17, she was young. Now she’s 20. Over the course of that time we’d become friends. And the more you can get to know somebody the more you can do with them. The biggest thing for me is that the more the actors trust you, the more you can get out of them. Actors are very guarded. If they don’t trust you, they’re not going to give you their all.
Catch HALLOWEEN 2 in theatres this Friday, August 28th!