Yesterday, Universal announced that it would be pushing off Halloween Kills to next October. Not wanting to leave fans empty-handed, the studio dropped a 30-second piece of teaser footage that sets the stage for Michael Myers' return in the hotly anticipated horror sequel.
In addition, director David Gordon Green and producer John Carpenter released a joint statement explaining the postponement decision (one derived from the evolving pandemic situation) and confirming the return of "legacy characters" such as Tommy Doyle and Nurse Marion Chambers. Thanks to a new Empire Magazine interview conducted with Green and his co-screenwriter Danny McBride, we now know that these familiar faces won't just be included for vapid fan service.
"It takes place the same night, picking up where the last movie ended," McBride explained. "Events in the film bring together a lot of characters who were in the 1978 film who we didn't see last time. They gather to try, once and for all, to take down Michael, to stop this madman."
"The [2018 movie] was more about Laurie's life of isolation after Michael and her attempts at revenge," Green continued. "It was personal. This is more about the unraveling of a community into chaos. It's about how fear spreads virally."
That's certainly a theme we can all relate to in the modern day.
Fortunately, they were able to consult with John Carpenter (returning as composer), who faced similar creative challenges on 1981's Halloween II, which also picks up right where its predecessor left off. Wanting to turn the franchise into an anthology, he was forced to bring Michael back for another round when the first film exploded into a cultural phenomenon. Suffering from a bout of writer's block, he famously came up with the twist of Michael being Laurie Strode's brother.
"He'd asked himself the same questions we've been asking ourselves: 'How do you continue this, but make it satisfying and different?'" Green said, adding that he'd send Carpenter certain scenes and get feedback over Skype. "He would jump, laugh, and sometimes give a thumbs-up."
Written alongside Scott Teems, Halloween Kills is now slated to hit theaters Oct. 15, 2021. A threequel, Halloween Ends, is scheduled to premiere Oct. 14, 2022. Per the director, it'll mark a definitive end to the new series.
"The name 'Halloween Ends' is meant to bring some finality," he said. "From our creative standpoint, we wanted people to know that this is a contained trilogy and that after three, we'll be moving on. We're trying to make it a satisfying close to the story we set out to tell."