David Gordon Green's Halloween Kills is right around the corner, a follow-up to 2018's Halloween, which is itself a sequel to John Carpenter's 1978 original of the same name. Ahead of Michael Myers returning for more bloody mayhem, Carpenter is talking about another of his iconic movie franchises.
In the latest issue of Total Film, Carpenter reflects on the possibility of Snake Plissken returning to screens. The character is played by Kurt Russell, and debuted in Escape from New York, and then returned in Escape from L.A.
Does Snake hold a special place in Carpenter's heart? "He's a character that Kurt is passionately fond of. He convinced me to do the sequel," the director says. "There's probably a third or maybe even fourth story about Snake. I don't know if we'll ever make it, but I think that he deserves it."
Russell also starred in Carpenter's The Thing, and that movie – or rather its reception – would prove a turning point in Carpenter's career. Shooting on location in Alaska, and with Rob Bottin's demanding special effects, could have been a disaster, but Universal were "very supportive" having gone through a similar experience with Jaws – a film that turned out OK for all involved. Where the studio did have major problems was with the film's nihilistic ending.
"We actually came up with the final lines up there on location," Carpenter recalls. "Universal, once they saw what we'd done, said, 'Can't you be triumphant here?' I had a lot of pressure to change it." What cut the deepest about The Thing's commercial failure is that the film was exactly the movie Carpenter envisioned, no compromises. "It was hated by everybody when it came out because it was so dark. It's the end of everything. I mean, come on!"
For the rest of our interview with Carpenter, pick up a copy of the new issue of Total Film magazine when it hits newsstands in stores and on digital retailers from Friday, July 23.
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