It’s been a great week of news for fans of the genre-creating slice of slasher cinema, Halloween, as original director John Carpenter has rejoined the franchise as executive producer for the next film. However, the director had a handful of harsh things to say about the glut of movies that rose in the wake of Halloween‘s success.
Speaking with Bret Easton Ellis on his podcast (via Vulture), Carpenter spoke up in regards to Halloween and the craze for slasher flicks it germinated. ‘One sprints from an organic idea and has a truly artist’s eye working,’ he says. ‘And Friday the 13th… affects me as very cynical. It’s very cynical moviemaking. It just doesn’t rise above its cheapness.’
Ouch. Carpenter isn’t wrong, necessarily; there is an innate cynicism when it comes to the run of diminishing returns whenever a fresh piece of work reinvigorates audiences. He goes on to say that ‘the reason that all these slasher movies came in the ’80s was a lot of folks said, “Look at that Halloween movie… It was made for peanuts, and look at the money it’s made! We can make money like that”.’
Producing the new instalment of Halloween with horror studio Blumhouse, we welcome Carpenter back with open arms. As for trashing Friday the 13th? Well, we think it’s another horror classic for a reason, one that has also stood the test of time like Halloween – and like Halloween, is a franchise that has also been spoiled by increasingly worse sequels. Let’s wait and see if original Friday the 13th director Sean S. Cunningham has anything to retort with.