Halloween Memories: Hatchet’s Adam Green

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Sex, film and Michael Myers

In the “slasher” sub-genre Halloween is not only one of the very few gems, but in my opinion, the only perfect slasher film ever made. Everything about it is timeless. The simple title, the poorly carved jack-o-lantern with the ‘mistake’ slit between the nose and the eye, the ’70s film grain, the acting, the chilling score, that emotionless white William Shatner mask, and of course…Dr. Loomis’ classic tirades about Myers that were so perfectly written and delivered that they barely needed to change them for the other 4 sequels he starred in. “Mr. Pleasence, in this scene you’re…ah, f**k it. Just say what you said in all of the other films over and over again – it was perfect the first time.”

For me, Halloween has become my comfort food. It’s like mashed potatoes when your stomach hurts, chicken soup when you are sick, or McDonald’s when you are hung over. It always works and it’s always there for you. I love every bit of it and no matter how many times I’ve seen it, I still love it just as much as I did when I first saw it as a child. When AMC plays it over and over again in October, it’s like my own A Christmas Story. The credits play through, it starts all over again…and I’m still sitting there.

The original Halloween has also been a huge part of almost every aspect of my personal life. For instance, the first time I got in my high school girlfriend’s pants was while watching Halloween on Halloween night. It was just seconds before Annie gets strangled in the car. I think that Annie had just realized that the inside of the car window was fogged up when I…well, you don’t need all of the details do you? The point is – Halloween was there for some very important moments in my life. In fact every now and then I swear I could look over my shoulder and John Carpenter would be standing there with a Marlboro red hanging out of his mouth giving me a big thumbs up in full-on glowing Jedi mode. “Go get ’em, Kid.”

Take my very first short film Columbus Day Weekend, for example. Jason Voorhees and Michael Myers stalked the same campsite by mistake and then turned gay for each other. That stupid little thing wound up becoming my calling card into Hollywood and landing me my first agent.

And because of that, I still make a short film for the holiday of Halloween every year. It’s been a fun thing to do with my friends and a humbling way to remind myself why I am so lucky to get to do what I do. And Halloween always comes back into it somehow. For instance one year we did a parody of MTV’s “Real World” where we stuck Michael Myers in the house as one of the roommates. This past year we did a short film that started off with a replica of the opening shot of Halloween, complete with the children singing and everything. And yes, when things turned south in the film, our hero (“Jack” from Jack In The Box) told his wife to run down the street to the Mackenzie’s house just like Lori Strode did so famously to Lindsey Wallace and Tommy Doyle in Halloween.

The name of the metal band I used to sing for back in Salem, Massachusetts was called “Haddonfield” and our stage set included a Michael Myers head on a big stake at the back of the stage. Our shows always opened with a rendition of Carpenter’s chilling piano score pounding over the loud speakers while the audience stood waiting in the dark. Then a light would hit the Myers mask and a wailing guitar would join the piano as the crowd roared with excitement! (From that point on it was admittedly usually downhill, however.)

Oh, and what about that college girlfriend of mine who repeatedly asked me to don the Michael Myers mask during sex? For the record, maybe I couldn’t breath or see what was going on – but I lasted at least a full minute longer than any of those “two-pump chumps” did in the original Halloween.

And if you look really closely in Hatchet, you’ll see that we purposely cut our own “mistake’” slit between the nose and eye of the jack-o-lantern in the flashback scene for the story of Victor Crowley. (Just like the opening of Halloween.) It was our first night of shooting and we wanted to try and give ourselves some good luck for the daunting task ahead of us. And given how things turned out for that little indie film of mine, I’d say it just might have worked.

Yes, I have so very much to thank John Carpenter for. From helping inspire my career in film, to helping me name and define my band, to some wonderfully filthy sexual experiences, to paving the way for me to one day make Hatchet…Carpenter and his film are like a dear old friend to me.

I totally wouldn’t be the same without Halloween.

“To-tally.”

Adam Green’s Hatchet opens in theaters across America on September 7, 2007. Visit his website and see the short films he’s talking about at Ariescope.com.

Source: Adam Green