David Gordon Green, director of 2018’s Halloween, explains the reasoning behind the choice of the film’s title. It will be the 11th film of the franchise and the third to have the title of Halloween, a choice that has left some to wonder why pick this over something more original to make it stand out. But Green and his team had their reasons.
This year’s Halloween will be a direct sequel to John Carpenter’s 1978 classic horror movie and will feature Jamie Lee Curtis’ return as Laurie Strode. Taking place 40 years after the events of the very first installment of the franchise, 2018’s Halloween will disregard the numerous other sequels of the series. In the words of producer Jason Blum, Green’s upcoming film is a reinvention of the franchise, not a reboot.
As it turns out, it was precisely this line of reasoning that led Green and his collaborators to land on the classic title of Halloween. The director explained to EW that they were actually considering a number of different titles. But the filmmakers wanted the name to reflect the 2018 film’s separation from the previous sequels while also making those who were new to the series feel welcome. While explaining their process, Green said,
“That was a weird discussion. You know, do we call it The Shape? Do we call it Halloween Returns? What do you call it? Technically, it’s the third Halloween II. It kind of got to the point where we were like, ‘Well, we don’t want to not invite anybody. We don’t want someone who is unfamiliar with the previous films to think, well, I need to catch up.’ So then we just thought, for simplicity, let’s just call it Halloween.”
Green even wanted to take his philosophy on welcoming new viewers to the series a step further by drawing the strongest connection possible between Carpenter’s 1978 film and the 2018 installment by reshooting the original film’s iconic ending and opening the new movie with the sequence. Even though they ended up scrapping the idea, this year’s Halloween will still have elements from the original film (such as using the key location of Laurie’s house in certain scenes). This will ground the new installment in the 1978 film’s reality and make it feel as authentic to the original as possible, while still remaining accessible to new viewers.
Green’s efforts and his collaborators to make this year’s Halloween the strongest film possible have created significant buzz amongst fans who are eager to see the film that Carpenter himself has called the best movie of the franchise since his own 1978 Halloween. Green’s movie is indeed gearing up to have a big weekend box office opening, which could actually end up being the best of the entire franchise. Many may not suspect it, but the choice of title might actually play a role in these box office numbers. Instead of choosing a title very specific to the franchise, Green decided to choose something more neutral and simplistic in order to open the film up to everybody – not just loyal fans. All of the talk surrounding the movie, combined with Green’s subtle strategizing behind the title, makes it very likely that those viewers who have never seen Carpenter’s original Halloween will still swarm to theaters to see Green’s take on Laurie and Michael Myers, making the franchise’s fan base grow even larger.